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NextGen Magazine


Bitcoin Uses More Electricity than Oman

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Nov 27, 2017

Mining Bitcoin, the popular digital currency, takes escalating amounts of energy. When it first started, you could mine new bitcoins with just a home PC with a halfway decent processor. But the catch was that the more Bitcoins there were in the world, the more power the next Bitcoin would take to mine, making it more and more difficult to get new ones as time went on. This means that, today, Bitcoin mining uses more electricity than the entire nation of Oman, according to Fast Company. Bitcoin mining right now consumes 30.14 terrawatts of power (with one terrawatt being 1,000,000,000 kilowatts) per year, which comes to about $1.5 billion in electricity costs. Apparently the country that comes closest to this level of consumption is Oman, which consumes roughly 25 billion kilowatts annually. Bitcoin also consumes more energy than Ireland, (25 billion kilowatts), Bahrain (25 billion), Serbia (26.9 billion), Slovakia (28.6 billion) and Morocco (29 billion). 

To contrast, Google is said to consume about 5.7 terrawatt hours per year, which, is equivalent to the entire city of San Francisco. Substantial, but far from a nation state.