What’s yours is mined

Nearly half the electrical power in Iceland is going to create cryptocurrency:

Iceland is facing an “exponential” rise in Bitcoin mining that is gobbling up power resources, a spokesman for Icelandic energy firm HS Orka has said.

This year, electricity use at Bitcoin mining data centres is likely to exceed that of all Iceland’s homes, according to Johann Snorri Sigurbergsson.

He said many potential customers were keen to get in on the act.

“If all these projects are realised, we won’t have enough energy for it,” he told the BBC.

Johann’s figures are startling:

[H]e expects Bitcoin mining operations will use around 840 gigawatt hours of electricity to supply data centre computers and cooling systems, for example.

He estimated that the country’s homes, in contrast, use around 700 gigawatt hours every year.

Iceland has a population of about 350,000, not quite as many as Bakersfield, California.

(Via Fark.)


  1. fillyjonk »

    14 February 2018 · 11:16 am

    And yet, no one seems to be complaining much about the “carbon footprint” of cryptocurrency, yet they will shame asthmatics for using air conditioning in the summer.

  2. McGehee »

    14 February 2018 · 11:35 am

    Iceland relies on geothermal, am I right? If Bitcoin mining is being carried out there preferentially, it could indicate a degree of environmental consciousness one doesn’t normally see among First World eco-activists, let alone Dark Web types.

    But if the demand leads Iceland to branch out to fossil fuels, that would be problematic. Here’s hoping they’re willing to build carbon-free nuclear plants before that happens.

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