All of this is to say that, overall, we consider Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies, to be a net negative from an ESG standpoint. As it currently stands, the positive potential of Bitcoin remains unproven, but the negatives are very real and present.
Yet that is not necessarily the end of the story, as we consider that the blockchain technology that underpins cryptocurrencies has a lot more promise at providing solutions to long-standing ESG problems. By offering a new method to record information in a manner that is more open while also being secure, it could address issues with supply chain traceability, renewable energy distribution, anti-money laundering and proxy voting. It might not grab the headlines in the way that its cryptocurrency cousins have done so before it, but in the background (or rather back-office) and behind the scenes, it could provide exciting opportunities in helping companies tackle the sustainability issues that their businesses face.