If you don’t go blindly upwards the NFT inspiration stairs, you will stumble upon its important, unsettling downside, we cannot ignore. For me, it was like a shocking Revelation. In retrospect, I admit I had to figure out these connections on my own:
Mining Bitcoin and Ethereum is bad for the environment. Really bad. But…
There are many voices, opinions, and analyses addressing this issue. Indeed, every transaction causes work of heavy PC-farms mining cryptocurrency. One of the first persons becoming aware of this issue was Creative Technologist Memo Akten, who, together with Digital Artist Joanie Lemercier, analyzed it in series of articles:
They found out that a single NFT-artist, using Ethereum or Bitcoin, consumes insane energy and CO2 emission. Memo Akten provided even a calculation page for it:
Artists were shocked as well:
Negative rants on #NFT followed:
Indeed, if during a double-click you consume as much electricity, as
an EU resident’s electricity consumption for 3.5 weeks
then that’s indeed alarming.
Digital Communication is the best way to impart information, but also to read misinformation. Memo Akten stated some hours ago, somebody miscalculated a Carbon Footprint of a whole NFT Marketplace Foundation and said it was a consumption of a single NFT:
The online world seems to polarize and become a dichotomy:
NFT artists versus environmentalists?
NFT artists face tirades of their allegedly “irresponsible environment destruction in the sake of a quick buck” etc. Be aware of deeper contexts.
- Check calculations and be aware of possible disinformation, like pointed out by Memo Akten (follow him for essential read on this topic)
- Environmental protection is crucial. But I often observe this topic being just a camouflage of other resentments against NFT artists: unreflective hatred of new media, aesthetical skepticism towards digital art, begrudging of new artists looking for new ways of their artworks distribution (like: “the artists are destroying the world with art I don’t get, and they even earn money with this” kind of attitude)
- Not every Cryptocurrency is such consuming.
NFT artists aren’t those irresponsible money-hungry environment destroyers like they use to be depicted recently in Social Media. They do care. They look for alternatives. They act.
Read A Hybrid Manifesto, created by several leading Digital Artists:
you choose another CryptoCurrency.
Because if you are a real NFT artist or a real NFT collector, you collect art and not crypto-currency.
There are eco-friendly Cryptocurrencies like Tezos:
Digital Luminary, Artist, and Expert of the Art Scene Mario Klingemann even calculated that the energy consumption of a TEZ-based NFT is compared to sending a tweet:
For artists: choose an NFT-platform providing eco-friendly minting.
- OpenSea confirmed implementation soon.
- HicEtNunc is running on Tezos.
- Kalamint and Tezauction are coming as well:
For collectors: follow artists you like, and look for artists on eco-friendly platforms. This will influence the shift of NFT-art into platforms without damaging the environment.
Of course, it isn’t zero-damage, but in this case, mind your every tweet, you’re every iPhone app using a cloud, your every google mail being sent, they all cause damage, more than a Tezos-minted NFT. (I’m silent about flying planes, driving cars, and consuming electricity with your popcorn machine).
Environmentally conscious NFT art scene behavior also causes new exciting developments: HicEtNunc, a Tezos-driven NFT-platform, becomes one of the interesting places, crowd by open-minded and original artists. They are attracted by eco-friendly solutions and by other artists migrating to this platform — and I hope other platforms will follow their example and implement Tezos.
Because, indeed, wealth is nothing if your planet is broken. And NFT-Art-Scene cares a lot about it.
Whatever the skeptics might claim.