Daily gas spent on EVM inscriptions surges to record high of $8M

Network transaction fees across all blockchains have spiked over the weekend as the Ordinals inscriptions craze continues to push demand for blockspace — and not just on the Bitcoin network.

Inscriptions on Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) chains skyrocketed over the weekend, causing a spike in gas fees.

On Dec. 16, gas spent on inscriptions surged to a record high of $8.3 million, according to data from Dune Analytics.

The Avalanche network saw the most gas spent, with more than $5.6 million on that day alone. Aribitrum One was second, with $2.1 million spent on gas for inscriptions.

EVM inscriptions gas expenses. Source: Dune Analytics

Over the past 24 hours, 58% of network gas fees on Avalanche and 48% of zkSync Era’s gas fees were spent on EVM inscriptions.

BNB Chain has seen 73% of its transactions over the past 24 hours dedicated to inscriptions.

The situation was so severe on the Arbitrum One network that it caused a 78-minute outage on Dec. 15.

Like Ordinals on the Bitcoin network, EVM inscriptions are essentially information embedded in transaction call data to generate unique nonfungible tokens (NFTs) on-chain.

Meanwhile, the Bitcoin network has also seen a surge in inscriptions over the weekend, increasing block space demand and transaction fees. There are currently almost 280,000 unconfirmed transactions, according to mempool.space.

This has caused Bitcoin transaction fees to spike as high as $37, according to observers, making using the network for its intended purpose — peer-to-peer digital money — unfeasible for many people.

Bitcoin pioneer and cryptographer Adam Back said that Ordinals cannot be stopped, and the high fees “drive adoption of layer-2 and force innovation.”

Related: Bitcoin Ordinals team launches nonprofit to grow protocol development

On Dec. 18, NFT and Ordinals expert “Leonidas” noted that a single collection just did more volume in the past 24 hours than CryptoPunks, BAYC, MAYC, Pudgy Penguins, Azuki, DeGods, Moonbirds, Doodles and Meebits combined.

The Bitcoin Frogs Ordinals collection also topped the list for market capitalization with $182 million, he reported.

According to CryptoSlam, secondary sales of the collection spiked to $4.8 million on Dec. 17.

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