Reduce issuance (yes, again)

tldr. We have an ethical obligation to minimise our environmental cost – especially when a solution is so readily available to us.

Around the time we were discussing the last issuance reduction the hashrate of the network had increased to 23 TH/s. It is now over 200 TH/s.

What is the cost?

It looks like the best cards, overclocked, can achieve a per watt hashrate of 0.28 MH/s. That correlates to a lower bound for network power draw of 714 MW. That places the Ethereum network somewhere above Ethiopia in terms of power consumption.

Ok, saying that the network consumes as much power as a country of 100m is perhaps not that meaningful. What it should at least mean, though, is that we take the issue of our external costs seriously.

What security?

Issuance is the control we have over the supply of hashing power. By not managing our demand we encourage the growth in supply. This is counter-productive for security as the real danger is hashing power at a scale that can threaten the network. It's better all around if new graphics cards go back to playing Call of Duty (or whatever, i'm old) – and the gamers will like us for it too.

Submitted January 28, 2018 at 02:16AM }
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