Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies & the Climate Crisis

Mark Walsh

Abstract


Today, almost all of the world’s money is digital: data on a hard drive, numbers on a screen. Increasingly, electronic forms of payment have replaced paper ones, something which the recent pandemic has further accelerated. Thus, when we speak of digital currencies, it is important to be precise. Over the last two decades, as all our conventional notions of money and banking were migrating to the electronic domain, we have seen the rise of certain ‘alternative forms of currency’. These are variously called digital currencies or cryptographic (crypto) currencies, and unlike our traditional notions of money these have only ever had an online existence.

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