Nearly a week after the halving, Bitcoin Runes have achieved a milestone as observers and participants alike deliberate over the impacts of the new standard. 

According to a Dune Analytics dashboard, the Runes protocol on Bitcoin (BTC) has raked in $135 million in transaction fees on the cryptocurrency’s largest blockchain. On-chain data showed that tokens issued under the standard generated more than 2,100 BTC costs within a week. 

Runes fee data | Source: Dune Analytics, Cryptokoryo

Casey Rodarmor, the same mind behind the Ordinals protocol, developed Bitcoin Runes to improve the BRC-20 standard, which is touted to bootstrap defi on BTC’s network. 

Runes allows users to execute more efficient transactions and mint better-optimized tokens on BTC by tapping BTC’s UTXO format. The concept launched during the halving and has become a source of on-chain BTC activity ever since. 

Per Bitcoin Wallet Unisat, users have minted nearly 11,000 Runes, a flurry of blockchain participation that skyrocketed BTC gas fees shortly after the halving. However, fees have retraced in the days after Bitcoin’s quadrennial code switch, which cut block mining rewards by 50%.

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Analysts: Bitcoin Runes may benefit network long-term

Shipped at a block height of 840,000, Bitcoin Runes initially caused a surge in BTC transaction costs, but analysts do not expect this effect to remain in the long run. Bitcoin researcher Jade ARdinals shared with that the additional load on BTC’s network was only caused by the token creation aspect, otherwise known as minting. 

The researcher explained that speculation around Runes triggered mass minting, adding an “artificial” burden on BTC block space. Analysts believe this pressure will subside but maintain that the Runes standard will attract more developers to Bitcoin. 

“Speaking broadly, the adoption of Runes has a generally positive long-term impact on the network, and the hype around their minting through airdrops will fade as the most sought-after tokens launched during the halving are minted out.”

Jade ARdinals on Runes

Runes have already captured a chunk of BTC’s on-chain activity. Crypto Koryo’s Dune dashboard reported that Runes tokens accounted for 45% of all Bitcoin transactions on April 25. 

Read more: CryptoQuant says miners maintain pre-halving pace despite upgrade