Crypto miners turn to solar power in Texas
The US tech companies Block and Blockstream are planning to build a solar-powered Bitcoin creation center in June.
In a new effort to make cryptocurrencies less expensive and more ecologically friendly, two US tech companies, Block and Blockstream, are preparing to open a 100% solar-powered Bitcoin creation facility, or mine, in June.
Block, formerly known as Square, and blockchain expert Blockstream have each committed $6 million to the trial project, which will initially produce roughly 0.1 bitcoin each day, according to Blockstream CEO Adam Back.
Blockstream stated that the facility would be located in west Texas and would be outfitted with Tesla solar panels and batteries.
"A lot of people have talked about the theory, and we thought we would try it in practice, so that we have actual data that people can look at and quote and cite," Back said.
More than simply creating bitcoins, he stated, "the idea is to demonstrate that mining can help finance infrastructure" for sustainable energy.
According to Back, the bitcoin creation facility may only utilize extra capacity from renewable energy sources, with the majority of the electricity flowing to conventional residential and business users.
Mining bitcoin necessitates a sequence of sophisticated computer calculations that consume an increasing amount of electricity.
Back stated that if the test is conclusive, the two project partners are already considering expanding the project by up to 100 times on the same site.
It is not the first cryptocurrency initiative that is powered by renewable energy.
Mining takes place at a geothermal power facility in El Salvador, where bitcoin is an official currency and uses energy from adjacent volcanoes.
Criticized for its high electricity usage, the cryptocurrency industry has seen the development of various projects in recent years to attain a more environmentally friendly model.
Last year, dozens of companies banded together under the banner of the Crypto Climate Accord to commit to carbon neutrality by 2030.