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The world's bitcoin network uses enough cooling fans and manufacturing hardware for mining that it's expected to use as much as 7.67 gigawatts of power by the end of 2018. 
That's about as much power as the entire country of Ireland uses in energy — and it's expected to reach the same consumption level as Austria. 
In the next six months, we may see bitcoin using as much electricity as a major industrialized nation.

At this point, mining bitcoin requires such intensive, specific hardware that the only way for most people to get in on the crypto game is to simply purchase the coin via an exchange. But that doesn’t mean mining has slowed down. Rather, the opposite has been happening, giving environmentalists (and anyone but the most adamant cryptobros) cause for concern.

Between cooling fans, manufacturing hardware, and the outrageous, ever-rising energy costs needed to operate a bitcoin mining rig, the world’s bitcoin network is expected to use as much as 7.67 gigawatts of power by the end of 2018, according to new research and models. That’s one two-hundredth of all the electricity used on the planet. And that’s terrible.See the rest of the story at Business InsiderNOW WATCH: How a tiny camera startup is taking on Amazon and Google
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