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01/12/2023   Alex De Vries Claims Each Bitcoin Transaction Uses a Swimming Pool Full of Water

Bitcoin Going From Boiling the Oceans to Draining Them, According to Critic

Swimming pool water (Aquilatin/Pixabay)

Swimming pool water (Aquilatin/Pixabay)

Longtime Bitcoin(BTC)critic Alex De Vries said each transaction on the Bitcoin network uses over 16,000 liters of water, enough to fill a small swimming pool.

De Vries yesterdaypublished a research paperwith his findings, arguing that a combination of miner cooling systems and the water consumption for miner energy sources are behind the massive usage.

The findings echo De Vries' previous criticisms of Bitcoin, which centered on the electricity usage of bitcoin mining. His tech research site, Digiconomist, for example, keeps a log of the footprint of each bitcoin transaction, putting it on par with "808,554 Visa transactions or 60,802 hours of watching YouTube."

The validity of calculating the energy cost per bitcoin transaction has, however, been criticized as having little relevance without further context. Cambridge University'sCenter for Alternative Finance, for instance, pointed out that "transaction throughput is independent of the network’s electricity consumption. Adding more mining equipment and thus increasing electricity consumption will have no impact on the number of processed transactions."

Digiconomist's name was also put to a 2017 prediction that Bitcoinwould match the entire world's entire power consumption by 2020, an estimate which fell into a similar trap of predictionsfrom the early 1990s about internet traffic and electricity use.

De Vries' latest offering to the Bitcoin discourse was met with criticism by Daniel Batten, founder of CH4-Capital, a startup that aims to remove methane from the atmosphere, a task for whichhe believes bitcoin mining can serve a purpose.

"De Vries has a history of making predictions which have proven wildly inaccurate,"Batten posted on X(formerly Twitter).

"Rather than acknowledge error and move on, De Vries has simply pivoted his attack into other areas," Batten continued. "Now that it is clear Bitcoin's major energy source is not coal (as De Vries had falsely claimed) but hydro, Bitcoin is suddenly bad for using too much water."

Why the@BBCNewsarticle on Bitcoin and Water is a monument to journalistic laziness

The day after the Independent publish the results of a high quality independent study on Bitcoin, the BBC publish the junk-science of a known anti-Bitcoin lobbyist using…

— Daniel Batten (@DSBatten)November 29, 2023