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Why does Bitcoin need more energy than whole countries?

Running the cryptocurrency Bitcoin requires more energy than New Zealand and Belgium put together. How can something virtual keep power plants around the world so busy? DW's Timothy Rooks looks into the numbers.

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11 Sep 2021
El Salvador has become the first country in the world to make Bitcoin legal tender, despite surveys showing widespread scepticism about the move. The government has invested more than $20 million in the cryptocurrency in recent days, saying it will open up access to banking for many Salvadorans. Bitcoin will be accepted for payments in parallel with the US dollar. Also today, millions of Americans have lost their unemployment benefits as several pandemic-era welfare programmes have expired.
11 Sep 2021
The value of Bitcoin has plunged by more than 10 percent after El Salvador on Tuesday became the first country in the world to accept the cryptocurrency as legal tender. The launch was marred by protests and technical difficulties with the digital wallet app, which had to be taken offline for several hours. Also today, we report on tourism businesses in the southwest of France that have benefitted from the recent spell of good weather, which has prolonged their summer season.
10 Sep 2021
On 7 September 2021, El Salvador became the first country to embrace bitcoin as legal tender. Consumer demand saw its brand-new cyber wallet system crash on its first day of use as the currency's value seesawed against the US dollar. While thousands of Salvadorans are already using the cryptocurrency for everyday transactions, hundreds have taken to the streets to protest with concerns about the safety and legitimacy of the cyber currency.
18 Sep 2021
In a bid to tackle soaring energy prices, Spain's government is to cut taxes on electricity and claw back billions of euros in what the prime minister has described as "excess profits". The cost to Spanish consumers has risen by 35 percent in the past year, as wholesale price rises have been passed on to households. Also today, we look at the situation of European economies ahead of the State of the Union address by Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
30 Sep 2021
The price of electricity in Spain has skyrocketed in recent months, leaving some consumers with difficult choices to make about their spending. The Spanish government has announced measures including a VAT cut and a windfall tax on energy company profits to try to combat the price increases, which have been triggered by the rising price of gas. Also today, the troubled Chinese property developer Evergrande faces a major debt deadline.
10 Oct 2021
The cost of gas and electricity has soared in countries across Europe, and prices are expected to continue climbing as temperatures fall in the coming months. A limited supply of natural gas and higher demand have pushed up prices for power companies, industry and consumers. James Waddell from research consultancy Energy Aspects tells FRANCE 24 how long the crisis is set to last, and how it might be resolved.
27 Sep 2021
Political and business leaders have committed more than $400 billion to the expansion of renewable and clean energy, the UN announced. They also vowed to dramatically expand access to electricity in developing nations.
16 Oct 2021
Thousands of Salvadorans march in San Salvador against the use of bitcoin in the economy and against a decree that ordered the dismissal of a third of the nation’s judges.
5 Oct 2021
It's the UK's worst fuel crisis in decades, with images of motorists forming long lines at fuel stations to secure scarce supplies damaging government credibility.
13 Oct 2021
As climate change contributes to more powerful Pacific storms, a new research center wants to better understand the threats they pose and utilize the energy they generate to help Japan reach zero carbon emissions.
14 Oct 2021
The International Energy Agency has long been accused of undermining climate action. Now, ahead of a global climate summit, it has called on governments to make stronger commitments.
14 Oct 2021
The European Commission is outlining a set of measures that would allow EU member states to keep fuel and electricity prices low.