Bitcoin isn't exactly great for the environment. The network which it runs on requires a lot of energy for transactions. For example, one Bitcoin transaction takes as much energy as 10 households use in one week, and the entire network uses more energy than Bulgaria. Other large altcoins aren't much better, Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency uses as much power as some Mediterranean countries.
Some enthusiasts have come up with more environmentally friendly solutions for mining cryptocurrencies, including wind-powered mining rigs or even using a Tesla cars. But no one has done what a Dutch Organization, the Institute of Human Obsolescence (IoHO), has done. IoHO has gone to the extreme, by creating a way to harvest the heat released by the human body and using that to mine cryptocurrencies. Sounds crazy, but can our bodies really be enough to solve the cryptocurrency world's energy problem?
Manuel Beltrán told Motherboard,
In most cases, if some technology is possible to build, people just build it and start to use it without taking its ethical or socio-political implications into consideration. That's exactly the point we're challenging.
The adult human body produces 100 watts of power while resting and 80% of it is wasted through body heat. The IoHO's idea was to capture this body heat and turn it back into a viable energy source. The energy which is then created would be used to power the computers which would be mining for the cryptocurrencies.
IoHO says on average they are able to capture 0.6 watthours of energy from each human volunteer per hour. Using this number we can calculate that if we had 4,600 people lay still, 24/7 for a year, we could produce 1.2 bitcoins. At current Bitcoin prices, this would mean each person would get $3 for their year-long endeavor. This doesn't sound great, but currently IoHO is only able to capture less than 1% of human body heat if they were able to improve that percentage, the amount generated at the end of a year would be higher and fewer people would be needed.
This is only an experiment that may or may not have a future, as for right now miners are still left with their old-fashioned, non-renewable energy consuming mining rigs.
Do you think this is a possible solution for providing energy?