Episode 59 – Is Bitcoin Just Beanie Babies for Men?

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Do you imagine a tiny person with a pick axe when you hear about cryptocurrency mining? Are you frustrated that the only ways to learn more come either from crypto bros or slyly sponsored content? Then this is the episode for you 🙂

Elise breaks down what cryptocurrency is, the mysterious creator behind Bitcoin, and why crypto mining is known to be so energy intensive.

Does crypto spell danger for the climate, or can it be an innovative source of good? Our answer might surprise you. Other topics include volcanic love stories, avoiding scams, and nights at the roller disco.


Story: Bitcoin, climate, and the future of cryptocurrency (Elise)
Source: University of Cambridge via BBC

Sources:
Bitcoin emissions alone could push global warming above 2°C, Nature.com, Nov 2018
Bitcoin’s Impacts on Climate and the Environment, Columbia Climate School, Sept 2021
Bitcoin miners have returned to the record activity they had before China’s crypto crackdown—but they are still looking for a home, Fortune, Dec 2021
Bitcoin miners are dusting off Kentucky coal towns, spurred by state crypto tax incentives, TechCrunch, March 2022
Can Our Climate Survive Climate Change?, Reveal, July 2022
Research: Bitcoin Consumes Less Than Half The Energy Of The Banking Or Gold Industries, NASDAQ, May 2021
How Many People Own Bitcoin? 95 Blockchain Statistics, Exploding Topics, July 2022
Financial Inclusion on the Rise, But Gaps Remain, Global Findex Database Shows, The World Bank, April 2018
How America Banks: Household Use of Banking and Financial Services, FDIC, 2019
The Merge, Ethereum, July 2022
Ethereum Closes In On Proof-of-Stake After Sepolia Testnet Merge, The Defiant, July 2022
Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System, Bitcoin, 2008
The Environmental Impact of Cryptocurrency, Harvard GRC, Jan 2022
Electricity needed to mine bitcoin is more than used by ‘entire countries’, The Guardian, Feb 2021
Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index, University of Cambridge Judge Business School
Energy Production and Consumption, Our World In Data, 2020
Bitcoin consumes ‘more electricity than Argentina’, BBC, Feb 2021
Cryptocurrency and Its Impact on Environment, International Journal of Cryptocurrency Research, Dec 2021
What Happens When All Bitcoin Are Mined?, CoinDesk, Jan 2022
DigiCash, Wikipedia
The Climate Controversy Swirling Around NFTs, The Verge, March 2021
Argentina Bears Down on Crypto Miners Amid Power Shortage, CoinDesk, March 2022
Bit Gold, Investopedia, Oct 2021

The Dump

We’re watching Fire of Love and Stranger Things, and falling down at the DiscOasis roller disco in Central Park. Check out your local library’s cultural opportunities — if you’re in the NYC area you can get a ton of free tickets through the culture pass.

Check out Elise’s vintage shop page Heiss Vintage if you live in Austin and want to know when she’s doing pop-ups!


The World Is Burning bookshop is live! Help us come up with book list titles and bulk up our reading list.

Our World is Burning themed playlist is on Spotify.

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Thanks for listening!

Ep. 60 – Volcanoes and Water Towers World Is Burning

This week we’re taking a closer look at what happens when the government procrastinates on its homework. Olivia tells the story of the “white city” of Armero, Colombia, where a 1985 volcanic eruption resulted in the deadliest mudslides in human history. She recounts the haunting story of 13-year-old Omayra Sanchez, and how the tragedy highlights the need for robust emergency management. Then Elise looks into the ancient origins of water towers, some more recent horror stories, and why we should care about how the government regulates water safety. Other topics include Sally Rooney, having an Oscar Wilde quote for everything, and buying sweaters in a heatwave. Subscribe/follow/press the button to keep up with new episodes every Wednesday! You can also follow us @worldisburnin on Instagram and Twitter, and check out our website worldisburning.com for extended show notes including sources and photos. World Is Burning is hosted by Olivia Hamilton and Elise Nye. Our theme music is by Kaycie Satterfield, and our logo was made by Sonja Katanic. — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/worldisburning/message
  1. Ep. 60 – Volcanoes and Water Towers
  2. Ep. 59 – Is Bitcoin Just Beanie Babies for Men?
  3. Ep. 58 – Questionable Inventions – The One-Man Climate Disaster and Period Underwear
  4. Ep. 57 – The Multiverse – Destroying Electric Cars and Healing the Ozone Hole
  5. World Is Burning Presents: Bottle Episode – Daiquiris and Digressions with Nick Dolan