On Wednesday (September 14), Michael Saylor, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of business intelligence software company MicroStrategy Inc. (NASDAQ: MSTR), decided to address some of the “misinformation & propaganda” surrounding the impact of Bitcoin mining on the environment.

It is worth remembering that on 11 August 2020, MicroStrategy announced via a press release that it had “purchased 21,454 bitcoins at an aggregate purchase price of $250 million” to use as a “primary treasury reserve asset.”

Saylor said at the time:

Our decision to invest in Bitcoin at this time was driven in part by a confluence of macro factors affecting the economic and business landscape that we believe is creating long-term risks for our corporate treasury program ― risks that should be addressed proactively.

Since then MicroStrategy has continued to accumulate Bitcoin and its former CEO has become one of Bitcoin’s most vocal advocates. MicroStrategy’s latest $BTC purchase, which Saylor tweeted about on 29 June 2022, means that the firm is now HODLing around 129,699 bitcoins, which were “acquired for ~$3.98 billion at an average price of ~$30,664 per bitcoin.”

On 2 August 2022, MicroStrategy released its “Q2 2022 Financial Results“. The company’s press release about its latest quarterly earnings report announced that “as of August 8, 2022, Michael Saylor will assume the new role of Executive Chairman and Phong Le, the Company’s President, will also serve as the Company’s new Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the Board of Directors.” It also mentioned that “Mr. Saylor will remain the Chairman of the Board of Directors and an executive officer of the Company.”

The press release went on to say that “as Executive Chairman, Mr. Saylor will focus primarily on innovation and long-term corporate strategy, while continuing to provide oversight of the Company’s bitcoin acquisition strategy as head of the Board’s Investments Committee.”

Yesterday, in a note addressed to “Journalists, Investors, Regulators, & Anyone Else Interested in Bitcoin & the Environment,” Saylor shared “a few high level thoughts on Bitcoin Mining & the Environment.”

Saylor pointed out to critics of Bitcoin’s high energy consumption that:

Bitcoin runs on stranded, excess energy, generated at the edge of the grid, in places where there is no other demand, at times when no one else needs the electricity… Bitcoin mining is the most efficient, cleanest industrial use of electricity, and is improving its energy efficiency at the fastest rate across any major industry… Approximately $4-5 billion in electricity is used to power & secure a network that is worth $420 billion as of today, and settles $12 billion per day ($4 trillion per year)…

The only proven technique for creating a digital commodity is Proof of Work (bitcoin mining) deployed in a fair, equitable fashion (i.e. no pre-mine, no ICO, no controlling foundation, no primary software development team, no series of forced hard fork upgrades that materially change the monetary protocol)… 99.92% of carbon emissions in the world are due to industrial uses of energy other than bitcoin mining… There is an increasing awareness that Bitcoin is quite beneficial to the environment because it can be deployed to monetize stranded natural gas or methane gas energy sources… Bitcoin maximalists believe that Bitcoin is an instrument of economic empowerment for 8 billion people around the world.

On September 4, CoinDesk reported that Saylor had spoken (via a video call) on Saturday (September 3) to an audience at the Baltic Honeybadger conference in Riga, Latvia, and that he had this to say about what his firm is doing with the Lightning Network:

MicroStrategy has got some R&D projects going on right now where we’re working on enterprise applications of Lightning: enterprise Lightning wallet, enterprise Lightning servers, enterprise authentication.

He also explained why he believes that Lightning has a great future:

The advantage of Lightning is not just that you could scale up bitcoin for billions of people, or drive the transaction cost to nearly nothing, but also, the ethos of bitcoin is to go very carefully and not move fast on the base layer without the universal consensus, but in Lightning, you can move much more aggressively developing functionality and take more risks with the applications than you can with the underlying bitcoin layer.