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Hedera Hashgraph beats DLT competitors on energy consumption

Finextra | Sep 8, 2021

hedera sustainability - Hedera Hashgraph beats DLT competitors on energy consumption

A research report by University College London (UCL) has examined the varying environmental impacts of six different distributed ledger technologies (DLT), finding that Hedera Hashgraph boasts the lowest overall energy consumption of the group.

Algorand, Cardano, Ethereum 2.0, Hedera Hashgraph, Polkadot, and Tezos were compared, with researchers from UCL’s Centre for Blockchain Technologies (ULC CBT) considering how second-generation consensus models such as Proof-of-Stake perform when compared with their predecessors (such as Proof-of-Work).

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Dr. Paolo Tasca, executive director at UCL CBT explained: “At this point, the benefits of Proof-of-Stake are well-recognised and understood in the blockchain space.

However, through this research we have found that not all Proof-of-Stake networks are created equally.

By formalising a “basic mathematical consumption model for validator-based Sybil attack resistance schemes,” the energy consumption per transaction based on common input variables could be quantified. The study ultimately discovered that the energy needs of (varying) consensus protocols is dependent on the number of active validators.

As the scale of DLT networks increase, the report concludes that networks must remain focused on environmental friendliness. The quality of hardware used by node operators and the effect of different design choices within DLT architecture must be considered through the lens of the environmental impact they can incur.


“In this paper, we tested this hypothesis using a mathematical consumption model that predicts expected energy consumption per transaction, as a function of network load. Applying this model to six different PoS-based DLT systems supports the hypothesis and suggests that their energy consumption per transaction is indeed at least two to three orders of magnitude lower than that of Bitcoin.

“Furthermore, we discover significant differences among the analysed PoS-based systems themselves. Here, a permissioned system was found to consume significantly less energy per transaction than permissionless systems. This difference could be attributed to gatekeeping capabilities offered by permissioned systems.”

Continue to the full article --> here

Download the 14 page discussion paper 'Energy Footprint of Blockchain Consensus Mechanisms
Beyond Proof-of-Work' -->  here

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