Bitcoin Sustainability Report November 2018

The Bitcoin price crashed again in November, leading up to the first significant drop in Bitcoin’s energy consumpion ever recorded. Although this may sound as good news, it’s not much more than a pyrrhic victory. In fact, it merely jumpstarts concerns regarding Bitcoin’s e-waste generation. According to F2Pool founder Mao Shixing 600,000-800,000 mining machines were shut down over the past few weeks. Given how these machines are hardwared for a singular purpose, becoming e-waste is their next stop. The highlights of the past month are as follows:

  • Mining revenues dropped more than 20 percent.
  • Mining revenue from transaction fees increased by 23 percent.
  • The average fee per single transaction was $0.54.
  • The total network power consumption decreased by almost 11 percent.
  • The average energy consumption per transaction was down by around 17 percent, and amounts to 684 KWh per unique transaction (enough to power 1 U.S. household for more than 23 days).

The full report is featured below:

DescriptionValueMonthly changeTrend
Mining Revenue
Average Bitcoin Price$5,435-16.09%
Average Price Volatility35.50%17.12%
Mining Revenue from Fees$4,336,67323.18%
Mining Revenue from Blocks Mined$318,138,799-20.96%
Total Mining Revenue$322,475,471-20.57%
Mining Costs
Total Costs of Mining$276,730,154-10.88%
Percentage of Total Revenue85.81%12.21%
Total KWh Consumed5,534,603,089-10.88%
Network Statistics
Total Transactions Processed8,093,1017.89%
Average KWh Consumed per TX684-17.39%
Average Fee per Transaction$0.5414.89%
Energy cost per TX (at 5 cents per KWh)$34.20-17.39%
Average Network Hashrate (GH/s)50,641,301,100-10.36%
Average Network Effciency (J/GH)0.152.71%
Bounds
Economic Maximum KWh Consumed6,449,509,424-20.57%
Technical Minimum KWh Consumed4,206,904,142-13.23%

Year to Date Performance

Apart from the changes in monthly performance, numbers on the current year to date (YTD) performance are found in the following table. These numbers show that Bitcoin has, so far, consumed as much energy as countries like Switzerland in 2018.

DescriptionValue
Mining Revenue
Average Bitcoin Price$7,916
Average Price Volatility63.29%
Mining Revenue from Fees$288,637,155
Mining Revenue from Blocks Mined$5,647,102,528
Total Mining Revenue$5,935,739,683
Mining Costs
Total Costs of Mining$2,924,729,712
Percentage of Total Revenue49.27%
Total KWh Consumed58,494,594,231
Network Statistics
Total Transactions Processed72,976,504
Average KWh Consumed per TX802
Average Fee per Transaction$3.96
Energy cost per TX (at 5 cents per KWh)$40.10
Average Network Hashrate (GH/s)39,849,565,924
Average Network Effciency (J/GH)0.18
Bounds
Economic Maximum KWh Consumed118,714,793,661
Technical Minimum KWh Consumed36,861,694,470

Disclaimer

Digiconomist is committed to promoting (the development of) sustainable blockchain technology. Blockchain protocols such as Bitcoin currently run on the energy-slurping proof-of-work algorithm (creating these proofs of work is better known as “mining”). The Bitcoin Energy Consumption index is a key tool that was created to provide insight into this energy consumption amount, and raise awareness on the unsustainability of the proof-of-work algorithm. The sustainability report uses historical data from the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index to summarize the sustainability progress and performance of the Bitcoin protocol over the past month.

For a daily estimate of Bitcoin’s energy consumption make sure to visit the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index.

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