The value of Bitcoin fell as much as 15 per cent before there was a recovery, but it is still down about 9 per cent to $64,550 this afternoon.
It’s not the first time Musk has been able to manipulate the price of cryptocurrencies. He recently backed the Dogecoin, a currency started as a joke, but it rose dramatically on his support.
Musk said overnight that Tesla would not accept Bitcoin.
“We are concerned about the rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel,” Musk tweeted.
“Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future, but this cannot come at great cost to the environment.
“Tesla will not be selling any Bitcoin and we intend to use it for transactions to more sustainable energy.
“We are also looking at other cryptocurrencies that use less than 1 per cent of Bitcoin’s energy transaction.”
Tesla announced earlier this year that it had bought $US1.5 billion of Bitcoin, which once again lead to a spike of about 20 per cent in its value.
Creating Bitcoin needs enormous amounts of computing power and energy. There have been reports that the total amount of energy used to create the currency was about the same of entire energy output of the Netherlands.
Meanwhile, an Australian computer scientist who alleges he created bitcoin has launched a London High Court lawsuit against 16 software developers in an effort to secure bitcoin worth about $US5.7 billion ($A7.4 billion) he says he owns.
In a case that was promptly labelled “bogus” by one defendant, Craig Wright is demanding that developers allow him to retrieve about 111,000 bitcoin held at two digital addresses that he does not have private keys for.
In his second London lawsuit in three weeks, Wright alleges he lost the encrypted keys when his home computer network was hacked in February 2020. Police are investigating.
Wright, who is bringing the case through his Seychelles-based Tulip Trading firm, concedes he is a controversial figure since alleging in 2016 that he wrote the bitcoin white paper – which first outlined the technology behind the digital assets – under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008.
The claim is hotly disputed.
The Australian, who is autistic and lives in Britain with his wife and two of his three children, alleges in his latest lawsuit that developers have breached their duties to act in the best interests of the rightful owner of globally-traded assets.
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