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Buterin Says Ethereum Merge Should Happen in August

The much-anticipated Ethereum merge might happen in August Or September Or October. Ethereum co-founder said the merge may happen in August. 

The merge is a move from a proof-of-work to proof-of-stake validation model and will cut Ethereum's energy consumption by 99%. The merge is one part of a bigger upgrade for the important smart contract cryptocurrency.

The long-awaited Ethereum (ETH) merge might finally be upon us. Vitalik Buterin, the man behind the world's second-biggest blockchain, said the network's move to proof-of-stake should happen in August. Though he quickly added that it might take a few more months.

Speaking at an ETH web developer summit in Shanghai, Buterin said, "If there are no problems, then the merge will happen in August." He then said it might also take place in September or October. Buterin's hopes were echoed by several Ethereum developers.

The much-delayed merge was slated for June, but developers delayed the important step. Given that there's around $25 billion at stake and this is a complicated technical move, it's more important to get it right than rush the upgrade. Developers are busy with various tests and testnets, but it is still like attempting to repair a car engine while speeding down the highway.

What to expect from the Ethereum merge
The Ethereum merge is a move from the original proof-of-work validation model to a more environmentally friendly and scalable model called proof-of-stake. Bitcoin (BTC) uses proof-of-work, as does Dogecoin (DOGE). Right now the three cryptos each consume as much energy as a small- to mid-sized country. The merge will cut Ethereum's energy consumption by about 99%.

The merge is an important step in a series of staged upgrades designed to solve some of the network's issues. It was the first blockchain to introduce the all-important smart contract capabilities, and still hosts a large number of decentralized applications. However, Ethereum struggles with high gas fees and heavy network congestion. As a result, its first mover advantage has been eroded as projects move to faster and lower cost Ethereum alternatives.

Unfortunately, the merge is not a magic bullet for all of Ethereum's problems. It won't, for example, reduce gas fees. That won't happen until at least next year when the network introduces something called "shard chains." It is this final step that will reduce both network congestion and gas fees.