ELI5: If a person destroy/ lose a bitcoin, can that bitcoin never be recovered?

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Say one of those urban legends is true. A person has 5k btc on a harddrive and spills coke all over it, ruining the harddrive. Is there now 5k less bitcoin in the world which can never be recovered?

So theoretically, over a very long period of time say 1000 years, the amount of bitcoin could essentially be halved? And given enough time, the number will come close to 0?

submitted by /u/_groundcontrol
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247 Bitcoin

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