Marathon Digital Initiates Bitcoin Mining Powered by Renewable Landfill Energy

Fort Lauderdale, FL: Marathon Digital Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:MARA), known for its endeavors in bolstering the Bitcoin infrastructure, has announced a collaboration with renewable energy firm Nodal Power. The partnership aims to harness methane emissions from a Utah landfill to power a 280 kW Bitcoin mining pilot project. The project, now fully operational, underscores a sustainable model for cryptocurrency mining, mitigating the environmental impact associated with the significant energy demands of such operations.

Methane, according to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), is a potent greenhouse gas, with an impact “80 times more harmful than CO2 for 20 years post emission.” With municipal solid waste contributing to around 14.3% of the total methane emissions in the U.S. in 2021, as per the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the initiative by Marathon addresses a critical environmental challenge.

Marathon’s project is a testament to the possibility of transforming harmful methane emissions from landfills into a renewable energy source for powering Bitcoin mining operations. This project forms part of a larger Marathon initiative aimed at validating the process of capturing, converting, and utilizing landfill methane emissions for electricity generation to fuel Bitcoin miners.

Fred Thiel, Marathon’s Chairman and CEO, highlighted the broader environmental and operational goals, stating, “By capturing methane emitted from landfills and converting it into electricity, we may be able to lower our energy costs, diversify our operations, and contribute positively to the environment.”

The global cryptocurrency mining sector is on a quest for sustainable energy solutions. For instance, Genesis Digital Assets Limited recently commenced operations at a hydroelectric-powered facility in Sweden, illustrating the growing trend towards eco-friendly mining practices. Additionally, Marathon itself inaugurated a 200-MW immersion-cooled plant in Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City in October.

The initiative by Marathon and Nodal Power not only aligns with the global sustainability goals but also sets a precedent for other cryptocurrency mining entities to explore environmentally friendly energy alternatives.

Despite achieving a mining milestone of 2,926 Bitcoin in Q2 2023, Marathon reported earnings that fell below expectations. The firm’s Q2 revenues soared to $132.8 million, marking a 228% surge compared to the previous year.

The pilot project by Marathon Digital Holdings exhibits a pioneering effort in marrying cryptocurrency mining with renewable energy solutions, reflecting a growing consciousness within the digital asset sector towards environmental sustainability.

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Marathon Digital CEO Urges to Incentivize Bitcoin Miners for Embracing Renewable Energy

Fred Thiel, the Chief Executive Officer of Bitcoin mining firm Marathon Digital, has called on the Federal Government to incentivize miners to embrace renewable energy options to mine their cryptocurrencies.

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Thiel’s comments come in an interview following the release of a report by the US government on the environmental implications of Bitcoin mining.

Known for running a mining outfit with a knack for proper and targeted transition into clean energy, Thiel said the incentivization model would arguably help stir the willingness of stakeholders to embrace clean energy.

Using his company as an example, Thiel noted that “unlike other miners who may be on the grid just sucking energy off the grid in competition with consumers, we do it behind the meter.” According to him, this relationship is “more symbiotic to the grid versus parasitic.”

The clamour behind the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining comes off as a major regulatory push for most governments worldwide. The subject is held as a major concern that the Chinese government has banned every mining and crypto-related activity, causing a tectonic shift in the mining and broader crypto ecosystem in mid-2021.

With a ‘responsible’ shift away from the environmental concerns of Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining, one of Ethereum’s reasons for transitioning into the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus model through the merge is that when out last week. Thiel’s recommendation, if taken, may help to nudge miners, particularly the established ones operating in the US, to invest in clean energy.

“If you provide an incentive for miners to co-locate behind the mediator at renewable energy plants, then miners are going to move there,” he said.

To Thiel, the report from the government somehow encouraged stakeholders to look at the bright side of mining crypto with renewable energy. 

He said this highlights how the regulators are beginning to warm up to the idea and importance of Bitcoin and PoW mining in general. While he acknowledges that full appreciation may take time, he believes the government is currently positively disposed to welcome sound regulation.

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EU Market Watchdog Speaks Against Renewable Energy Mining for PoW

The Vice-Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), Erik Thedéen, has taken an unpopular stance against the use of renewable energy for all Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining operations.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Thedéen said the use of renewable energy can derail member nations from focusing on the climate change goals set out by the bloc.

From Thedéen’s standpoint, cryptocurrencies are not bad in themselves, a position that was gleaned from his advocacy for a switch to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) mining. With the market watchdog calling Bitcoin mining a “National Issue,” he pointed out that member states must place a special exception to the activities, adding that;

“We need to have a discussion about shifting the industry to a more efficient technology.”

While the energy utilization of Bitcoin mining is very obvious, debating a way forward remained at the forefront of major industry stakeholders in the past few years. Last year, the ban of Bitcoin and all cryptocurrency-related activities further placed the subject as a matter of urgency, with industry players devising modalities to shift their energy options to a renewable one.

Despite industry stakeholders being unable to agree on whether Bitcoin mining is good for the environment or not, as many proponents have presented arguments in favour of mining, many have agreed that a switch to renewable energy sources is a better bet moving forward. 

American electric motor manufacturer, Tesla Inc, announced its plans to reintroduce Bitcoin payments when the bulk of energy powering Bitcoin mining comes from renewable or clean energy sources. Many Bitcoin mining companies are also exploring avenues to tap energy from clean sources, a move that many believe will be economical and environmentally friendly in the long run.

Thedéen’s call against the use of renewable energy for Bitcoin mining is concerning and might sway policymakers in a direction that places additional strain on BTC and other PoW coins in the near future.

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More Green Energy: Crypto Mining Saves A Hydro Power Plant In Costa Rica

Green energy powers most of Bitcoin mining and the world might as well face it. And the rest of the cryptocurrencies that use Proof-Of-Work might be right behind, because they follow the same incentives. In their quest for cheaper energy sources, they all reach the same conclusion. Humanity is wasting renewable energy all over the world. And wasted energy is the cheapest of them all. 

In today’s story, a hydropower plant that had to pause operations for nine months found cryptocurrency mining and got the dream client they needed. Reuters gives us the prelude to the story:

“The plant was forced to reinvent itself after 30 years because the government stopped buying electricity during the pandemic due to surplus power supply in the Central American country, where the state has a monopoly on energy distribution.”

How much green energy does a country has to have to just stop buying from a clean hydro plant? Well, according to hydropower.org

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“At the end of 2016, Costa Rica reached a total installed hydropower capacity of 2.12 GW. The country dominated the headlines for the second consecutive year, achieving 100 per cent renewable electricity production for a total of 271 days.”

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How Did Crypto Mining Enter The Hydro Plant’s Picture?

Every talking head and their grandmas spread ESG FUD through traditional media. And that spills into social media, where everybody is oh-so-sure that crypto mining is boiling the oceans. Because of that, Eduardo Kooper, the owner of the plant, doubted going the crypto mining route. However, they just had to pivot. They tried other ventures, like making frozen food, and none of them work. There was no other choice.

“I was very skeptical at first, but we saw that this business consumes a lot of energy and we have a surplus.”

The hydroelectric company, with its three plants valued at $13.5 million and a three Megawatt capacity, invested $500,000 to venture into hosting digital mining computers.”

Why would miners move their operation to a hydro plant, though? Wouldn’t it be more comfortable doing it at home? They are heavily incentivized to look for the cheapest energy possible, that’s why. And green energy is renewable. Coal is not. The Reuters report quotes one of the hydropower plant’s satisfied customers:

“Installing it in this place is much more profitable than at home,” at almost half the cost, he calculated, after connecting his computer to the network at the river-powered plant.”

Business is business.

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BTCUSD price chart for 01/12/2022 - TradingView

BTC price chart for 01/12/2022 on OkCoin | Source: BTC/USD on TradingView.com

Green Energy And Crypto Mining, A Match Made In Heaven

We at NewsBTC have been telling you this. Bitcoin mining incentivizes the creation of green energy infrastructure. And it can finance green energy plants already in place. Mining provides both a buyer of first resort and a buyer of last resort. Three months ago, we wrote:

“A whitepaper by the Bitcoin Clean Energy Initiative from earlier this year had explained how bitcoin mining, when using renewable energy, “is especially suited to accelerate the energy transition” towards a cleaner electricity grid.”

And two months ago, in an article on how Bitcoin mining is helping the Navajo Nation in more ways than one, we told you:

“As the world is trying to phase out coal-powered energy, the Navajo innovate to keep up with the times. According to Walter Hasse, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority president, “I had excess electricity that I still had to pay for and deal with. Now, I want to build renewable energy to replace my lost coal resources that are throughout the nation. I need someone to consume that renewable energy resource.”

And with Bitcoin mining, they have that buyer. And now, the other PoW cryptocurrencies can follow Bitcoin’s example. In Costa Rica, the other side of the world, a power station manager reaches the same conclusion as the  Navajo Tribal Utility Authority president. Quoting Reuters again:

“Kooper said international cryptocurrency miners are looking for clean, cheap energy and a stable internet connection, which Costa Rica has plenty of. However, he said Costa Rica’s government should be more aggressive about trying to attract more crypto mining business, although he gave no specifics.”

The Green Energy Future We Deserve

Proof-Of-Work mining is a net positive for the planet. It will lead us to the green energy future that humanity’s dreaming of. It’s the only industry that can do so. And the revolution is already well underway. 

Featured Image: Screenshot from Reuters' video report | Charts by TradingView

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Lessons From Reason’s “The Fake Environmentalist Attack on Bitcoin” Mini-Doc

Phenomenal piece by Reason Magazine. We at NewsBTC have been countering the Bitcoin is bad for the environment narrative for a while now. Now, we have a new tool. A short and sweet documentary that rests on a devastating premise. “Such environmentalist attacks on bitcoin are best understood as a strategy by economic, media, and political elites to undermine a powerful new form of money that they can’t control.” Boom! That’s exactly what’s happening.

Related Reading | Bitcoin Mining Vs. The World: BTC Leads Sustainable Energy

Let’s explore the idea further, but first, let’s let Reason Magazine define who they are and what they stand for:

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“Reason is the planet’s leading source of news, politics, and culture from a libertarian perspective. Go to reason.com for a point of view you won’t get from legacy media and old left-right opinion magazines.”

You’ve been warned. This is the perspective you’ll get from this article and from “The Fake Environmentalist Attack on Bitcoin” Mini-Doc:

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The mini-documentary starts with the filthy propaganda the state usually serves:

“Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin are terrible for the environment,” declares Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). “It’s an extremely inefficient way of conducting transactions,” pronounces former Federal Reserve Chair and current Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. “It’s a way to both hide dirty money and destroy the environment at the same time,” says Daily Show host Trevor Noah.

Reason Magazine Summarizes The Government’s Perspective

Then, Elizabeth Warren brings up the most ridiculously flamboyant stat ever uttered. According to the Senator, a single Bitcoin transaction uses the same amount of energy that an average house uses in 53 days. WHAT? Couldn’t these government people control themselves and provide a more plausible number? Do people actually believe these made-up stats? Apparently, they do, as the Discord story proves. 

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“Discord’s founder and CEO Jason Citron hinted at possible integration with the Ethereum ecosystem, with NFTs, and with the incoming Web3. And all hell broke loose.
Discord fanatics spammed Citron’s replies and canceled their subscriptions to their Nitro premium service. Discord’s own employees took to social media to express their discomfort. Video game culture influencers rallied the masses and gathered hundreds of Likes and Retweets. What were their reasons? Environmental concerns.”

Back to Reason’s documentary, Bitcoin spokesperson Nic Carter dismantles the government’s techniques. They establish an exaggerated per transaction cost, and then “extrapolate Bitcoin’s transactional load to hundreds of billions per year.” They’re not dumb, they know that “The electricity consumed by mining isn’t used to power individual transactions.” However, the average citizen doesn’t. Nic Carter closes with, “Bitcoin’s transactions and Bitcoin’s energy use are not really correlated.”

They aren’t. Bitcoin produces one block full of transactions every ten minutes on average. If we reduced the mining to only one machine, Bitcoin would still produce the same amount of blocks in the same amount of minutes. 

BTCUSD price chart for 11/19/2021 - TradingView

BTC price chart for 11/19/2021 on Capital.com | Source: BTC/USD on TradingView.com

The Media Claims Are Outlandish, To Say The Least

The mini-documentary’s host is Nick Gillespie, Reason’s Editor At Large. He admits “The energy used by Bitcoin mining has increased significantly and it will continue to grow, but the media claims are outlandish.” As an example, he offers this ridiculous 2017 Newsweek article titled “Bitcoin Mining on Track to Consume All of the World’s Energy by 2020.” As you might suspect, Newsweek’s prediction didn’t come true.

Then, it’s time for some real stats. According to the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance, Bitcoin consumes “just over a hundred terawatt-hours per year.” That’s 117.02, to be exact. That’s on the high end of the spectrum of Nick Hansen’s estimations. If the network uses 14.2 Gigawatts per hour, that would amount to 124 terawatt-hours per year. However, “most likely, the Bitcoin network is between 4.2 and 14.2 Gigawatts.” So, it would be considerably less by Hansen’s stats.

Pick the number you trust the most, it’s a worthy investment considering everything Bitcoin brings to the world.

Critics Tend To Ignore These Facts

Reason defines mining as”the process through which a global network of computers maintains the bitcoin network through computation. Though energy-intensive, this process is what makes bitcoin a truly decentralized monetary system.” And that’s a fact. Proof-Of-Work is essential to decentralization. There is no alternative. A little later, Reason’s Nick Gillespie hits us with another home run, “the work being carried out by this global computer network is what allows Bitcoin to be controlled by mathematical rules instead of human actors vulnerable to government or corporate control.”

Then, the documentary presents another crucial fact, “Miners are incentivized to use energy that would otherwise go to waste.” The Human Rights Foundation’s Alex Gladstein puts it in another way, “Bitcoin miners need energy that nobody else wants.” Why? Because it’s cheaper. The incentives are clear as day. After that, Reason brings out the ace under Bitcoin’s sleeve, “In the Western United States, mobile Bitcoin miners are already running on electricity derived from unused natural gas from oil wells that can’t be captured because there are no pipelines to carry it.” Luckily for the government, Reason doesn’t bring up everything Bitcoin mining is doing for the Navajo Nation.

Reason Closes It Off With Even More Stats 

In a questionable move, Reason quotes the Bitcoin Mining Council controversial report. That one puts Bitcoin’s sustainable energy use at around 56%. Let’s quote NewsBTC’s report on that number.

“The good news is, there’s data to show that Bitcoin’s “mining electricity mix increased to 56% sustainable in Q2 2021.” Is that data valid? That’s another question altogether. The Bitcoin Mining Council elaborates on the results:

The results of this survey show that the members of the BMC and participants in the survey are currently utilizing electricity with a 67% sustainable power mix.”

Related Reading | Power Ledger Blockchain Firm Signs Deal with Japanese Green Energy Supplier

We can say that because, here at NewsBTC, we’re partial to Bitcoin. Was it a good idea for Reason to use it? Maybe not, but notice they used the conservative 56% figure and not the aspirational 67% one. The magazine knows what it’s doing. That’s why they brought back Nic Carter to close the documentary, “Bitcoin is a vote of no confidence in the monetary and financial system that exists today.”

That’s exactly what it is. Among other things.

Featured Image: Screenshot from the documentary | Charts by TradingView

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The Navajo Nation Is Mining Bitcoin With Sustainable Energy. Here’s How

The Navajo Nation’s Bitcoin story might be the most wholesome of the last few months. The mine isn’t only providing employment within the reservation, it’s helping them transition from providing coal-powered energy to renewables. Another case study that proves Bitcoin incentivizes and funds green energy. Another story of Bitcoin helping the disenfranchised people of the world to find their footing.

Related Reading | New To Bitcoin? Learn To Trade Crypto With The NewsBTC Trading Course

How disenfranchised are the Navajo? “The Federal Government took away all the land rights away from the Navajo people,” says a disembodied voice in the Compass Mining mini-documentary. According to it, among the Nation:

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  • 48% are unemployed
  • 40% live without running water
  • 32% live off the grid
  • 33% live below the poverty line

But the Navajo are resilient people who’ve claimed the desert Southwest as home since time immemorial,” said director Will Foxley via Twitter. And now, they have Bitcoin on their side.

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The First Bitcoin Mine In Navajo Territory

The audiovisual piece comes with this text as a companion, which tells the story of how the first Bitcoin mine came to be:

“In 2017, a small Canadian firm named West Block approached the Navajo about building a mine on Navajo land. At 8 megawatts (MW) in size after the initial round, the Navajo invested in an equity stake in the mine during the bear market of 2018. Three years later, Bitcoin mining has turned a corner to become one of the most profitable sectors of Bitcoin itself.”

Apparently, 58% of the mine’s energy already comes from the depicted solar farm. “The Bitcoin mine is incentivizing renewables to be built on Navajo country to replace coal,” says the mini-documentary’s narrator. Foxley claims that “the Bitcoin mine uses Navajo energy on Navajo land for Navajo employment.” However, the text states that “The Navajo chose to divest themselves at a profit.” The move was positive because it ended up “placing the money back Navajo peoples hands with investments into the public utilities.

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The Navajo Nation’s Transition To Clean Energy 

In the past, the Navajo have had their runnings with dirty forms of energy. The text summarizes it with.

“The Navajo story of the 20th century is fraught with energy abuse, including malpractice in coal and uranium extraction for people off the reservation. Today’s generation of Navajo continue to live with these negative externalities, such as heightened levels of radiation in well water.”

However, as the world is trying to phase out coal-powered energy, the Navajo innovate to keep up with the times. According to Walter Hasse, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority president, “I had excess electricity that I still had to pay for and deal with. Now, I want to build renewable energy to replace my lost coal resources that are throughout the nation. I need someone to consume that renewable energy resource.

Who could consume that energy,? we wonder. What industry is mobile enough to move to the desert and start making money for everyone around right away? Well, the mini-documentary is all about exactly that phenomenon.

BTCUSD price chart for 11/06/2021 - TradingView

BTC price chart for 11/06/2021 on CEXIO | Source: BTC/USD on TradingView.com

Jobs For The Navajo People

Traditionally, the Navajo don’t want to leave the reservation. However, there are not many employment choices there. That was before Bitcoin. According to Foxley, the mine now hosts around 3,000 machines. According to the text, “The facility currently employs two full-time employees. With the expansion, that number will grow to eleven. That money then flows from the mine into local jobs creating even more buzz.” Not only that, the documentary’s narrator promises “more mines scheduled to come online in the coming months.

Related Reading | Bitcoin Mining Vs. The World: BTC Leads Sustainable Energy

Considering a mining company commissioned both the audiovisual piece and the text, we could assume who’s behind those “more mines scheduled.” And we salute them.

Featured Image: Screenshot from the mini-documentary | Charts by TradingView

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Bitcoin Mining Vs. The World: BTC Leads Sustainable Energy

Recent reports show that Bitcoin mining uses great amounts of renewable energy due to economic incentives. This turn of events raised their numbers of sustainable power mix to almost three times higher than the world average.

As renewable energy offers low costs, bitcoin miners, who had to spend 68.42% of their total income to purchase electricity, have upscaled their efficient use of green energy. A recent data review shows how their mix of sustainable energy is higher than any country or industry.

Bitcoin mining

Renewable energy is not flexible and their locations do not tend to be convenient for most people. As bitcoin miners move close to sources of energy to lower the costs, they are a viable solution to not waste the sustainable energy that otherwise would be deployed, as explained by CoinShares.

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According to a survey carried by the Bitcoin Mining Council (BMC), the electricity mix used by bitcoin miners increased 3% from second-quarter to an approximate of 57.7% sustainable in third-quarter 2021 “making it one of the most sustainable industries globally.”

MicroStrategy’s CEO Michael Saylor had stated earlier that the Bitcoin Mining Council’s effort to bring clarity and transparency over Bitcoin mining will most likely “play an important role in demystifying” the industry.

Furthermore, a whitepaper by the Bitcoin Clean Energy Initiative from earlier this year had explained how bitcoin mining, when using renewable energy, “is especially suited to accelerate the energy transition” towards a cleaner electricity grid:

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With bitcoin mining integrated into a solar system, (…) energy providers – whether utilities or independent entities – would have the ability to play the arbitrage between electricity prices and bitcoin prices, as well as potentially sell the “surplus” solar and supply almost all grid power demands without lowering profitability.

China’s Ban Impact On Bitcoin Mining

Digiconomist data shows that China’s ban of all Bitcoin mining activities dropped the total amount of “active computational power in the network” by 50%. The reduction of mining competition also generated higher levels of income for active miners worldwide.

Torbjørn Bull Jenssen CEO of Arcane commented earlier:

As China is turning away from bitcoin mining, the mining industry as a whole is becoming increasingly green and a driver for renewable energy around the world. Now is excellent timing for Arcane to enter into this segment, (…) Mining is a very interesting business stand alone, and it also has considerable synergies towards our other investments and business. I am looking forward to finalizing the strategy for Arcane Green Data and presenting it in more detail for our partners and investors.

Related Reading | Is China Considering Lifting The Bitcoin Mining Ban? The NDRC Runs Public Survey

In a wider panorama of energy usage by Bitcoin miners, Square funds a solar-powered facility for bitcoin mining, El Salvador explores the viability of using volcanic renewable power for mining bitcoin, and other countries propose economic incentives for bitcoin miners who use renewable energy.

Related Reading |Jack Dorsey: Square Could Build Bitcoin Mining System

CoinShare stated in June’s report that bitcoin’s network is “more renewables-driven than almost every other large-scale industry in the world.”

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Crypto Mining and Renewable Energy: Current Scenario and Emerging Trends

The economic potential for cryptocurrency can be huge. Millions of people who don’t have access to banking can have digital wallets, be prevented from fraud, and cut out the third-party transaction fees. These are just a few of the transformative potential of cryptos. There are many more.

Despite all these potential benefits, there is a looming question from critics about the environmental impact of mining. How much of the power generated for cryptocurrency mining is produced by fossil fuels and how much of the power is already coming from renewable sources? Conservative numbers show that renewable energy share in the current crypto mining operations is close to 30%, but some studies show that the number can be even close to 70%.

Whatever the current number might be, most will agree that there is still ground to be covered in this space. MineBest, founded in 2017 by Eyal Avramovich, specializing in cryptographic computing activities that provide professional hosting services for mining Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies has shared some insights on the current state of renewable energy in the crypto ecosystem and how these numbers can be increased. Those insights are expounded below. 

Utilizing excess renewable energy 

Renewable energy generation often engenders leftovers that end up being wasted rather than consumed. On a sunny or a windy day, when solar panels or wind turbines generate power that exceeds users’ demand, if the grids are overloaded, clean energy is amply wasted. The only option to store that excess energy is in expensive and currently economically unsustainable Li-ion batteries. The problem is so dire that it is estimated that around 12% of the wind power generated in China was wasted as excess, similar proportions apply to different geographies. 

Research shows that energy wastage is especially higher in the areas where new renewable power grids are being installed, owing to the erratic power supply chain. It is imperative to look beyond the existing financial and grid structures to solve the problem of these excesses. 

Crypto mining can be the answer to this problem. Adopting new strategies, such as mining cryptocurrencies with excesses of renewable energy that have been generated, has enormous potential to address financial and technical gaps. It can convert waste to value and reduce financial risks. The returns of cryptocurrency mined in this way could stimulate a wider range of additional investments in renewable assets.

Mining cryptos from various renewable energy sources

In essence, energy generation is the biggest section of innovation that lies in the strata of renewable energy. Once the energy is generated, it can be used for crypto mining, just like it can be used in industries or domestically. However, media reports clearly show that the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) is lesser for renewables. LCOE tells us the cost to produce a kWh of energy with a given power source, which can be used as the electricity price for the mining profitability calculations.

Hydroelectric power

Hydroelectric power has already established itself to be one of the top sources of energy for cryptocurrency miners. Hydroelectric power comes with the added advantage of being agile and responsive, apart from the clean and cheap part that comes with most renewable energy. 

Hydroelectric power has been widely used over the past few years in mining operations in China, often utilizing smaller hydroelectric plants that don’t find financial sustainability from other sources. These ‘small-scale’ hydroelectric plants require new customers after the crypto mining sector was largely sent packing by the Chinese government in Spring of 2021.

Apart from China, Canada, and the US are home to numerous Hydroelectric power mining operations. 

Solar power

Mining operations with the tools and resources to be able to set up solar-powered rigs in the desert are finding that it is a good investment. Once you have paid for the solar panel system itself, the cost of mining is virtually free. 

Solar power comes with its disadvantages of being highly dependent on the time of the day or the year. This, in many ways, is a recipe to produce excess energy when the sun is at its peak. The surplus of energy can be used in mining cryptos, as previously mentioned.

Solar energy can be used by end users too, and doesn’t require an industrial sized setup. This setup is often used in many small sized mining operations. Although some countries like China and Vietnam lead in crypto mining operations powered by solar power, due to the small set up required, many small scale crypto mining is done that is hard to account for. 

Geothermal Power

Geothermal power has recently become popular within the crypto enthusiasts, thanks to El-Salvador and its president, who said that he plans to use his country’s natural volcanoes for Bitcoin mining. El-Salvador is just one of the countries with abundant geothermal power. Geothermal power has the added benefit of being somewhat predictable and available all year long. 

Wind Power

Wind Power generation is often like Solar power. Expensive setup, but once installed, it can be used for a long time. Like Solar, Wind power is heavily dependent on the weather, which makes unpredictable power output. This erratic supply of power can be used in crypto mining. However unlike Solar power, wind power generation with a domestic setup is not currently possible. Lucrative wind power harvesting destinations include Northern African countries like Morocco and a few plateaus of China.

There are a few other renewable energy sources like Tidal and Biomass energy which are being experimented on for crypto mining, but at a very small scale. It will take years before they start operating at a large scale.

However, just finding renewable energy sources is not enough. The energy sources have to be coupled with state-of-the art mining infrastructure to remain ahead of the other miners and achieve mining profitability. This infrastructure along with world-class mining technicians are provided by MineBest. MineBest is exploring opportunities and making advancements to make the crypto mining process greener and cheaper by the day.

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Green energy crypto mining ETF launches on New York Stock Exchange

An exchange-traded fund focusing on more environmentally friendly crypto mining operations and infrastructure has been launched in the United States.

The new Viridi Cleaner Energy Crypto-Mining and Semiconductor ETF started trading on Tuesday, July 20, on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ‘RIGZ’.

The product is part of growing efforts to attract mainstream investors with a focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

Viridi Funds, which launched the new investment product, stated that the fund also invests in crypto mining infrastructure businesses and semiconductor companies such as Samsung Electronics, Nvidia Corp., and Advanced Micro Devices, according to Law360.

Viridi CEO Wes Fulford, a former CEO of Bitfarms, said the fund will focus on clean energy screening. He said that the migration of mining out of China to North America was good news, as more than half of crypto mining operations in the region now use renewable energy sources:

“Obviously, with what’s happened in China the power used is dramatically lower than it was at the beginning of June. And it’s also providing the added benefit that more computing power is finding its way to other jurisdictions, sort of decentralizing the network even further, which adds to the security.”

Fulford added that Bitcoin and Ethereum address the ‘S’ and the ‘G’ from the ESG principles pretty well, and the new EFT will be adding the ‘E’. He stated that things are still in the early innings of this emerging asset class and a “tidal wave of institutional flows” has yet to come.

Related: Green Bitcoin: The impact and importance of energy use for PoW

According to a July 20 CNBC report, new data shows that Bitcoin mining isn’t nearly as bad for the environment as it used to be, thanks to older less efficient machines being switched off in China and operations moving to more environmentally friendly locations. North America has jumped from fifth to second place and now accounts for nearly 17% of all global Bitcoin mining.

On July 18, Cointelegraph reported that large U.S.-based crypto mining operations will benefit greatly from increased market share and hash rate dominance. It named Riot Blockchain, Marathon, Hut 8, and Hive Blockchain as potentially the biggest beneficiaries of China’s great mining migration.

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