Climate group launches new campaign against Bitcoin mining

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Climate group launches new campaign against Bitcoin mining

  • Climate groups want Bitcoin to follow Ethereum into switching from Proof-of-Work to Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism.
  • The groups have announced a new $1 million ad campaign targeted at pressuring Bitcoin and companies like Fidelity, PayPal and Jack Dorsey’s Block to help push the agenda.
  • Bitcoiners already scoffed at the calls when the campaign “Change the Code, Not the Climate” first launched in March.

It was bound to happen and so it has.

A new campaign is underway targeting Bitcoin’s energy use as a proof-of-work (PoW) network. The debate is getting new impetus after Ethereum finally launched its software upgrade via the Merge to become a proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain.

And as Ethereum cuts its energy consumption by 99.95%, which Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin confirmed will reduce global consumption by 0.2%, a host of environmental groups want Bitcoin to follow suit.

Bitcoin is an ‘outlier’, group claims

A statement published on Thursday by the Environmental Working Group, says a $1 million ad campaign has been launched to push for a rethink of Bitcoin’s “outmoded” PoW consensus mechanism.

Apart from online advertisements, the initiative through Greenpeace is petitioning Fidelity Investments – which recently added Bitcoin to its clients’ retirement (401(k)) accounts – to push for a PoW-to-PoS transition for BTC. Other players mentioned in the release are PayPal and Jack Dorsey’s Block (formerly Square Inc.).

“Change the Code, Not the Climate” director Michael Brune said Bitcoin needs to look at the climate crisis and take its responsibility. He noted:

With fires raging around the world and historic floods destroying lives and livelihoods, state and federal leaders and corporate executives are racing to decarbonize as quickly as possible. Ethereum has shown it’s possible to switch to an energy-efficient protocol with far less climate, air and water pollution. Other cryptocurrency protocols have operated on efficient consensus mechanisms for years. Bitcoin has become the outlier, defiantly refusing to accept its climate responsibility.

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According to the “Change the Code, Not the Climate” group, discussions involving Congress and the Biden administration are taking place as they try to push the campaign goal.

Bitcoiners already put it to the group after the $5 million anti BTC campaign’s launch in March that no such thing will happen. In fact, people pointed to Bitcoin mining already going green across the globe. 

Darin Feinstein, the co-founder of blockchain-focused firm Core Scientific, explained why Greenpeace should have been fighting for Bitcoin and not against it. His tweet in March: 

So, will Ethereum’s merge give the “Change the Code, Not the Climate” campaign the thrust it hopes to get to make “the change” happen? .

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