Ethereum Energy Consumption Reduction – According to researchers, the second-largest cryptocurrency in the world, Ethereum, has effectively reduced its emissions by 99.99 percent following an extraordinary experiment to abandon power-hungry mining in favor of a new strategy. However, analysts claim that users of Bitcoin, the most popular digital currency that lacks a central authority to guide development, have little appetite for such a move.
Ethereum, like Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies, previously relied on “proof of work” to protect its network, which required computers to carry out enormous amounts of computation in order to “mine” new money and validate transactions. Huge amounts of electricity are used in this process. However, in September 2022, Ethereum made the switch to a novel approach termed “proof of stake” during a period of transition known as the Merge.
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The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) has provided comparable data for Ethereum after doing the same for Bitcoin during the previous four years. A “staggering” decrease in electricity use has been achieved by the experimental update, according to project collaborator and University of Cambridge professor Alexander Neumüller.
In the new system, validators deposit money with the network to obtain the authority to validate transactions and get rewards rather than employing computer hardware to mine new currency. The Ethereum Foundation, a non-profit organization that controls the development of Ethereum, predicted that the Merge would reduce energy consumption by 98%, but the results were uncertain because nothing similar had been tried before.
Ethereum Energy Consumption
Since its inception in 2015, Ethereum has used more energy on average, the same as how bitcoin has. Data from CCAF shows that in 2021, it consumed 16.4 terawatt hours. It had already used 17.6TWh on September 14, 2022, the day before the Merge, and was on track to use 21.4TWh by the end of the year.
According to current projections from the CCAF, Ethereum will only use 6.6 gigawatt hours of electricity annually, or roughly 2000 ordinary UK households. In contrast, Ethereum used 58.3 TWh from the time of its launch until the Merge, which is about as much energy as Switzerland uses in a year.
Neumüller claims that given the size of the challenge, success was far from guaranteed. He cites the example of changing a jet engine in the middle of a flight as an example that is frequently utilized. The execution was excellent. Nobody was certain of what would occur.
According to certain analyses, even though Ethereum’s power usage has decreased, the hardware that used to be responsible for it is now being used for other things. Kyle McDonald adds that many angry miners who were left with extremely expensive, specialized hardware and no source of revenue decided to continue harvesting other coins. Kyle McDonald conducted his own research on the energy utilization of the Ethereum network before the Merge.