Crypto could inherit the harmful plants of 20th century.
In the latest case of re-purposing old industrial spaces for digital currencies, another bitcoin mining company purchased a power plant to mine crypto, consistent with an initial report from Tech Spot.
And one day, nearly all fuel power plants might be replaced by Bitcoin mining operations.
Crypto mining is expending coal waste
Stronghold Digital Mining based in Kennerdell, Pennsylvania, purchased Scrubgrass power station of Venango County of same state.
The bitcoin mining company describes itself as an “environmentally beneficial & vertically integrated Bitcoin miner,” and it’ll use the state’s waste coal to generate power for mining software positioned adjacent to the plant in shipping containers.
Waste coal is what is left after primary coal mining operations and may be especially damaging to the surrounding environment, when it seeps metals like iron, aluminum or manganese into the soil & nearby water resources.
The bitcoin mining company aims to burn waste coal, then return then non-contaminated land back to the state, which will be received by Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).
The department’s statistics say, Stronghold already has enabled the state to reclaim more than 1,000 acres of Pennsylvania land. This is significant, because the ability to burn waste before it threatens serious contamination still leaves a substantial amount of CO2 (carbon dioxide) from waste coal.
And these all type of emission are becoming of mounting concern as watchdog groups examine pollution footprint of cryptocurrency transactions & bitcoin mining.
Crypto operations are buying up 20th century industrial spaces
Bitcoin mining uses special hardware, called application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) and are single-purpose devices which will only ramp-up hash power to work against Bitcoin’s SHA-256 algorithm.
And it is happening across the country. In mid-July of this year, high crypto prices fueled the substantial growth in crypto mining operations, leading owners of former industrial spaces to add their properties to the real estate market, where many buyers are increasingly interested in converting-them into Bitcoin mining facilities.
“We have produced enough machines now” to match the surging demand for crypto-mining facilities, said Mike Colyer, CEO of Foundry, a financing & crypto mining consultation firm, in an initial Curbed report.
More & more defunct factories are becoming empty investments for real-estate developers, who had bought many of them when manufacturing saw a sharp decline through-out the nation.
“We are getting phone calls from people even in New Hampshire & Vermont, from someone who might own a paper mill that went-out of business, who will say, ‘I have got a paper mill & nobody else wants to come-up here, so I put in a bitcoin-mining facility?'” added Coyler.
Cheap land, industrial infrastructure & factories that have gone defunct are high in demand, since these manufacturing spaces almost perfectly meet the requirements of crypto mining.
“You need to get a lot of air into the building & a lot of air out of the building, so typically you’d open up the side walls & vent it through the roof,” explained Coyler in report.
But believe it or not, this started many ago. In 2014, Greenidge Generation, a power-producing company, purchased Lockwood Hills coal-fired power plant on the Seneca Lake, New York and transformed it into a natural gas plant.
But, by July of this year, Greenidge already was using the same plant to mine Bitcoin.
Today, newly-converted facility contains a turbine on one side to power hundreds of computers supporting crypto transactions. Perhaps we don’t need to worry about energy companies continuing to pollute the world with fossil fuels. Soon, all our energy companies might be owned and dedicated to bitcoin mining. Which is not necessarily a solution to CO2 emissions. But it is a step.