Elon Musk can’t seem to be making his mind up on Bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency. In May, months after saying that electric vehicle company Tesla announced it would accept Bitcoin as a payment for its cars, Musk backtracked, saying that he decided Bitcoin mining wasn’t ‘clean’ and he didn’t want his decision to come at an environmental cost. A month later, in June, Musk has gone back on that comment, with a slight tweak. Musk tweeted on Sunday that the electric carmaker will resume allowing bitcoin transactions when miners who verify transactions use more renewable energy.
“When there’s confirmation of reasonable clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing Bitcoin transactions,” he said in a tweet. He added that “Tesla only sold ~10% of holdings to confirm BTC could be liquidated easily without moving market.”
Bitcoin rose 5.1% to $37,360.63 at 1810 GMT (2:10 p.m. ET) on Sunday, adding $1,817.87 to its previous close, after Musk’s tweet.
Tesla in February disclosed that it had purchased $1.5 billion in Bitcoin and planned to accept it as payment. That announcement added legitimacy to the cryptocurrency as an increasingly acceptable form of payment and investment, especially coming from a large member of the S&P 500 with a high-profile CEO who commands a big following among retail investors and the general public. Tesla’s website earlier also had a support page dedicated to Bitcoin, noted that Bitcoin was the only cryptocurrency that Tesla accepts in the continental U.S.
In end may, Musk had revealed that he spoke to North American miners apparently, had the solution to the very problem he had mentioned in his reason for Tesla to drop accepting Bitcoin as a payment method, saying that, “They committed to publish current & planned renewable usage & to ask miners WW to do so. Potentially promising.”
Crypto enthusiasts, however, have stopped enjoying Musk’s tweets since he announced that Tesla will no longer be accepting Bitcoin as a payment method. This is not the first time Musk has done this, or even the second, or third time. Every time Musk mentions the cryptocurrency, a surge (often following an eventual downfall) occurs in the prices of the cryptocurrency. Internet sleuths have more than just co-related the phenomenon, they’ve even christened it: “The Musk Effect.” Over the weeks, the response to Musk’s tweets has become increasingly negative – with people blaming him solely for the rise or dip in prices, saying it cost them a loss and he’s ‘manipulating’ markets. Some took this a step further – by making a cryptocurrency solely dedicated to stopping Musk: $StopElon.