According to a Nov. 25 report by the Solana Foundation, a transaction on the Solana network uses less energy than two Google searches and 24 times less energy than charging your phone.
According to the report, a single transaction on its network consumes 0.00051 kWh, or 1,836 Joules of energy. A typical Google search consumes 0.0003 kWh or 1,080 Joules of energy.
Surprisingly, according to the report, the entire Solana network consumes an estimated 3,186,000 kWh per year, which is equivalent to the average electricity consumption of 986 American households.
In May, the Solana Foundation hired Robert Murphy to write the report in order to “frame the environmental impact” of Solana network transactions. Murphy founded Othersphere and previously worked as an Energy Specialist at the World Bank.
With 1,196 validator nodes processing an estimated 20 million transactions per year, the Solana network is less decentralized than Bitcoin or Ethereum. According to the report, the Foundation will further reduce the network’s energy consumption by implementing a program by the end of this year to become carbon-neutral and offset the ecosystem’s environmental footprint. There was no additional information provided on whether the network intends to purchase carbon offsets or reduce its emissions.
Because Solana (SOL) uses a Proof of Stake consensus mechanism, the network consumes far less energy than those that use the Proof of Work mining method, such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). According to Statista, a single BTC transaction consumes an average of 4,222,800,000 joules.
It should be noted that networks do not use any specific amount of energy for each transaction. The network’s energy consumption can be the same whether it processes one transaction or one million. However, it is frequently used as a rough, if contentious, comparison.
Based on the average number of transactions and the amount of energy required to run the network, one Ethereum transaction consumes approximately 644,004,000 joules. According to Statista, one ETH transaction consumes the same amount of energy as “thousands of VISA card transactions.”
Following the switch to Proof of Take, Eth2 is expected to use approximately 99 percent less energy than the current mainnet.
Ripple (XRP) is another low-energy option, using 28,440 Joules per transaction. According to Ripple, the amount of energy used for every million transactions on its network could have powered a light bulb for 79,000 hours.
The energy used by BTC could power a light bulb for 4.51 billion hours for the same number of transactions. As a result, Ripple asserts that XRP is 57,000 times more efficient than BTC.