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Record $2.4M in Fees Spent on Bitcoin's 2024 Halving Block

Bitcoin's 2024 halving block becomes the most expensive in history with $2.4M in fees, driven by high demand for transactions and the launch of the new Runes Protocol.

Historic Bitcoin Halving Sees Unprecedented Transaction Fees

In an extraordinary display of competition and investment, Bitcoin users spent a record 37.7 Bitcoin, equivalent to over $2.4 million, to secure space on the highly anticipated 2024 halving block. This event, which occurred at 12:09 am UTC on April 20, marked a pivotal moment in Bitcoin's history as miner ViaBTC produced the 840,000th block, reducing the mining reward from 6.25 BTC to 3.125 BTC per block.

Users spent $2.4 million in fees to inscribe runes and rare satoshis on the first halving block. Source:

The Most Expensive Block Ever Mined

Block 840,000 has quickly become the most expensive block ever mined in the history of Bitcoin, with users collectively spending 37.67 BTC in transaction fees, as reported by Including the miner subsidy, a total of 40.7 BTC — worth about $2.6 million — was awarded to ViaBTC for mining this landmark block.

Runes Protocol Drives Fee Spike

A significant portion of the frenzy surrounding this halving block can be attributed to activities related to the newly launched Runes Protocol by Bitcoin Ordinals creator Casey Rodarmor. The protocol, which debuted simultaneously with the halving, introduces a more efficient method for creating tokens on the Bitcoin network compared to the BRC-20 standard. Unlike BRC-20s, Runes utilizes the Unspent Transaction Output (UTXO) model to "etch" new tokens directly on Bitcoin, contrasting with the "inscription" account model used by Ordinals.

Impact of Runes and Ordinals

The launch of Runes has sparked a wave of activity as enthusiasts rush to inscribe and etch rare satoshis on this monumental block, with Ordinals developer Leonidas noting that the fees from the subsequent blocks had surpassed the Coinbase rewards. "Runes degens have single-handedly offset the drop in miner rewards from the halving," Leonidas commented, highlighting the significant impact of this new protocol on miner economics post-halving.

Continued Interest and Investment in Bitcoin

The halving block also drew attention from Bitcoin mining pools competing to mine what is known as an "epic" satoshi—the very first satoshi of the new reward era. The excitement even prompted Trevor Owens, managing partner at The Bitcoin Frontier Fund, to offer a bounty of up to $1 million for the first block of the new era, underlining the high stakes and significant interest within the community.

Source: Leonidas

Community Reactions and Criticism

The halving event, while a cause for brief celebration among many in the cryptocurrency community, was also met with skepticism. Notably, Bitcoin critic Peter Schiff took the opportunity to critique Bitcoin holders, suggesting that the "halving" could metaphorically reflect a future decline in their net worth. Amid these mixed reactions, the Bitcoin community remains resilient and forward-looking, focusing on the innovations and potential that each new development brings to the ecosystem.