Looking for solid data on Cardano's Energy Consumption

Hi everyone,

I am trying to find some solid data on Cardano’s energy consumption that could withstand scrutiny (because it’s for a project where eco-friendliness is critical) and I am slightly consfused.

Does Cardano use 6 GWh / year?
Here it states:

Cardano says it uses 6 gigawatt-hours of energy annually, about the same amount used to power 600 U.S. homes per year.

Or does Cardano use 600 kWh (0.6 GWh) per year?

Then on this report Cardano seems to use 10x less: $ADA: ‘Cardano Uses the Least Amount of Electricity per Node’, Says CCRI Research

I know it heavily depends on how busy the network is, but it’s quite a big gap.

Which one is closer to the truth? Are there any data available? Can CCRI be considered reliable?

It would be very useful if Cardano had something similar to Tezos’ “An Energy-Efficient Blockchain” https://tezos.com/carbon/

Thank you in advance!

PS - If there are any data points for cost/energy per MB, that would be also appreciated!

You may want to check out this video : Cardano vs Bitcoin - An Energy Consumption Comparison - YouTube

1 Like

Thank you Zyroxa!

I wish Cardano would offer some such numbers (Cost / Transaction, Total number of Wh per annum etc.) that are up to date, because these are from Nov 2020… (The comparison vs BTC does not help in itself in our case I am afraid…)

Thanks again

Hello @nosuic

Those two articles are not talking about the same thing. The first is referring to whole network and second is referring to a single node.

Also, 600kWh = 0.0006 GWh since 1 GWH = 1,000,000 kWh
Giga is 1 billion Watts while Kilo is 1000 Watts.

To have data that can stand scrutiny you probably have to use by node data since that is what is mostly used when measuring Bitcoin. Everyone just calculates how much do miners use to mine Bitcoin and no one adds any other data for running the network. That is for a good reason. No one knows what devices are being used by individuals that use any crypto.

So, if you use node data you have that number already from article above. It’s 0.0006 GWh times about 3000 stake pools that equals 1.8 GWh to mint blocks and secure the ledger. That would be a fair comparison to same type of metrics they use when they say that Bitcoin miners use 91 Terawatts (which is 91,000 GWh). Which is about 56,000 times more then Cardano stake pools.

The number of 6 GWH per year may be an extrapolation of how much the whole network may consume when you include all the wallet nodes and average hardware used to make a transaction. However, if you are looking for straight comparison to how they calculate for all other cryptos then you just add up the network nodes that are actively used to make the network function.

There is an article by Cardano foundation on this forum confirming 6 GWh calculation while still acknowledging that Bitcoin calculations are just total of miners usage, while 6 GWh is total for whole Cardano (at the time). Direct quote: " In Bitcoin’s and other proof of work protocols, 99% of the energy consumption is used to just select a block producer. Cardano uses a proof of stake protocol, much more energy efficient. In comparison, Cardano uses only six gigawatt-hours of energy annually compared to 115.85 terawatt-hours used by Bitcoin."

Here is a link to official Cardano Foundation post:

Hope this helps :smiley:


How could you possibly know? It seems you can run a stake pool using a raspberry pi with an ssd which doesn’t consume much at all, or you could use a retired workstation which has regular disks and, possibly, a power hungry GPU. The raspberry pi stake pool will be as sucessful as any other as long as you keep it on and have a reliable internet connection.

In Carbo Ratings link used above they outline how they came up with that number. They used recommended hardware requirements, then they ran test according to average transaction sizes. That gave them enough data to establish a base (or at least an average) power consumption per node. In reality they do not know exactly, since there could be more low powered nodes or higher powered nodes. However, this gives an average base for comparison of intended use. If you want to get into details about their method for calculating here is their paper with measuring methodology laid out:


Either way, PoS uses a lot less then PoW just on the basis that PoW has to have nodes (miners) run all the time at max capacity (as they battel for blocks), while PoS systems chooses one node to be a leader and produce a block. Just on a basis of that energy difference is going to enormous.

Well, that’s a good starter, However, iI suspect people will use whatever hardware they posess with raspberry pi owners being an exception since they probably want to prove a point. Anyway, it’s a method that can be used to show likely differences between different blockchains. It will be interesting to see what this method will give for Ethereum once they use PoS.

Thank you all for your responses. I think the key to convince hardcore-sceptics (those who are waiting for our every misstep to hate on DLTs, or NFTs) is to compare to current cases. Solana’s landing page for environment says 1 transaction consumes the same energy as 1 google search. Things like that. Comparing to BTC or ETH is not sufficient I mean. Regardless, I believe Cardano’s numbers will be hard to beat (regarding green-ness) after Hydra.

By the way are there any ideas on the cost for registering 1 MB of data on the Cardano blockchain? Thanks!