China’s share of Bitcoin mining’s global electricity usage fell below half for the first time in April this year, but Kazakhstan jumped to third place as its mining share increased six-fold.
According to data from the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance, China’s global hash rate, the computing power needed to mine new Bitcoins, will be from more than 75% of the world total between September 2019 and April 2021. It dropped to 46%. Next month, Beijing tightened crackdown For energy-intensive industries, we are trying to reduce it for nearly 10 years.
The data also show the first clear seasonal movement of Chinese crypto miners from the western Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region to the southern region, which relies primarily on coal power plants to take advantage of cheap hydropower during the rainy season. Provides a good perspective.
The expulsion of miners from China makes it difficult to track electricity usage, as many new mining operations involve private transactions with off-the-grid power plants.
“Let’s [that growth] Michel Rauchs, CCAF’s Digital Asset Leader, said: ” [mining] You can go anywhere. There is no way to track it unless you communicate with the source. “
Cryptocurrency proponents claim that more eco-friendly coins are possible, Elon Musk, Tesla CEO, In May, it overturned support for Bitcoin over power consumption, knocked out billions of dollars from the crypto market, and angered millions of investors.
Perianne Bowling, founder and president of the Digital Commerce Chamber of Commerce, a blockchain and cryptocurrency advocate, said:
But in places like Kazakhstan, the growing crypto mining industry relies primarily on fossil fuels. It generated nearly 90% of the country’s electricity last year, according to the US Department of Commerce.
“We are looking at that extra demand [for electricity] It can be met by extending the life of the old power plant or by completely reviving a power plant that was abandoned because it was no longer profitable, “Raufs said.
In the United States, the second largest mining country with 16.8% of the world’s hash rate, some mining relies on fossil fuels. In northern New York, private equity firm Greenwich Generation Holdings has promised to convert coal-fired power plants to natural gas in 2017 to mine bitcoins and use carbon credits to offset their activities. did.
Cambridge data also shows how long Chinese miners go looking for cheap electricity, trucking server farms to take advantage of cheap hydropower in the Sichuan region during the rainy season. During that period, the state’s share of Bitcoin mining’s electricity consumption rose from 15% to over 60% of China’s hash rate. At the same time, the hash rate of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region’s predominantly coal-powered mining industry fell from 55% to less than 10%.
The scrutiny of the power environmental advocates used to generate cryptocurrencies is not new. The CCAF Bitcoin Power Consumption Index suggests that global Bitcoin mining consumes 8 gigawatt hours per day, or 70 terawatt hours per year if levels are consistent, and Austria’s annual consumption. Is slightly higher than.
However, these numbers can change dramatically depending on the price of Bitcoin. Estimates of annual consumption reached 130.03 terawatt hours as Bitcoin prices peaked in early April.
Consumption reached a record high of 141.28 terawatt-hours in early May as prices rose again before musk plunged as it tweeted concerns about the environmental impact of digital assets.
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