A researcher at the University of Pittsburgh argues that concerns related to high electricity consumption by miners have no basis.

One of the most frequently mentioned disadvantages of bitcoin is its high power consumption. In May, the researcher Alex de Vries Netherlands published a report, claiming that the bitcoin network annually consumes as much electricity as Ireland, and the energy consumption of the bitcoin network continues to grow. His research also claims how this energy consumption will continue to rise. It may even reach 5% of the world’s energy.

But Katrina Kelly-Pitou, researcher from the University of Pittsburgh and specialist in electrical and computer engineering, holds opposite opinion. She published an article, "Stop worrying about how much energy bitcoin use," in which she debunked the myth of a future environmental disaster due to the growing electricity consumption of the bitcoin network (app. 30 TWh per 2017).

"Indeed, this is a lot, but not exorbitant. Banking consumes an estimated 100 terrawatts of power annually. If bitcoin technology were to mature by more than 100 times its current market size, it would still equal only 2 percent of all energy consumption."

According to her, any new technology, including data processing centers and computers themselves, can be called ineffective from the energy point of view. However, the challenge is not to renounce these technologies, but to use and develop them, while simultaneously looking for more effective energy solutions.

She also draws attention to the fact that some of the mining enterprises consume electricity from renewable sources, for example, in Iceland, where electricity is generated on geothermal and hydropower plants.

Kelly-Pitou infers that the entire banking industry spends more electricity than all cryptocurrency networks in total.

"So perhaps people should quit criticizing bitcoin for its energy intensity and start criticizing states and nations for still providing new industries with dirty power supplies instead."