Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, reported on Twitter that the company has halted Bitcoin transactions due to concerns about the environmental effects of cryptocurrencies.
“We’re concerned about the rapidly growing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which emits the most fuel,” Musk wrote on Wednesday.
Bitcoin, the world’s largest market-based digital currency, dropped nearly 8% after the post, according to data from the Coinbase crypto-currency exchange.
“On many ways, cryptocurrency is a positive concept, and we believe it has a bright future,” Musk wrote. “However, it cannot come at the expense of the society.”
The Tesla and SpaceX CEO is a fervent supporter of cryptocurrencies, and this year he influenced significant increases in the prices of digital coins such as Bitcoin and Dogecoin.
Bitcoin emerged in January after Musk posted #bitcoin to his Twitter account. As Tesla announced in regulatory filings in February that it had purchased $1.5 billion in Bitcoin and that crypto-currency could be used to purchase Tesla’s electric vehicles, the Midas crypto touch was unleashed once more.
Since Bitcoin’s meteoric rise this year, environmentalists have expressed concern about the massive quantities of energy needed for Bitcoin mining. As mining plants consist of powerful computers – often thousands of them – it is critical to validate Bitcoin transactions in order to obtain new coins.
According to researchers at the University of Cambridge, Bitcoins use as much energy each year as the entire country of Argentina, with China responsible for roughly 65 percent of Bitcoin mining worldwide.
This carbon footprint contradicts Musk’s support for renewable energy. Although he refuses to give up Bitcoin.
Musk said in a tweet on Wednesday that Tesla would not sell any of its Bitcoin and that the electric vehicle manufacturer will continue to use cryptocurrency for transactions “as soon as mines transition to more sustainable resources.”
Tesla intends to create more energy-efficient cryptocurrencies, according to him.
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