KEY POINTS

  • The price of bitcoin rose Wednesday after Elon Musk duscussed about the cryptocurrency in an online panel
  • Tesla may start accepting Bitcoin again once it increases the amount of renewable energy it uses for mining
  • Bitcoin miners may migrate to the US following China's crackdown

American electric vehicle company Tesla may again start accepting bitcoin as payment. The announcement helped the cryptocurrency’s price rebound to $32,000.

Bitcoin's price surged Wednesday afternoon after Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company may resume accepting the cryptocurrency for payments, but only if it uses more renewable energy to mine the currency. 

“I want to do a little more due diligence to confirm that the percentage of renewable energy usage is most likely at or above 50% and that there is a trend toward increasing that number. If so, Tesla will most likely resume accepting bitcoin,” Musk said at "The B Word conference."

During the online event, Musk also noted that he personally owns bitcoin, dogecoin and ethereum. Tesla and SpaceX exclusively own bitcoin.

“I definitely do not believe in getting the price high and selling or anything like that. I would like to see bitcoin succeed,” he added.

His remarks led the price of bitcoin to increase by over 7%, trading as high as $32,820 during the panel, Bloomberg noted. Ethereum's price also rose by 1.5% on Wednesday afternoon, CNBC noted citing Coin Metrics data.

In May, Bitcoin prices plunged after Musk announced that Tesla would stop accepting the cryptocurrency as payment due to climate change concerns. 

"We are concerned about rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel," Musk wrote on Twitter.

"Cryptocurrency is a good idea... but this cannot come at great cost to the environment."

The prices of cryptocurrencies have been on a downward trajectory after the Chinese government imposed a crackdown on crypto miners, forcing them to flee to other countries. 

On June 21, the People’s Bank of China urged major banking and payment companies to take a tougher stance against cryptocurrency trading. China’s central bank also barred banking institutions from providing products and services for cryptocurrency transactions, according to a statement.  

New data now shows that many cryptocurrency miners may migrate to the United States, which is currently the world’s second-biggest destination for bitcoin miners. 

This file photo shows a physical imitation of the bitcoin cryptocurrency This file photo shows a physical imitation of the bitcoin cryptocurrency Photo: AFP / Martin BUREAU