Now that Ethereum has completed its Merge and gone from a proof of work (PoW) module to proof of stake (PoS), many environmental groups want bitcoin to do the same. Several have formed together to establish an initiative called “Change the Code, Not the Climate” as a means of pushing bitcoin more towards less energy-intensive methods of extracting units.
Change the Code Seeks to Change BTC Forever
$1 million has been spent on the Change the Code campaign. Greenpeace is also launching a new petition calling for Fidelity Investments to advocate for a major electrical change in the bitcoin system. Fidelity has become one of the biggest institutions in support of bitcoin and has taken quite a bit of flak in recent months for allowing retirees to invest their funds into crypto assets.
Michael Brune – director of Change the Code – explained in a recent interview:
With fires raging around the world and historic floods destroying lives and livelihoods, state and federal leaders and corporate executives are racing to decarbonize as quickly as possible. Ethereum has shown it’s possible to switch to an energy-efficient protocol with far less climate, air, and water pollution. Other cryptocurrency protocols have operated on efficient consensus mechanisms for years. Bitcoin has become the outlier, defiantly refusing to accept its climate responsibility.
Change the Code launched last March, meaning it’s now been active for seven months. The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness about the planet’s ailing condition and to push for social change that will lead energy use in a newer, greener direction.
The Merge is an event that finally occurred in mid-September. One of the big things that it’s allegedly done is remove the notion of mining from the Ethereum blockchain, thus transferring it over to a staking-only module. In addition, The Merge is slated to have brought down gas fees and made the ETH network considerably faster.
Brune isn’t alone in his push for bitcoin to follow ETH’s lead. Ken Cook – president of the Environmental Working Group – explained in a statement:
Ethereum has proven it’s possible to take the leap and change its protocol to a less electricity-intensive method by switching to proof of stake and dramatically lowering its energy use and the greenhouse gas pollution associated with dirty protocols like proof of work. It’s time bitcoin and its biggest investors take similar steps to reduce its heavy reliance on dirty electric grids and cheap fossil fuel energy sources or risk being the cryptocurrency of the past.
Following in ETH’s Footsteps?
Rolf Skar – special project manager at Greenpeace – said:
We’re in a climate crisis, and everyone has a responsibility to act. With Ethereum’s move to an energy-efficient protocol, it’s time for bitcoin to change. Companies promoting and profiting from bitcoin, like Fidelity Investments, BlackRock, PayPal, and Block, have a responsibility to be part of building a better, climate-friendly bitcoin.