The cost of sending a transaction on Ethereum plummeted today as congestion appears to be finally clearing.
According to EthGasStation, the average gas fee on Wednesday is between 30 and 40 Gwei, with a notable 6 Gwei as the minimum to get a transaction confirmed in less than 30 minutes.
This comes after a period of more than two months of elevated fees, touching at times more than 140 Gwei. Taking a standard Ether (ETH) transaction as an example, the average cost of sending it came down from about $1 to less than $0.25. The improvement is even more noticeable for DeFi users, where some interactions would regularly consume up to $15 in fees.
Activity going down
This appears to be part of a trend that began several days ago with the gradual decrease in transaction count, according to Etherscan data.
Total gas usage and the number of token transfers have also decreased slightly, though seemingly less than the total transaction count. This could suggest that a decrease in DeFi transactions accounts for the majority of the relief, as transactions related to Tether and Forsage, an alleged Ponzi scheme, are topping the charts.
It is worth noting that Etherscan data does not yet include Wednesday, making it difficult to pinpoint what is driving the sudden lowering of the gas fees.
The Ethereum community raised the gas limit, the Ethereum equivalent of block size, up by 25% in June. This was not enough to immediately ease the congestion as demand was too high.
As Cointelegraph previously reported, Ethereum has a fairly elastic gas demand. When prices are high, lower value transactions in industries like blockchain gaming tend to decrease.
The congestion resulted in new users being unable to “dip their toes” in Ethereum DApps and DeFi, as some commentators noted.