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Tesla to resume Bitcoin payments when mining shifts to clean energy, Musk reasserts

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has shared more details on when the company will likely resume Bitcoin payments.

Story highlights
  • Elon Musk took to Twitter to share Tesla's plans on resuming Bitcoin transactions.
  • The company stopped accepting Bitcoin payments in May, citing rising pollution through its mining.
  • It will now resume its use once Bitcoin mining is empowered by clean energy fuel.

Elon Musk has reiterated Tesla's earlier plans for Bitcoin. On Sunday, the technology entrepreneur said Tesla would resume Bitcoin transactions once it sees the use of clean energy for the mining of the cryptocurrency, resulting in less real-world pollution from its use.

The tweet was made after Tesla's recent decision to stop Bitcoin payments. The world's largest electric vehicle manufacturer had stopped accepting Bitcoin as payments in mid-May. The statement came within months of listing the cryptocurrency as a payment option for Tesla buyers.

At the time, the company cited the pollution resulting from the "rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions." In a statement tweeted by Musk, Tesla stated that the rapid surge in Bitcoin mining following its interest was mostly being met through the use of coal. It cleared that the fuel "has the worst emissions of any fuel," and for this reason, the company was suspending its use.

Its love for cryptocurrency did not die, though, as the company mentioned in its statement that it would restart Bitcoin payments once its mining shifts to clean energy use. Musk has reiterated the same in a recent tweet.

"When there's confirmation of reasonable (~50%) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing bitcoin transactions," the Tesla CEO cleared in the tweet.

The costly back and forth

Tesla's reversal on the acceptance of Bitcoin brought the value of cryptocurrency crashing down in the market. Several blamed Musk for market manipulation through these decisions, so much so that the notorious hacking group Anonymous sent a warning to the Tesla CEO to expose his alleged wrongdoings in this regard.

Though this does not necessarily mean that the Tesla CEO is on the wrong side of things. Musk has long been hailed as one of the biggest motivators of the cryptocurrency industry and has proved it time and again with its association with several of his firms. SpaceX, for instance, announced earlier this year that it would be flying a mini-satellite to the Moon in 2022 that has entirely been paid for through meme-based cryptocurrency Dogecoin.

Hence, Tesla's decision to stop Bitcoin use was likely a genuine response to the rising pollution associated with its mining. Being a clean energy company, it could not be associated with activities leading to increased emissions. The company still holds most of the $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin it purchased late last year and promised not to sell it following the Bitcoin payment ban.

Musk's tweet now adds more details to the scope of Bitcoin use by Tesla in the future. While the company had made it clear that it will resume Bitcoin transactions, Musk clears that it will only happen once around 50 per cent of its mining shifts to clean energy use. Tesla will also analyse the future trend for this mining and take a decision accordingly.

Also read: | Elon Musk's SpaceX in talks with airlines to provide in-flight Wi-Fi via Starlink