One critical against mining (mainly bitcoin, the biggest cryptocurrency of the world) is precisely its negative impact on the environment. However, a new study conducted by the University of Cambridge reveals a positive change in the last semester triggered at the end of most of the mining operations in China.

In practice, fewer people mining means fewer electronic devices working and consequently less energy being consumed, which significantly reduces the environmental impact of bitcoin. China's tougher rules have also taken a lot of older and less efficient equipment out of circulation.

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Now, with China “closing the door” on old-fashioned mining, big miners are looking for cheaper, renewable energy sources. So says Mike Colyer, CEO of the cryptocurrency company Foundry.

Colyer declared to the portal CNBC that miners “are looking for energy that is renewable”. Which, according to the executive, “will be a great victory for bitcoin” in the future.

Current energy consumption from bitcoin mining

Illustration shows the B combined with the dollar sign, which represents the croptocurrency bitcoin
Bitcoin is considered the first and foremost cryptocurrency on the market. Image: Igor Batrakov/Shutterstock

Today, bitcoin mining is estimated to consume around 70 terawatt hours of energy per year, which corresponds to 0,33% of the world's electricity production (almost half of what was observed in May this year).

The new bitcoin network, according to specialists on the subject, will be composed increasingly of efficient platforms and with double the 'hashpower' (mining power) for the same electricity demand, significantly improving the energy consumption ratio.

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Finally, it is worth remembering that, after China took new measures to curb cryptocurrency mining due to high energy consumption, the global computing power (or 'hashrate') of miners fell by half.

With that, other countries like the United States became the new focus of miners. Still according to CNBC, in the last semester, the country jumped from fifth to second place in cryptocurrency mining and already accounts for a 17% share of global bitcoin mining.

The US news portal also indicates that around 500 Chinese mining rigs are expected to be deployed in the US, meaning that North America will account for 40% of the entire global mining hashrate by the end of 2022.

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