Tesla has stopped accepting bitcoin as payment for its cars over fears it will contribute to greater consumption of fossil fuels, according to a statement, CEO Elon Musk. tweeted Wednesday. Tesla had just started accepting bitcoin at the end of March.
Musk also said Tesla will no longer sell the $ 1.5 billion bitcoin stash purchased earlier this year. Tesla sold some of that bitcoin in the first quarter of 2021, which ultimately helped bolster the company’s quarterly profits.
Tesla said it would resume accepting bitcoin (and consider selling more of it) once the bitcoin mining process “shifts to more sustainable energy,” the statement said. The company “is also studying other cryptocurrencies that use
“Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a bright future, but it can’t come at a cost to the environment,” Musk’s statement said.
Bitcoin consumes as much electricity each year as the Netherlands, according to one estimate. All of this energy has a huge carbon footprint. And there is no simple solution because the blockchain on which the cryptocurrency is built is intentionally inefficient in energy. This contradicts Tesla’s mission to “accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”
Musk also launched another cryptocurrency, Dogecoin, which Tesla has not invested in. Musk called Dogecoin, which was invented as a joke to satirize Bitcoin, his favorite cryptocurrency and ” people’s crypto.“The value of the cryptocurrency plummeted after Musk called it a ‘scramble’ on Saturday Night Live. Bitcoin’s value also fell about 4% after Musk’s tweet today, to $ 52,593.46 at 6:21 p.m. ET from $ 54,829.14 at 6:06 p.m., according to Coindesk.
With reporting by Justine Calma and Elizabeth Lopatto