Tesla Pauses Bitcoin Payment for Car Purchases, Citing Environmental Impact

Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced on Wednesday the company has “suspended vehicle purchases using Bitcoin.”

The statement from Musk says the company is “concerned about rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal,” calling it the “worst emissions of any fuel.”

The majority of Bitcoin miners are in China, where coal is predominantly used still as fuel for electricity. Check out the chart below via BBC News:

“Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future, but this cannot come at a great cost to the environment.”

Tesla previously announced it had invested $1.5 billion in Bitcoin, while during its Q1 the company announced it had sold some of its stake for $272 million in proceeds. The company says it will “not be selling any Bitcoin and we intend to use it for transactions as soon as mining transitions to more sustainable energy.”

The statement from Musk says the company is “also looking at other cryptocurrencies that use less than 1% of Bitcoin’s energy/transaction.”

Tesla started to accept Bitcoin payment for its vehicles back in March, but that is no longer possible on its website.

Earlier this week, Musk polled his readers to ask if the company should accept the cryptocurrency Dogecoin, which was featured during the CEO’s hosting of SNL on the weekend. SpaceX, Musk’s other company, announced on Sunday it would launch a Canadian satellite to the moon named DOGE-1, paid for entirely with Dogecoin.

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[via Tesla North]

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