Bitcoin sinks 12% after Elon Musk tweets that Tesla won’t accept it as payment
CNN — The price of bitcoin sank about 12 percent early Thursday morning after Tesla CEO Elon Musk said his company was suspending plans to accept the cryptocurrency as payment for electric cars.
The price of one Bitcoin now sits around $50,900, according to cryptocurrency news website Coindesk.
Musk cited the cryptocurrency’s high environmental cost as reason for the move, after months of being bullish on it.
“We are concerned about rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel,” Musk said in a note posted on Twitter Wednesday. “Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future, but this cannot come at great cost to the environment.”
The environmental cost of mining — or creating — digital currencies has been well-documented for years, with the debate around them reignited in recent months as cryptocurrency-based tokens known as NFTs exploded in popularity.
Tesla and Musk have appeared fairly bullish on bitcoin for at least a few months, with the company disclosing in February that it had invested $1.5 billion in bitcoin and floating the ability to buy its cars using the cryptocurrency. Musk tweeted in late March that people “can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin.”
On Wednesday, Musk said Tesla still plans to use bitcoin after the currency finds cleaner energy sources.
Musk’s last tweet before his Wednesday bitcoin about-face was a poll asking followers if they wanted “Tesla to accept Doge.”
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