Published on : 2017-05-16 23:12:27

It would wipe out mining companies multi-million dollar investments in custom mining hardware. Bitcoin s current mining algorithm is based on computing a supermassive number of cryptographic hash functions. Switching to an alternative mining algorithm would also be controversial among traditionalists and would be strongly opposed by miners. Such a step is not impossible, but it seems unlikely to happen any time soon. Some exotic algorithms being floated among Bitcoin users might substantially decrease the amount of power Bitcoin uses, but there isn t much enthusiasm for them right now.

If any one country tries to force a change, mining operations would simply flee to another jurisdiction how much hash for 1 bitcoin. But other cryptocurrencies have been exploring alternatives. So the energy cost of Bitcoin is tied to its cash value, not its supply (though the supply and the value have a relationship, obviously). That means that if the price of Bitcoin crashes and miners stop mining, we ll still get one block every ten minutes, even if there s only one miner left, using as much electricity as a string of Christmas lights. Bitcoin Gold is a recently created variant of Bitcoin that uses a memory-hard mining algorithm that might prove to be less power hungry—though it would still consume huge amounts of juice.

Changing Bitcoin by regulatory fiat would require a coordinated global regulatory effort, which doesn t seem likely to happen any time soon. There is a similar (but different) dynamic in play for the reward for block-processing. .Kin.

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