There has been growing pressure from many different angles over the past few years to make our lives more eco accessible, reduce our own carbon footprint, and make changes to our day to day so we can do our bit for the environment – but there are also many other factors in our day to day that make this that much harder, particularly if it comes from a direction, you perhaps weren’t entirely expecting. One of the big trends to hit this year came from the latest entry to the Ethereum blockchain – as crypto as a whole has only grown in popularity as its usage options are continuing to expand from online gaming options such as a list here of betting sites not on Gamstop that accept crypto, right through to big names like Telsa accepting it as a car payment. But how could a digital currency possibly be linked to any climate controversy?
(Image from time.com)
The issue being raised is around the new market of NFT’s, they serve as a platform to buy, sell, and collect digital goods essentially – whilst they’re pretty simple in theory, in practice the waters are a little muddied as experts have raised plenty of concerns around issues with ownership, and whilst there is some information that others have gathered to try and clear things up a little with guides explaining what NFT’s are, they’re still a little strange to understand. The latest controversy around them however is within whether or not they’re having an impact on the climate, or whatever that could mean in this instance.
Some had taken to exploring the different options as websites such as cryptoart.wtf were launched in order to help potential buyers or sellers explore estimated emissions associated with a particular NFT – the biggest example given had been the “Nyan Cat” animated image that sold earlier this year, it is perhaps iconic to some as a cat with a pop tart body flying through space with a rainbow trail, but information would suggest it has the same carbon footprint equivalent of an EU residents electricity usage for two months. It does raise some question around how this could possibly be taken into account, and how accurate any representation here is.
As a whole crypto has often fallen victim to reports of a negative impact on the environment given how the currency is mined with a higher power draw and the nature of how it is done too, but for the artwork side of things to also follow a similar issue with climate impact may be a little strange to some, and whilst the market is shrinking so soon after forming it may experience a second wind or have alternatives pop-up in its place, and once again raise many questions around whether or not there are better, more eco friendly options, or if this is just a part of the crypto market as known.