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Dispelling Environmental FUD on Bitcoin with Daniel Batten

Feb 18, 2024

Dispelling Environmental FUD on Bitcoin with Daniel Batten

Dispelling Environmental FUD on Bitcoin with Daniel Batten

Key Takeaways

In this episode of the Stephan Livera podcast, Daniel Batten, Managing Partner of CH4 Capital, delivers an incisive critique of the prevailing misconceptions surrounding Bitcoin and its environmental impact. The conversation navigates through the biased media portrayals, the misinformed methodologies such as the "per transaction" energy usage, and the outdated data that skew public perception against Bitcoin.

Daniel's background is intriguing as it contrasts with the typical Bitcoin journey. His initial skepticism stemmed from environmental concerns, but a deep dive into the subject revealed that much of the anti-Bitcoin rhetoric was built on shaky ground, employing selective and outdated data, incorrect methodologies, and a lack of apples-to-apples comparison with other industries.

A significant part of the discussion centers on Cambridge's CCAf model for Bitcoin's energy consumption, which Daniel points out is sorely outdated and fails to account for the increasing number of miners operating off-grid with renewable energy sources. He debunks the myth that Bitcoin primarily relies on fossil fuels, revealing that its energy usage is more than 50% sustainable, contrary to the mainstream narrative.

Furthermore, Daniel's submission to ESMA emphasizes the need for a balanced and informed approach to Bitcoin's environmental assessment. He argues that it is critical to consider both the negative and positive externalities and the trajectory of Bitcoin's energy mix, which is trending towards more sustainable sources.

The conversation also touches on Bitcoin's potential to be a leading force for environmental good, through its capacity to turn pollution into power, particularly by converting methane emissions into electricity, and its role in stabilizing the power grid through demand response services.

Best Quotes

  1. "A lot of the anti-Bitcoin environmental narratives really stood on pretty shaky ground." - Daniel Batten explains the weak foundations of the arguments against Bitcoin from an environmental perspective.
  2. "It's like someone's got it in for Bitcoin and they want to malign it. Who would want to do that, I wonder?" - Daniel ponders the motivations behind the negative portrayal of Bitcoin in the media.
  3. "More than 50% of Bitcoin's energy usage [is] sustainable... that means it's by far the leading industry in the world in terms of sustainable energy use." - Daniel challenges the commonly held belief that Bitcoin is predominantly powered by fossil fuels.
  4. "Bitcoin can do it without generating carbon credits, can do it organically just simply by making some choices about what it chooses as its power source." - Daniel illustrates how Bitcoin mining can have net positive environmental benefits.


The episode with Daniel Batten is a masterclass in dispelling the myths surrounding Bitcoin and the environment. The intricate analysis provided by Daniel not only challenges the status quo but also presents Bitcoin as a potential leader in the sustainable energy revolution. The conversation highlights the importance of staying informed and the responsibility to correct misinformation, as the future of Bitcoin may hinge on the public's understanding of its true environmental impact.

The overarching message is clear: Bitcoin is not the environmental villain it has been portrayed as. Instead, it offers innovative solutions that could significantly benefit the environment. Looking ahead, it is crucial for Bitcoin advocates to engage in thoughtful discussions, armed with accurate data and an open mind, to ensure that the public narrative reflects the nuanced reality of Bitcoin's relationship with our planet.


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