In March, a digital artist known as Beeple sold a piece of purely digital art for over $69 million at Christie’s, turning the art world on its head. However, the digital register where that work of art, known as an NFT, is housed emits more carbon into the atmosphere each year than most small countries.
SO, WHY ARE SO MANY PEOPLE WILLING TO JOIN THE NFT BANDWAGON?
Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are original, one-of-a-kind digital treasures that have swept the art world in recent months. They include a one-of-a-kind string of code that is kept on a blockchain, and their value changes according on demand.
Others can still look at the work online, but purchasers want to be able to claim ownership of the original, which was previously impossible with digital art before the invention of NFTs in the mid-2010s.
Dieter Shirley, CTO of Dapper Labs, the firm behind numerous popular blockchain platforms, told that “NFTs are the first way that blockchain technology has engaged with a lot of people.” “With NFTs, we can have meaningfully rare or unique treasures as part of our digital lives for the first time.”
Artists all over the globe were ecstatic: NFTs allow them to earn a large amount of money from their work, reach a global audience, and link a digital file to its author, insuring authenticity. With cryptocurrency’s value increasing, some believe there’s never been a better moment to invest.
“As contemporary society absorbs and integrates technology into every element of life, it’s only natural for artists, who are commentators on society, to respond and utilize the medium that’s at their fingertips to describe what’s occurring.” According to the New York Times, Max Moore, who oversaw the inaugural NFT auction at Sotheby’s, “I believe it is just a result of natural selection.”
However, several artists have recently begun to consider the medium’s environmental costs.
“With no travel required and a mostly digital distribution mechanism, this new model appears to have the potential to become a sustainable practice for artists,” said French artist Joanie Lemercier in a popular blog post in February. “That is, until you realize the extent of the existing blockchain’s environmental impacts: It is a DISASTER.”
This is because blockchain technology, which is utilized by cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, consumes a lot of energy and produces a lot of greenhouse emissions.
WHAT EXACTLY ARE NFTs?
Mining is a process that uses an enormous amount of processing power and energy to solve complicated riddles in order to “mint” a piece of art on the blockchain and become the legitimate owner. To construct these digital assets, Ethereum, the open-source blockchain that contains NFTs, employs a purposefully inefficient “proof of work” (PoW) mechanism.
Powerful computers can try an infinite number of new block creations each second. The first miner to find the solution receives their own unique asset, which is then put to the blockchain.
As the price of bitcoin rises and more computers attempt to solve them, the “puzzles” become increasingly complex to solve. To stay up, it needs higher computing power, larger warehouses, and more powerful cooling systems, as well as an increasingly expanding carbon impact.
This level of effort is deliberate; it fosters competition and protects against security concerns. However, the emissions produced as a result of the process contribute to the degradation of the Earth’s atmosphere.
Ethereum, which hit an all-time high last week, may be used to pay for an NFT. One ETH was worth $4,296.63 at the time.
Not only for artists, but for everyone, the financial benefits of selling an NFT are hard to deny.
For $2.9 million, an NFT of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s first tweet was sold. A $208,000 digital trading card of an amazing LeBron James slam was sold. Kings of Leon just made history by becoming the first band to release an album exclusively as an NFT.
The environmental consequences apply to all PoW-based NFTs, not just CryptoArt.
“Because NFTs use blockchain platforms,” Susanne Köhler, a blockchain sustainability researcher at Aalborg University in Denmark, “you may correlate their usage of the blockchain with the share of the blockchain’s environmental implications.”
“The environmental concern with NFTs isn’t the NFTs themselves, but the security of the network on which they’re constructed,” Shirley explained.
CRYPTO CLIMATE CONCERNS
The increased awareness of NFTs’ environmental effect coincides with mounting proof of crypto technology’s negative consequences.
Ethereum is now predicted to use 44.94 terawatt-hours of electricity per year, which is similar to the annual power usage of nations such as Qatar and Hungary. It emits roughly 21.35 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year, which is equivalent to Sudan’s carbon footprint.
According to the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index, the amount of electricity consumed to mine Bitcoin in a year is equivalent to that used to power Malaysia, Sweden, or Ukraine. According to a recent research, if Bitcoin becomes as extensively embraced as previous new technology, it might elevate the Earth’s temperature 2 degrees Celsius over historical levels.
The present price of the cryptocurrency, as well as its hypothetical future worth, have a role in determining total emissions.
Brendan McGill, co-founder and head of product design and engineering for carbon offset startup Offsetra, told that “what drives the pricing, part of it is related to public interest.” “The price rises every time Elon Musk tweets about something.”
ALTERNATIVELY, YOU MAY GO DOWN
Musk said a few months ago that, due to environmental concerns, Tesla will no longer accept Bitcoin as a form of payment for automobiles. When he revealed that the corporation is looking into other cryptocurrencies that utilize less energy each transaction, Bitcoin’s price plummeted.
“We’re concerned about the fast growing usage of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, particularly coal, which emits the most pollutants of any fuel. On many levels, cryptocurrency is a brilliant idea, and we believe it has a bright future, but it must come at the expense of the environment “he said
Crypto miners have been blamed for power disruptions in Iran, while a recent research indicated that the Bitcoin blockchain’s energy usage in China alone exceeds the Czech Republic’s and Qatar’s combined annual greenhouse gas emissions.
Attempts to measure the environmental effect of mining and NFTs have generated mixed findings, but experts agree that the blockchain’s overall carbon footprint is massive. Where do they differ? Whether the emissions can be traced back to individual NFTs or the entire blockchain.
Memo Akten, a digital artist, studied 18,000 NFTs and discovered that the typical NFT had a carbon footprint equal to more than a month’s worth of power use for the average European Union resident. The huge footprint is due in part to the numerous transactions associated with NFTs, such as minting, bidding, cancellations, sales, and ownership transfers.
These emissions are predicted to be ten times that of a typical Ethereum transaction.
In a blog post, digital artist Everest Pipkin stated, “This type of delighted wastefulness is, and I am not being exaggerated, a crime against humanity.”
When Lemercier put six pieces of art on the Nifty Gateway marketplace in November, he was ecstatic to see them sell out in less than 10 seconds. However, when the artist, who had been environmentally conscientious for years, inquired about his own CO2 emissions and energy use, he received no response, prompting him to do his own investigation.
“It turns out that my publication of six CryptoArt pieces utilized more power in 10 seconds than the entire studio consumed in the previous two years,” he said on his blog. “This lack of openness effectively sabotaged two years of work.”
LOOKING FOR A MORE LONG-TERM SOLUTION
Frustrated digital artists are spearheading the drive to make NFTs more sustainable, with plans to reward anybody who can come up with innovative ways to do so.
Damien Hurst, an artist, has released a collection of NFTs on the Palm sidechain, claiming that they are 99 percent more energy efficient than PoW systems.
“It’s new and art-focused,” Hirst remarked, “it’s the most ecologically friendly, and it’s faster and cheaper to use.”
One of the most serious challenges is PoW chains. Many artists are also attempting to raise awareness about Ethereum alternatives.
“If they don’t want to be linked with such an inefficient network, just kind of a wasteful network,” McGill said, “then they should certainly not mint NFTs on Ethereum or any other proof-of-work chain.”
Ethereum declared some years ago that it will abandon the PoW approach in favor of a “proof of stake” (PoS) mechanism that compensates users depending on how much bitcoin they currently own, decreasing computing work.
Because “proof of stake has essentially no emissions” because it doesn’t require mining, the switch to “Ethereum 2.0” may cut NFT energy use by 99 percent, according to McGill.
However, this shift has yet to occur, and the community is beginning to worry if it ever will.
“People are hesitant to utilize these alternative chains since chains come and go with the seasons. As a result, it would be a waste of time to publish all of your NFTs on a platform that no one would use in a year “McGill said. “A large development community is required for a lot of things, and the developers are all on Ethereum.”
“The implications of NFTs can be further minimised by establishing systems on ‘Layer 2’ rather than directly on the blockchain,” Köhler said. Layer 2 transactions are packaged together, resolved off the chain, and then brought back on the chain as a single transaction, resulting in a more efficient network.
The PoS concept has already been adopted by other markets. NBA’s Top Shot, a platform where basketball fans can buy NBA highlights as NFTs, is built on the Flow blockchain, which requires far less CPU power and hence emits far less emissions. And it’s worked: every time a new “Moment” becomes available on the site, hundreds of thousands of users try to purchase it.
“One parallel is to think of it in terms of gas automobiles,” Shirley explained. “‘Cars have a tremendous carbon impact,’ you could reasonably argue ten years ago. We must be more clear now that electric cars are a viable option: ‘Gas automobiles have a large carbon impact.’ Similarly, three years ago, you might have rightly stated, “NFTs waste a lot of power.” However, now that PoS blockchains are available, you should be more specific: ‘PoW NFTs waste a lot of power.'”
As a result, saying that all NFTs are equally hazardous for the environment is an oversimplification.
“It depends on the blockchain they utilize and how many transactions are resolved on it. The problem is more complicated than just asserting that everything is terrible “Köhler elucidates. “However, the environmental consequences of proof-of-work blockchains are enormous. Bitcoin mining alone is thought to consume nearly as much power as all of the world’s data centers at the moment.”
IMAGINING THE FUTURE’S PRACTICALLY POWERLESS ULTRA-DEVICES
Science has to come up with solutions quickly. A very promising project is provided by the Neutrino Energy Group.
In 2015, Japanese and Canadian scientists simultaneously discovered that neutrinos have mass, which means that they also have energy. This monumental discovery opened up a hitherto unexplored arena of energy production that is currently revolutionizing the global energy landscape.
Recently, the Berlin-based Neutrino Energy Group discovered a new form of nanoengineering that delivers materials capable of transforming the motions of the universe’s most ethereal particles into usable electrical engineering. With doped graphene and an unquenchable spirit of discovery, the Neutrino Energy Group is on the cusp of evolving neutrinovoltaic energy into a practical reality.
THE LAND OF ETERNAL MACHINES AND NEUTRINO ENERGY
It’s possible to say that the entire human species is nothing more than a framework for our machines to build on. They duplicate and enhance themselves using human intellect, and energy has always guided the trajectory of engineering innovation.
Devices that use less electricity and emit a steady stream of neutrino energy will be more “alive” than machines now in use. They will be more intelligent, connected, and robust. They will work together to construct an indestructible electronic web, of which the Internet of Things is only a sliver today.
The neutrino-powered gadgets of the future will have taken a genuine stride toward self-sufficiency, and, dare we say, life, by constantly pulling infinite power from the ether and doing highly data-rich tasks with the energy it now takes to operate a single light-emitting diode.
Doped Nanographene Represents the Cutting Edge of Nanoengineering
In the context of material engineering, “doped” refers to the process of removing certain atoms in a material and replacing them with other atoms. In the case of doped graphene, some carbon atoms are removed from a graphene sheet and replaced with other types of atoms.
2016 Scientists created a material called trilayer-graphene that consists of three ultra-thin sheets of doped graphene layered on top of each other. Researchers found that trilayer graphene was capable of amplifying kinetic energy to an almost unimaginable degree. Little did they know, however, that German energy researcher and Neutrino Energy Group founder Holger Thorsten Schubart had developed a nearly identical material nearly a full year earlier.
Neutrinovoltaic Technology Transforms Kinetic Energy From Neutrinos and other non-visible radiation into Electricity
In a patent filed in 2015, Schubart detailed a doped graphene technology that transforms the kinetic energy of passing neutrinos and other non visible radiation into electricity. Inspired by the confirmation that neutrinos have mass that also occurred in 2015, Schubart set out to develop a technology capable of converting the mass of these ethereal particles into usable energy.
While neutrinos are invisible and cannot be stopped by practically any material, it turns out that they possess mass, and anything that has mass also has energy. Having developed his own doped graphene nanomaterials long before the rest of the scientific establishment caught up, Holger Thorsten Schubart rapidly assembled the Neutrino Energy Group and tasked this unprecedented consortium of leading energy scientists and engineers with designing the world’s first neutrino energy devices.
Neutrinovoltaic technology is already fully functional in laboratory settings. According to Holger Thorsten Schubart, the day is rapidly approaching in which it will be possible to power low-consumption devices, like smartphones and tablets, with nothing more than the ethereal neutrinos that are constantly passing through everything we see.
Within a few short decades, the scientists and engineers at the Neutrino Energy Group envision a world in which every home and business is equipped with a neutrino energy production device that handles all daily energy consumption needs. Our current reliance on inefficient energy grids will be eliminated, current renewable energy technologies will become obsolete, and the path for innovative technologies like NFTS will be paved.
THE ENERGY GROUP NEUTRINO – FOR PEOPLE AND MACHINES
People and machines coexist in a delicate equilibrium, and the growth of the Internet of Things has us wondering where the line between “smart” and “analog” should be drawn. Ovens that don’t link to your smartphone will be considered odd by the future generation, while tiny electronics like smartphones and smartwatches will be fueled entirely by ethereal neutrinos within a decade or less.
The Neutrino Energy Group is focused on teaching and additional discussion regarding the influence that neutrino energy technology will have on the future growth of the human race and our usage of electronic gadgets, in addition to its core purpose of inventing new neutrinovoltaic devices.
“The Science of today is the technology of Tomorrow” says Neutrino Energy Group CEO Holger Thorsten Schubart.
It’s time to start envisioning a world 50 years from now in which our reliance on fossil fuels is a distant memory, but we haven’t yet experienced the pains and privation that a premature end to fossil fuel consumption would undoubtedly bring.
The Neutrino Energy Group is using infinite neutrino energy to make the fanciful machines of the future’s Internet of Things conceivable for the benefit of humanity’s future.