Elon Musk, Tesla’s founder and CEO, again threw his weight behind the meme-inspired cryptocurrency dogecoin. In a tweet on Jan. 14, Musk announced that Tesla is accepting dogecoin—”people’s crypto“—as payment for some merchandise on its website.
Customers are not allowed to purchase Tesla electric vehicles with the currency, but they can buy some collectible items: a “cyberwhistle,” a “Giga Texas” belt buckle, and a “cyberquad” four-wheeler for kids.
The support page on Tesla’s website says that customers must have their own dogecoin wallets set up to pay with the cryptocurrency, and any payment through any other digital currencies may result in loss or destruction of the asset.
The price of dogecoin jumped as much as 18% to $0.20. Currently, dogecoin has a market cap of $25.6 billion, and is the 11th largest cryptocurrency coin in the world, according to CoinMarketCap data. Following a recent downturn in all digital tokens, the price of the meme-coin had slipped to its lowest point since April 2021. Musk’s December 2021 tweet about a dogecoin test run also gave it a boost.
Last year, the electric car maker briefly accepted bitcoin payments for its products, including its cars. But, that soon came to a halt in May 2021 after Musk voiced concerns about the environmental damage that bitcoin mining does.
The dogecoin, on the other hand, is known to consume less energy than bitcoin. According to data from TRG Datacenters, dogecoin uses 0.12 kWh of energy per transaction, in comparison to bitcoin and ethereum, which consume 707 kWh and 62.56 kWh per transaction respectively.