Bitcoin remains an incredibly tantalizing digital asset, as those who invest wisely in this cryptocurrency can earn huge sums of money for themselves. Bitcoin miners and investors are nevertheless forced to contend with the fact that their market is incredibly volatile, and that technological changes are constantly upsetting industry practices. New and more efficient bitcoin mining processes, for instance, can help lower the energy costs associated with producing the digital tokens.
How can Bitcoin miners reduce their energy burden in order to save money and become more environmentally sustainable? Here’s a breakdown of how to lower the energy costs of mining Bitcoin, and why else the cryptocurrency has undergone serious changes recently.
It’s important to establish that there’s much ongoing disruption in the cryptocurrency marketplace right now that’s preventing miners and investors from achieving their ideal outcomes. Bitcoin mining is being substantially upended by supply chain difficulties arising from the global coronavirus pandemic, for instance, as certain equipment makers are finding it impossible to produce the goods they ship to eager customers around the globe.
According to one recent report, for instance, Chinese companies producing Bitcoin mining equipment are finding it impossible to do their jobs following a crackdown by authorities meant to diminish the spread of the coronavirus. Workers who could be busy producing this equipment are instead self-quarantining at home or finding themselves prevented from heading into work by government or company regulations. As such, Bitcoin miners around the globe who are desperate to get their hands on the latest mining equipment are finding themselves sorely out of luck. The ultimate impact of the pandemic on Bitcoin could have serious implications for the broader marketplace in the years to come.
Just because there’s some supply chain difficulties affecting the world of Bitcoin right now doesn’t mean things will always be this bad. Indeed, there are plenty of reasons to believe that Bitcoin will bounce back from this crisis like so many others and emerge stronger than ever before. Digital cryptocurrencies remain an enticing asset in an era of eroding privacy, but they’ll only be obtainable if they can be mined efficiently and without wasting huge sums of power.
So, how do you lower your energy costs when mining Bitcoin? The first tip is to avoid illegal or unethical behavior that can expedite mining; many Bitcoin enthusiasts are considering tapping into their work computers to mine Bitcoin, for instance, as doing so would enable them to pass the electricity costs of mining onto their employers. More than being unethical, this is flagrantly illegal in many areas; Uzbekistan alone recently announced a massive electricity tax aimed at the cryptocurrency community explicitly because of abuses that were going on. Individual miners have been fired from their jobs and fined heavily for using work computers for mining purposes, so don’t think lowering your electricity costs with this method is worth it.
One reliable option is to depend upon specific products marketed towards bitcoin miners that claim to make the process easier. You have to be careful, though, as these are private companies attempting to make a profit for themselves. Gigabit Magazine recently did a review of Node, a commercial product aimed at helping Bitcoin enthusiasts mine the currency without using too much energy. Be sure to carefully scrutinize these products before depending upon them, as they’ll vary greatly in quality and features. The last thing you want to do is find yourself incapable of checking cryptocurrency prices because a faulty product fried your house’s electricity.
The only surefire way to mitigate the immense amount of electricity that Bitcoin operations need to keep thriving is by implementing cryptogovernance, or wisely-conceived policies that will enable the sustainable production of digital assets without tarnishing the environment. As this argument points out, government regulations are effectively the only measure that Bitcoin miners will respect in large enough numbers to make a difference. Baring these measures, the continued pursuit of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin could become too cost prohibitive in the near-future.
Bitcoin miners are going to find the forthcoming days to be difficult and costly. Many people who are unethically and illegally using company machines to mine Bitcoin will find it impossible to do so as they quarantine in order to avoid the ongoing global pandemic. Others will simply find that mining Bitcoin at home is cost-prohibitive, as there’s very little that the average miner can do to mitigate their electricity usage short of setting up a massive facility that requires a huge amount of startup capital.
Despite efforts to lower its costs and make it more accessible, the future of Bitcoin mining will remain dominated by the select few with enough financial resources or the access to huge computer farms needed to survive in this industry.