If you are frequently conducting transactions or interacting with smart contracts on the Ethereum network, you have probably already noticed. It is busy on the network, and since May the gas prices or transaction fees have begun to rise again. Gas is the unit which is used to calculate what fee a user pays to interact with a smart contract or to send a transaction over the network.
The total amount of gas used per day hit a record on the 14th of June. That Sunday, 61 billion gas in transaction fees was spent on the network.
Reason for network congestion is the rise in popularity of stablecoins and Decentralized Finance
(DeFi). For example, the largest stablecoin by market capitalization, Tether (USDT) is responsible for over 200.000 transactions per day on the Ethereum network. The stablecoin is partially issued on the Ethereum blockchain
since 2017 but has recently started moving the majority of their tokens from Omni onto Ethereum. Around $5,7 billion in USDT is now issued on Ethereum, coming from approximately $1,5 billion at the beginning of this year. A growth of about 280%.
Even though Tether users are the most significant gas payers with $2,5 million in monthly fees, it is not solely responsible for the growth. Decentralized exchanges and lending solutions are gaining popularity, and the majority of these services are operating on the Ethereum