beginingCryptocurrenciesBitcoinThe Last Bitcoin Has Been Mined - What Will Happen?

    The Last Bitcoin Has Been Mined - What Will Happen?

    Bitcoin reaches maximum! How far can BTC go? And how soon will we see another BTC rally? All these questions are on the minds of BTC investors. But in this article we want to cover another issue. What will happen when the last bitcoin is mined? As we all know BTC has a maximum supply of 21 million and I will try to outline the possibilities that could arise when the last one is mined.

    When will it happen and what will happen then?

    As we all know, BTC is given as a reward to miners for processing transactions on the Bitcoin Blockchain. New BTC are issued every time a new block of Bitcoin is mined, and the Bitcoin code ensures that this happens roughly every ten minutes, adjusting the mining difficulty depending on how many miners there are. Additionally, the Bitcoin halving reduces the block reward by 50%. Such a halving happens every 210k blocks. These halvings are significant because the sudden decrease in the supply of new BTC leads to an eventual spike in the price of BTC, assuming the demand for BTC stays the same or even increases after the halving takes place.

    Anyway, these halvings can't keep happening forever because as I mentioned in the introduction, the maximum amount of BTC is 21 million and this limit is built into the Bitcoin code. Which brings us to the question: When will the last BTC be mined? If you google the answer, then Google will tell you that this will happen in the year 2140. For this calculation, each BTC halving is assumed to occur every four years. If you look more closely at the dates, you will realize that these halvings are not exactly four years apart, but only three years and nine months. So if you take 3.75 years as the time interval for the halves, then you get the year 2078 for the last BTC to be mined.

    When there are no more BTC to mine, there will be no more economic incentives for miners and the Bitcoin network will die. Due to the fact that the entire cryptocurrency market depends on Bitcoin, every cryptocurrency will go to zero. Just kidding! I got you there, you can admit it! Let's get this out of the way: First, Bitcoin's dominance has been declining in recent years, which suggests that BTC will not be the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization in 2078. This means that the rest of the crypto market will no longer depend on it. Also, in addition to what BTC miners receive from each new Bitcoin block, they also earn fees as compensation for processing transactions. Miners can be found to be earning anything between 0.5 and 1 BTC per block just from transaction fees. Many people think that until the supply of BTC runs out, these transaction fees will be enough to sustain the network. There is only one problem with this hypothesis. Given that Bitcoin can only process seven transactions per second, it is highly unlikely that this will become the payment network that is used for microtransactions.

    Possible solutions

    One solution could be a layer 2 solution like Lightning Network, which I described in another article of mine ( article ). The main problem for the scenario described above would be that these layer 2 solutions would reduce the number of transactions and therefore reduce transaction fees for the miner. That being said, it's pretty clear that the idea of Bitcoin now is as a store of value, not a payment solution. This means that the BTC network must survive without the transaction fees. This may be included in subsequent solutions.

    Maintaining a proof of work network like Bitcoin's requires a lot of computing power and a lot of electricity. They make up the majority of the operating costs of crypto miners around the world. This is why most of the mining farms go to countries and regions with cheap energy. Although we just mentioned that the Bitcoin blockchain cannot survive on transaction fees alone, it is assumed that the cost to mine will be the same when we run out of BTC to mine. However, it is very likely that energy will become cheaper and technology will become more efficient in the coming decades. You just have to look at El Savador which is now using volcanoes to mine BTC.

    Economic incentives aren't the only thing that can sustain the BTC network. With the continued adoption of cryptocurrency, major banks and even the public sector such as governments will have all the incentive in the world to make sure the Bitcoin network remains secure and operational. If public institutions hold BTC after the last one is mined and they find out that miners are about to shut down their mining rigs because they aren't making profits, they won't hesitate to put some money into those mining rigs to keep the whole thing going . Another way could be for them to start their own mining operation to support the Bitcoin network.

    The next option would be to migrate BTC to a smart contract blockchain like Ethereum. This would be possible with Wrapped BTC Tokens, which are available as ERC-20 tokens on the Ethereum blockchain. This locks the coin into its native blockchain to mint an equivalent number of ERC-20 tokens on Ethereum.

    One final solution could be to increase the maximum amount of BTC. Technologically, this would be possible to do as long as there is a consensus of the economic majority. This includes all economic actors who hold or mine BTC, as well as developers and users.


    As we have seen in this article, BTC has more than one way to survive the day these BTC mining rewards expire. I highly doubt it will happen in my lifetime, but if it does, I have no fear that it will. I think the current adoption shows that crypto is here to stay and won't go down without a fight, not because of a technical problem. What do you think, which solution would be best, or do you have another solution to this problem?

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