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Elon Musk. Photo: Liesa Johannssen-Koppitz/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Consumers can no longer buy Tesla vehicles with bitcoin, CEO Elon Musk announced on Twitter Wednesday.

What he's saying: Musk cited the environmental concerns associated with bitcoin — the cryptocurrency has a massive carbon footprint — as his reasoning behind Wednesday's decision.

"Tesla has suspended vehicle purchases using bitcoin," Musk said.

  • "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."
  • "Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future."
  • "[W]e intend to use it as soon as mining transitions to more sustainable energy," he said, adding that Tesla is considering other cryptocurrencies that consume less energy.

Flashback: Musk in March approved the use of the cryptocurrency for Tesla purchases in the U.S. Some critics at the time said the move could tarnish the company's environmentally friendly image.

Our thought bubble, from Axios' Ina Fried: The energy issues related to Bitcoin have been long known and less energy consuming options have been available for some time.

Go deeper

EIA report: Carbon emissions expected to increase in 2021

Reproduced from EIA; Chart: Axios Visuals

Coal consumption for electricity generation is expected to increase by 17% this year due to higher natural gas prices that are temporarily making coal more cost-competitive, according to the latest Short Term Energy Outlook released by the Energy Information Administration Tuesday.

Why it matters: Coal is the most carbon-intensive fuel, so any uptick in its use, even temporarily, can have a significant influence on carbon emissions.

House passes $768 billion defense spending bill

Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The House approved a $768 billion National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for the 2022 fiscal year in a bipartisan 316-113 vote on Thursday.

Why it matters: The annual bill, which authorizes Pentagon spending levels and guides policy for the department, would require women to register for the military draft, among other provisions.

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Republicans’ secret lobbying

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The five Senate Republicans who helped negotiate and draft the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill have been privately courting their Republican colleagues to pass the measure in the House.

Why it matters: House GOP leaders are actively urging their members to oppose the bill. The senators are working to undercut that effort as Monday shapes up as a do-or-die moment for the bipartisan bill.