Bitcoin and Elon Musk are three words that have been regularly appearing side by side this year, and they continue to do so. On Sunday, June 13, the Tesla CEO went onto Twitter to state that the EV company would resume accepting the cryptocurrency as payment for its EVs once its miners use cleaner energy.
"When there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50%) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing bitcoin transactions," wrote Musk.
Just a few months after it started accepting bitcoin as a form of payment for its EVs, Tesla suspended bitcoin transactions in mid-May, citing environmental concerns over its mining methods, which at the time, sent the cryptocurrency crashing. However, after Musk's comment on June 13, the price of one bitcoin went up to $39,500, reported The Guardian, a jump up of approximately 10 percent.
This is inaccurate. Tesla only sold ~10% of holdings to confirm BTC could be liquidated easily without moving market.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 13, 2021
When there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50%) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing Bitcoin transactions.
To mine or not to mine crypto, that is the question. Heavy computer calculations that verify transactions are required for cryptocurrencies to work, and these computers need a heck of a lot of electricity to run. Each digital currency uses its own methods to gather than energy, some of which are greener than others.
Bitcoin mining consumes huge amounts of electricity — more so than the entire country of Argentina, and other nations. And if Bitcoin's value keeps rising, so does its energy consumption. So when Tesla announced earlier this year it would be accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment, many people raised their eyebrows given the company's push towards environmental progress, and Bitcoin's lack of it.
Mining Bitcoin doesn't have to stay stuck using such an environmentally unfriendly method. A company in Wyoming, Highwire Energy Partners, has come up with a novel solution that uses natural gas to power Bitcoin mining. It powers massive ASIC machines that are powered by harvesting natural gas that would typically be discarded by some of the state's numerous natural gas wells.
There are ways of turning Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies', mining into a greener, and cleaner process, and we'll have to wait and see if or when Tesla starts accepting Bitcoin once more for its transactions.