Elon Musk said in 2021 that Tesla would accept Bitcoin payments once miners were using roughly 50% clean energy sources “with positive future trend” — a benchmark that may have recently been met.
In a Sept. 14 thread on X (formerly Twitter), Bloomberg analyst Jamie Coutts reported the percentage of Bitcoin (BTC) mining energy coming from renewable sources had exceeded 50% with “falling emissions plus a dramatically rising hash rate.” According to Coutts, the push toward renewable energy sources was the result of miners dispersing from China in the wake of the country’s mining ban starting in 2021, as well as certain nations turning to mining to “monetize stranded and excess energy.”
Sustainable Energy Sources Rise >50%
Falling emissions plus a dramatically rising hash rate can only mean one thing; Bitcoin mining is consuming more sustainable energy in its mix. pic.twitter.com/AGXrKWDWuI
— Jamie Coutts CMT (@Jamie1Coutts) September 14, 2023
Countries investing in BTC mining include El Salvador — which has also recognized the cryptocurrency as legal tender since 2021 — Bhutan, Oman and the United Arab Emirates. The 50% energy benchmark could mean a greater move toward adoption by one of the biggest companies in the world.
Musk — the CEO of Tesla, owner of X and founder of SpaceX — announced Tesla would stop accepting BTC payments in May 2021, citing the “rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions” at the time. Since establishing a sustainable energy source threshold of 50% for when the firm would resume payments, Musk acknowledged that there was a positive trend toward green energy sources but hasn’t changed Tesla’s policy.
The Tesla CEO did not appear to have publicly announced any move to resume BTC payments. At the time of publication, the price of Bitcoin was $26,572, having risen more than 2% in the last seven days.