Ripple’s Chris Larsen wants Bitcoin sustainable and explains how

Rick Steves

“We need short-term solutions as well, even if a move away from PoW happened eventually. Bitcoin is and will remain hugely important for crypto globally. Bitcoiners – I know many of you may not believe this, but I’m not trying to work against you here.”

As the discussion over the sustainability of Bitcoin continues, Ripple Chairman Chris Larsen has made un update on his call for the #1 digital asset to move away from Proof-of-Work (PoW) and switch to Proof-of-Stake (PoS). “The time for change is now”, he said.

In 2021, Larsen published an op-ed calling for Bitcoin to consider a move away from PoW to a low energy validation method. His thoughts on the matter have evolved on this front, as he recognizes it is no easy feat.

The Ripple co-founder continues to believe moving to a low-energy consensus mechanism is the most climate-friendly long-term solution, but the ecosystem needs short-term solutions as well.

What if miners were incentivized to remove carbon from the atmosphere?

“Today, the US hosts ~40% of the hashrate. Climate-conscious miners like Gryphon Mining, Argo Blockchain, and Riot Blockchain strive to use 100% renewables and be responsible actors (shutting off power when grids are overloaded, etc.). I applaud their efforts.

“The time for change is now – as prominent capital market participants drive crypto liquidity, ESG and sustainability will only become more front and center. ETH (2nd largest market cap – for now) recognized this early on and is very close to switching to PoS.

“We need short-term solutions as well, even if a move away from PoW happened eventually. Bitcoin is and will remain hugely important for crypto globally. Bitcoiners – I know many of you may not believe this, but I’m not trying to work against you here.”

Chris Larsen argued that, with incredible talent and unlimited capital, the crypto space can turn this climate problem into a solution and suggested one: “what if miners were incentivized to remove carbon from the atmosphere?”

“Miners pledging 100% green energy use is a great start. But IMO, not a fool-proof *long term* solution because PoW simply incentivizes finding the cheapest energy, not what is the right thing to do. What’s to stop a petro-state like Russia from liquidating fossil fuel reserves?

“So even with responsible players, there will always be an incentive to seek out the greatest amount of the cheapest power (if renewables are prioritized/wanted and fossil fuels not – could suddenly turn the latter into a subsidized “cheap” energy source)”, he added.

The Chairman of Ripple Labs added that he spent one year and a half on the Bitcoin sustainability issue and invested nearly $90 million into climate-change fighting efforts – everything from green hydrogen, EVs, and carbon capture. He concluded by clarifying that Ripple is not involved in this campaign.

Although Ripple is not involved in the campaign, the firm is one of the loudest voices in the ongoing cryptocurrency sustainability pool. It has pledged to hit carbon net zero by 2030.

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