Billionaire ‘Shark Tank’ star Mark Cuban said today that Dallas Mavericks, the Cuban-owned NBA basketball team, will continue to accept Bitcoin regardless of the concerns around the asset’s alleged energy usage, as per a tweet this morning.
Bitcoin saves the environment
Unlike what the popular consensus seems to be, Cuban said that using cryptocurrencies help the environment instead. “We will continue to accept BTC/ETH/DOGE because we know that replacing gold as a store of value will help the environment,” Cuban’s tweet read, in response to electric carmaker Tesla’s decision to discontinue Bitcoin payments for its cars as of Wednesday.
We at https://t.co/VUydpLFzGh will continue to accept BTC/Eth/Doge because we know that replacing Gold as a store of value will help the environment https://t.co/bs7NvnJY8A and https://t.co/ELhbuLOBRV shrinking big bank and coin usage will benefit society and the environment https://t.co/zu08F0STEQ
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) May 12, 2021
The Mavs, as they are fondly called, became the first NBA team to accept cryptocurrencies as a payment method for stadium tickets and merchandise earlier this year. The move was an instant success—with the team raking in $122,000 worth of Dogecoin via sales within the first few weeks alone.
But the environmental concern of proof-of-work (PoW) cryptocurrencies, mainly those of Bitcoin, have heightened over the past year in line with rising prices. Ethereum, although still a PoW currency, uses a tenth of Bitcoin’s energy demands in comparison (and hence doesn’t attract as much criticism.
Christmas lights in the US require more electricity than some countries.
Can't wait for the "Let's end Christmas!" articles ?
— Pomp ? (@APompliano) May 13, 2021
PoW networks rely on entities that use massive amounts of computational energy (called miners) in order to validate transactions on and maintain such networks. They are rewarded in that network’s token—BTC or ETH, for example—for their work…and to also foot a massive electricity bill (computer rigs require a lot of capital to be maintained and run).
Such power usage has stirred up criticism.
A BBC report from earlier this year went as far as saying that Bitcoin used as much energy as all of Argentina with little data on the type of energy used. It is estimated that over 80% of Bitcoin’s energy requirements do, in fact, come from renewable sources like hydroelectricity—which proponents say nullifies the ‘bad for environment’ argument.
Still, firms like Tesla differ, “We are concerned about (the) rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel,” posted Musk on Twitter.
The move attracted widespread criticism from several quarters, with some stating that Tesla and Musk should have researched the energy allegations before their dictum.
“The utility of the exchanges made possible by Bitcoin will far exceed the cost of electricity used. Therefore, not having #Bitcoin is a net waste.”
– Satoshi Nakamoto
— Samson Mow (@Excellion) May 13, 2021
Still, as far as Cuban is concerned, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin remain the way to go. Perhaps it’s down to which billionaire’s opinion do you choose?