Elon Musk working with dogecoin developers after Tesla suspends bitcoin payments

Elon Musk is working with dogecoin developers to improve its efficiency after his electric car company Tesla suspended payments in bitcoin on environmental grounds.

Musk has been a strong proponent of dogecoin and his latest endorsement has helped boost its price which has risen by nearly a quarter in the past 24 hours to $0.54 by 7.25am GMT on 14 May.

In contrast, Musk’s announcement on 12 May that Tesla was suspending bitcoin payments has dented that crypto’s price, with bitcoin languishing at just over $49,000, well below its all-time high of $64,829, according to Coindesk.

“To be clear, I strongly believe in crypto, but it can’t drive a massive increase in fossil fuel use, especially coal,” Musk tweeted on 13 May, explaining Tesla’s suspension of bitcoin payments.

He also tweeted a graph showing bitcoin’s energy usage over recent months which he described as “insane”, and said it was “high time there was a carbon tax!”

“Working with Doge devs to improve system transaction efficiency. Potentially promising,” he also tweeted.

Dogecoin’s total market capitalisation has fallen 6.4% over the last seven days, despite a more than 25% bounce in the past 24 hours, to reach $70.5bn, making it the fourth-most valuable cryptocurrency.

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The meme coin was founded in 2013 to poke fun at other alternative coins vying to challenge bitcoin’s dominance but is now being viewed as a legitimate investment by Redditors and crypto fiends alike. 

Its name is a reference to a meme about a talking Shiba Inu dog with poor grammar, with catchphrases such as “very concern”, “much wow”, and “such doge”.

READ Elon Musk’s U-turn on accepting bitcoin for Tesla payments kicks down crypto’s price

This week it was reported that Goldman Sachs managing director Aziz McMahon had left the bank after making millions from betting on dogecoin and may start his own fund.

Bitcoin’s total market capitalisation has fallen nearly 12.5% over the last seven days to $917.1bn, according to website Coinmarketcap.com. 

To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email James Booth