Blockchain: Energy & Environment challenges

Energy & Environment challenges

The technology of blockchain faces both technical and legislative obstacles. Building new blocks for the blockchain has an adverse environmental impact. Every time a new block is created or a transaction verified, the mining process consumes large amounts of electricity and mining equipment (The Economist, 2015) there by requiring more resources. Even trillions of attempts to fix the challenging puzzles are considered  as waste energy.

According to Global energy statistical yearbook 2019, renewable energy now cover 36% of the power mix in Europe, 26% in China and around 18% in the United States, India and Japan. Thus a solid 64% comes from nonrenewable energy in Europe and much more from other major economies. Such uses of energy come with a considerable carbon footprint. However, again precise estimates of this effect on the environment differ considerably due to the difficulty in determining how the electricity used to power blockchain.

The more individuals use blockchain-based programs; the greater the consumption of energy. The Economist (2015) pointed out if miners use the most effective technology, it could take up to two terawatt-hours per year to use electricity. For example in order to bring into view with simple comparison not necessarily apples to apples, the energy consumed by the Bitcoin network comparing it to another payment system such as VISA. According to ( 1 Bitcoin transaction is equivalent to 100000 visa transactions.

Therefore a more environmentally friendly mining method is required. Apart from energy a legislative obstacles also exist, one of which is regulation. A Stricter regulations can slowdown blockchain technology development.

Meeting these difficulties requires a community-wide agreement. Only then it will be feasible to thoroughly adapt the block-chain technology efficiently.