Bitcoin Sustainability Report December 2017

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.

December Highlights

Now that December has ended, we can get a full picture of how Bitcoin has performed over the past year in terms of sustainability. December itself was far from a boring month, and many records were broken. The highlights of the past month are as follows:

  • Mining revenues increased by 127 percent.
  • Mining revenue from transaction fees increased by 297 percent.
  • The average fee per single transaction was $25.93.
  • The total network power consumption increased by almost 28 percent.
  • The average energy consumption per transaction was up by around 1 percent, and amounts to 259 KWh per unique transaction (enough to power 1 U.S. household for more than 8 days).

The full report is featured below:

DescriptionValueMonthly changeTrend
Mining Revenue
Total Blocks Mined5,02915.37%
Average Bitcoin Price$15,14694.01%
Average Price Volatility102.35%50.05%
Mining Revenue from Fees$291,846,659297.33%
Mining Revenue from Blocks Mined$1,014,330,837102.04%
Total Mining Revenue$1,306,177,495126.96%
Mining Costs
Total Costs of Mining$145,924,31727.69%
Percentage of Total Revenue11.17%-43.74%
Total KWh Consumed2,918,486,34427.69%
Network Statistics
Total Transactions Processed11,253,68426.01%
Average KWh Consumed per TX2591.17%
Average Fee per Transaction$25.93215.45%
Energy cost per TX (at 5 cents per KWh)$12.951.17%
Average Network Hashrate (GH/s)14,453,842,87620.63%
Average Network Effciency (J/GH)0.272.45%
Bounds
Economic Maximum KWh Consumed26,123,549,905126.96%
Technical Minimum KWh Consumed1,075,345,00524.63%


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 consumed as much energy as the Dominican Republic consumes over a full year.

It should be noted that the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index wasn’t officially launched until February 10, 2017. For this reason, the year to date performance is measured as of this date.

DescriptionValueDec vs. YTD
Mining Revenue
Total Blocks Mined49,47510.16%
Average Bitcoin Price$4,375346.19%
Average Price Volatility66.78%153.26%
Mining Revenue from Fees$541,679,74153.88%
Mining Revenue from Blocks Mined$2,911,553,35234.84%
Total Mining Revenue$3,453,233,09337.82%
Mining Costs
Total Costs of Mining$776,532,32918.79%
Percentage of Total Revenue22.49%49.68%
Total KWh Consumed15,530,646,59018.79%
Network Statistics
Total Transactions Processed92,167,14612.21%
Average KWh Consumed per TX169153.25%
Average Fee per Transaction$5.88440.99%
Energy cost per TX (at 5 cents per KWh)$8.45153.25%
Average Network Hashrate (GH/s)7,282,524,701198.47%
Average Network Effciency (J/GH)0.2798.94%
Bounds
Economic Maximum KWh Consumed69,064,661,86637.82%
Technical Minimum KWh Consumed5,661,920,01118.99%


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

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