Can Safe Network become the Green alternative to Bitcoin?

Can Safe Network become the Green alternative to Bitcoin?


Since Safe can be compiled, and run on ARM processors, I think the answer is yes. I also believe that this is one of the biggest marketing potentials of the network. Even right now I run the test-nets on a low powered mini intel PC. Farming is not like mining, farming uses way less power. Even now, with an unoptimized network, Safe is faster than the BTC network.


I’d say yes and it could also result in a greener internet as a whole too.

As the network is secured by nodes doing the useful work of storing and retrieving data, this is a huge benefit. While people argue that the cost of securing bitcoin through proof of work is worth it, it would surely be better if there was a secondary, useful, output of all that processing.

Given less copies of data would exist on safe network due to deduplication, it is an immediate win for a more efficient Internet too. Combined with far more effective caching of immutable data (read once, cache forever) less energy and resources will be expended retrieving and delivering data. Given spam will also be less feasible (due to even tiny storage costs), there will be less wastage here too.

Maybe even the apps themselves will become more efficient, due to the inherent design choices. More work can be done on the client, allowing small/light devices to use spare capacity to complete tasks, instead of boxes in data centres. Given farmers will be encouraged to use spare space and devices too, more efficiencies pile on.

So, I’d argue it would be much greener all round.


Not sure if anyone remembers but there was this old diagram describing how Maidsafe was going to deliver safe mail to an inbox where if the mail being sent from an account isn’t being opened across recipient mailboxes then the sender could not send more mail immediately as they are likely a spammer.

This would reduce network traffic as apparently a lot of internet traffic is complete waste because of the high degree of spam email and then reduce spam in everyone’s mail boxes.

Always thought that was a cool idea.


I don’t have evidence, but I think eliminating trackers and advertising will have an even greater impact based on the amount of extra bandwidth consumed by pages which employ them. If it killed the entire industry, even wider benefits!


I just feel that sooner or later governments will shut BTC down, not because of it being decentralised but because of how wasteful it is. Once this happens a greener crypto will overtake the number 1 spot and other greener ones will rise to the top also.


I have to respectfully disagree. There is already info or maybe just a narrative coming out about Bitcoin using excess or “waste” energy, like the gases being burned off at oil drilling sites? And being used to power the computation for bitcoin mining. Also that bitcoin mining requires cheap energy so mining in cold climates or near geothermal etc or maybe peoples roof top solar energy could be sourced to a mining pool. Whether it is true I have no idea but again it’s at the least a narrative being pushed that many will just accept to be true.

On the flip side if bitcoin truly is extremely wasteful and expensive then the powers that be, whether it’s governments or oil companies, would be more well poised to get over that barrier to mining. If you think of BTC as digital real estate and that is also something else being pushed, with its hard cap it gives a sense of complete FOMO.

The tax hike on capital gains might end up just making everyone bigger HODLers too where instead of selling BTC people just borrow against it similar to a home loan, no tax incurred.

It’s obviously hard to say what is really true but I just think it’s beyond that point of being banned. Maybe it’s used as FUD to push the price down or a segment of the industry is over regulated but I just can’t see it being banned.


I think what will happen to bitcoin is an interesting question and the more I think about it the harder it seems to predict. Ignoring trying to predict the actions of governments, it seems hard to predict even just based on the economics and current trends.

For example, we have competition among miners that results in higher energy consumption, which translates into higher transaction costs.

This affects demand, reducing the number and increasing the size of transactions among bitcoin holders, traders etc. which I can see both causing centralisation of mining (through consolidation, driving for efficiency) and centralisation of demand (fewer holders of larger amounts).

I don’t say that’s correct but it looks bad for bitcoin in the long term. Centralisation reduces its utility, its value becomes capped by reduced demand, and its security can also become more suspect through mining consolidation which further reduces demand.

That is bad enough, but put this in a competitive environment and you have flight to whatever is better. I don’t know enough to give examples of this in the past but there must be many.

So I don’t think bitcoin will necessarily be banned, but I think it could well fail anyway. No timescales though! :crazy_face:


Yes I’ve noticed that line of messaging recently too, and I’m sure it’s a slightly desperate PR move. The thing is, if it was easy to generate electricity from oil well gas burn-offs someone would have done it by now. Typically the environment makes it very expensive. On solar, the energy intensity you need to mine bitcoin at scale would require an awful lot of solar panels, and Icelanders are already complaining that too much of their geothermal power is becoming commandeered by miners. So I think it will continue to happen where there’s cheap coal and few regulations (China) for a long while yet.


It doesn’t matter how green the energy is that is being used to mine bitcoin. The bottom line will always be that this green energy could always be used to replace dirty energy so even if green energy is used to mine bitcoin that’s energy going to waste. I think governments, and people, are becoming more and more environmentally aware and this will do huge damage to bitcoin (not crypto) and its price sooner or later. It’s simply a matter of when. Once this happens it won’t be long before green crypto takes over bitcoin and bitcoin will become ancient history. I think this event will drive Safe Network up (both adoption and price) even if it won’t be in the lead.


I thought the same thing but if the mining rig is right there then you don’t have to transfer energy long distance you just need internet. So I’m not so sure how connected to the grid it necessarily has to be.

I completely agree I’m just not sure it will matter to most. Most people are just after number go up and Bitcoin has the lions share of that. Unfortunately.


The electricity generation isn’t difficult, it’s making use of it that is. The level of generation and the lifespan of the projects are such that it isn’t economical to run transmission lines to these areas. So that’s where the idea of using the energy on-site emerges.
Another thing to note is the positives of having an incentive beyond regulations to burn this gas, which is worse for the environment if vented directly into the atmosphere without burning.

I’d say that’s overfly simplified, at least until we have a much greater capacity for energy storage. If there is not enough ‘regular’ electricity demand to consume this supply the energy is not wasted by mining, rather the capacity is wasted by not mining. And capacity needs to be much larger than ‘regular’ demand with renewables due to their intermittency.


Yes, economically I meant, because you’d need to store the gas on a rig or nearby and build a small power plant there too. If the value of bitcoin continues to rise it could be worth it, but it still seems like a sticking plaster to cover up bad engineering fundamentals (deliberate inefficiency) to me.

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I’m no expert but my understanding is the gas is piped directly to generators. No storage or power plants involved.

“Oil and Gas companies are taking advantage of huge cost savings on fuel by utilizing natural gas generators that burn raw gas as it comes out of the wellhead”


Thanks for the link. I’m also no expert, but I’d assumed you’d need a steady flow of gas to power a power plant/generator, hence the need for storage. From the link they use a backup store of propane if pressure gets low. I guess someone needs to set up a test rig, see how it works out in the real world.

They’re already doing it

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Cool - looks like very early days though.

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Ya, I think that’s the case. Not sure if much beyond the prototype / proof of concept phase.

Can? It IS a green alternative to Bitcoin.

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Haters of Bitcoin always bring up the energy FUD when the price starts to pump. I would say bitcoin is far more energy efficient than the Fiat system. I can’t remember where I heard this, but someone said on a podcast that people leaving their xbox’s on standby in the USA uses more energy every year than Bitcoin.

Regarding SAFE as an alternative to Bitcoin.

  1. Whats the monetary policy of SNT?

  2. How many SNT will there be in total? Whats to stop MAIDSAFE printing more in the future?

  3. Can a user verify the supply?

These are all things Bitcoin maximalists will want answers to.