Is it possible to go from being a bitcoin lover to a bitcoin hater? For one German software developer, that is exactly what happened. Moritz Schmidt recently donated more than one million euros to Europe’s Green Party in the hope that they will become powerful enough to ban bitcoin and crypto mining in the future.
Schmidt Suddenly Doesn’t Care for BTC
Schmidt is a confusing figure in the sense that at one point, he made quite a bit of money earning and trading BTC. He says that he purchased a few thousand worth back in the year 2011, but from there, the price of BTC crashed and caused much of his money to vanish into thin air. Nevertheless, he decided to continue investing and playing the crypto game, and from there, he managed to rake in quite a bit of digital dough by trading BTC up through its “bubble year” of 2017.
However, during this time, Schmidt says that he learned about bitcoin’s allegedly destructive side. He says he found out how much energy bitcoin mining consumed, and this knowledge filled him with fear and concern. He believes that the cryptocurrency arena, while prominent, ultimately needs to go considering how much damage it could potentially do to the planet through its increased energy usage.
In an interview, he states that while he thought long and hard about donating to a particular environmental cause, he ultimately felt that donating his money to a political organization/ party would do the trick and lead to stronger results, as they could potentially implement the right regulations to ensure the atmosphere remained safe in the future. He explains:
Being an energy hog is built into the bitcoin system… I do not think regulation will do anything unless it crashes the price down to levels that make bitcoin uninteresting as an asset and unusable as a global currency. I believe that, in effect, bitcoin will need to be banned.
Environmentalists have been extremely worried about the use of energy when it comes to bitcoin mining operations. The idea is that the higher the price goes, the more expensive it becomes to extract, and with bitcoin topping $50,000 and $60,000 in recent weeks, you can imagine just how much electricity is needed to produce more coins.
It is widely argued that bitcoin mining now uses more energy than what is needed to power countries such as Iceland and Argentina. It has also been said that the crypto mining carbon footprint is equivalent to that of Las Vegas, Nevada.
Still Made a Lot of Money
Despite his concerns, Schmidt claims to have made a solid amount from trading BTC in the past, saying:
I have benefitted immensely from the bitcoin bubble. It has been a while ride, and the proceeds are unearned riches really. I have been sort of waiting for the right opportunity to donate a larger sum.