Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index

The Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index provides the latest estimate of the total energy consumption of the bitcoin network. Find out everything you need to know about the site today.

What is the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index?

The Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index is a webpage found at Digiconomist.net. The page estimates the consumption of the bitcoin network, which consists of the cumulative energy requirements of everything on the bitcoin network.

You can view today’s current estimated electricity consumption for the bitcoin network. You can also track the energy consumption over time. To deep dive into a specific stats area, just click and drag anywhere on the graph and get more detailed daily breakdowns.

The Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index isn’t the only energy consumption graph listed on the official website. There’s also the Ethereum Energy Consumption Index, which offers identical service for the Ethereum network.

Network Statistics According to the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index

How much energy does the world’s largest proof of work (PoW) cryptocurrency network uses on a daily basis? How much electricity does it use in a year? Which country uses the equivalent energy of the entire bitcoin network in a single day? Here are all of the stats you can learn from the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index (stats accurate as of November 20, 2017):

  • Current Estimated Annual Electricity Consumption: 28.86 TWh
  • Annualized Global Mining Revenues: $6,906,460988
  • Annualized Estimated Global Mining Costs: $1,442,789,116
  • Country Closest to the Bitcoin Network in Terms of Electricity Consumption: Oman
  • Estimated Electricity Used Over the Previous Day: 49,056,938 kWh
  • Implied Watts per GH/s: 0.278
  • Total Network Hashrate in PH/s (1,000,000 GH/s): 11,462
  • Electricity Consumed Per Transaction: 291.00 kWh
  • Number of US Households That Could Be Powered By the Energy Usage of the Entire Bitcoin Network: 2,671,832
  • Number of US Households Powered for 1 Day by the Electricity Used for a Single Bitcoin Transaction: 9.82
  • Bitcoin’s Electricity Consumption as a Percentage of the World’s electricity Consumption: 0.13%

You can view further details about Digiconomist.net methodology for the above stats here, where They explain how stats were calculate and where they come from.

How Does Digiconomist Create the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index?

Creating the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index isn’t as straightforward as you might think. There isn’t some single registrar where all bitcoin energy consumption data is recorded.

Yes, you can easily find the total network hashrate for bitcoin. However, there’s no central registry with all the active machines or their exact power consumption.

Prior to the launch of Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index, energy consumption estimates for bitcoin typically included assumptions on what number of machines were still active and how these machines were distributed. This allowed statistics websites to arrive at a certain number of watts consumed per Gigash per second (GH/s).

Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index acknowledges this previous model. However, they claim it’s flawed because it underestimates the network’s energy consumption, disregarding factors like machine reliability, climate and cooling costs, and more.

With that in mind, Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index approaches energy consumption estimations based on the idea that miner income and costs are related. Here are the four steps they use to come up with their estimates:

Step 1) Calculate total mining revenues from the network in USD

Step 2) Estimate what part of revenue is spent on electricity

Step 3) Find out how much miners pay per kWh

Step 4) Convert costs to consumption

This calculation takes a number of variables into account. One of the most important variables is that 60% of revenue will be spent on operational costs, on average (used for step 2), and that for every 5 cents that were spent on operational costs, 1 kWh was consumed (used for step 3).

About Digiconomist

Digiconomist is the maker of the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index. That company’s website features a regularly-updated blog from the world of bitcoin mining. There are also reviews of cryptocurrency exchanges.

Digiconomist also has a tongue in cheek “Ethereum obituaries” section, where they explain that Ethereum has died 10 times. We’ve seen obituaries like this for bitcoin, where “experts” have repeatedly claimed that bitcoin is going to die – despite the fact that it continues growing.

Overall, Digiconomist describes itself as “a platform that provides in-depth analysis, opinions and discussions with regard to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.”

Conclusion

The Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index provides a detailed look at the global energy consumption of the bitcoin network. You can check the index to get an instant look at the overall energy consumption of bitcoin, including the number of US households that could be powered by the bitcoin network, or the country that best matches the bitcoin network in terms of energy consumption.

You can view the Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index chart yourself here: https://digiconomist.net/bitcoin-energy-consumption

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Digieconomist took their figures from the article in Motherboard, which didn’t say what was consumed but what could be consumed for miners to be break even. Bitcoin is still cheaper, for what it is, than the present alternative if you look at total carbon footprint (like looking at how much oil it takes to make an electric car in comparison to keeping your current car).

    If you compare the carbon footprint of Visa and Mastercard alone, they are much more wasteful than Bitcoin mining.

    • I would also question your cost per GH, Antminer is much less, and miners will use the most efficient gear they can given it’s cost. Your electricity cost is also low — where do you get 0.05/kw?

      A more accurate way to estimate electricity is look at miner efficiency * total hashrate. Mining revenue is based on bitcoin price, not electricity cost — your model breaks down when the price fluctuates (which is a common theme with cryptocurrencies).

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