Bitcoin beats gold on mining

Mining leading cryptocurrencies takes around twice as much energy as mining for metals such as gold, platinum, and copper. And top cryptocoin Bitcoin on its own requires three times as much energy to mine than gold, according to research from the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education.

The researchers also find that mining Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Monero cryptocurrencies create between 3m and 16m tons of CO2 emissions per annum, depending on how mining operations source their electricity.

However, “future environmental impacts for any of the cryptocurrencies on a per-coin-mined basis may be greater or less than those determined in our current assessment,” the researchers say.

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