6. Bitcoin mining consumes more electricity than 159 countries including Ireland and most countries In Africa.
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency created in 2009 by an unidentified person who goes by the alias “Satoshi Nakamoto.” This decentralized digital currency is underpinned by blockchain, a public distributed ledger which records transactions. The participants in the Bitcoin network sign off on transactions in a block. It involves computers completing complex cryptographic problems, and people who verify blocks are rewarded with freshly created Bitcoins. This process is known as “Bitcoin mining.”
Since mining requires computers to complete the tasks and earn Bitcoins, Bitcoin miners are turning to more and more powerful computers. These computers, in turn, consume a great amount of electricity. At present, Bitcoin transactions use so much energy that a single trade could power a home for almost a month.
Research conducted by energy tariff comparison service PowerCompare.co.uk has revealed that the energy spent on mining Bitcoins globally has exceeded the amount used by 159 countries. Using statistics from Bitcoin and cryptocurrency data provider Digiconomist, PowerCompare.co.uk estimates that 29.05 TWh of electricity was used to mine Bitcoin in the year 2017. In comparison, Ireland uses only 25 TWh of electricity every year. (1,2)
7. The population of kangaroos in Australia is twice as much as the human population of Australia itself.
Kangaroos are the most iconic symbol of Australia’s biodiversity. Australians are mighty proud of their national animal, and its image adorns the country’s coats of arms, currency, naval vessels, commercial airlines, athletic uniforms, and Olympic insignia. But over the past few years, the kangaroos are proving to be more of a pest in this country. In 2010, there were 27 million kangaroos in Australia. Within the past six years, the number almost doubled. According to government figures, in 2016 there were almost 45 million kangaroos which were double the human population of Australia in that year.
In 2017, the number rose to almost 50 million. As a result, the Australian government is encouraging people to consume more kangaroo meat. The population boost of kangaroos is due to the lack of their traditional predators such as dingoes and Aboriginal hunters. The constantly rising population of the ” ‘roos” is posing considerable problems. They damage crops and compete with livestock for scarce resources. They have also caused almost 20,000-plus vehicle-animal collisions in Australia each year. (source)
8. Only 2/3 of American millennials believe the Earth is round.
In 2018, YouGov, a public opinion and data company, conducted a survey of 8,215 US adults aged 18 to 24 years. The survey was conducted to get a representative idea of the American millennials’ view on the shape of Earth. Through the survey, it was found out that only 66% of them believed that the world is round. The rest of them weren’t convinced that the Earth is round. According to this survey, 4% of American millennials firmly believe the Earth is flat.
The YouGov survey also revealed that 2% of American adults (age >45) firmly believe that the Earth is flat. It is interesting that religious belief is an important factor in this case. About 52% of people who think the world flat considers themselves very religious. The survey also found that those with an income of less than $40,000 are less likely to believe the Earth is round than those with an income of over $80,000. (source)
9. Three-quarters of the cars that Rolls Royce has ever produced are still on the road.
Founded in 1906 by Charles Stewart Rolls and Fredrick Henry Royce, Rolls-Royce, Ltd was a car and airplane engine manufacturing company. In that same year, it introduced its first car, the Silver Ghost. It ran non-stop for a record-breaking 24,000 kilometers which earned it the reputation as the best car in the world. Since then, the Rolls Royce became well known for its expensive luxury cars and awesome performance. One of the highlights of this company is that three-quarters of the Rolls-Royce cars ever produced are still in sound condition and on the road. (source)
10. If we could capture just 0.1% of the ocean’s kinetic energy caused by tides, we could satisfy the current global energy demand five times over.
As the sources of non-renewable energies are exhausting at a rapid rate, scientists are looking eagerly for renewable energies. Currently, one of the best options is harnessing tidal energy as it is practically inexhaustible. Tidal energy is not a new concept. Our ancestors knew about it and the earliest evidence shows that they used to harness it on a small scale and then ground grain using it. Today, with the advancements in technology, we can use it as a viable energy source. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), by 2050, we will successfully use ocean energy to produce 337 GW of power. Being a clean source of energy, it will reduce CO2 emissions by up to 1 billion tons.
When the tide occurs, the oceans become a great source of kinetic energy. According to UK Marine Foresight Panel, if we can capture only 0.1% of this energy, it could satisfy the energy demand of the whole world five times over. Since tides are cyclic and we can easily predict their occurrences, the power generation from a tidal power plant will be predictable. The lack of fluctuation will help to bring down the maintenance costs of power plant equipment. Currently, there is an ongoing project in Swansea Bay, the UK, where a power-generation tidal lagoon is being built. (source)