Iceland mining companies will consume more energy than households in 2018

Iceland mining companies will consume more energy than households in 2018

According to the Associated Press the energy consumption of the mining companies in Iceland this year will exceed the power consumption of all households in the country.

The cold climate and access to renewable energy – these are the main reasons for the sharp growth in the number of mining companies in Iceland.

Icelandic businessman Johan Snorri Sigurbergsson from the power company Hitaveita Sudurnesja predicts a doubling of the consumption elektroenergii miners. According to forecasts it will be about 100 megawatts this year, and it’s more than consume all 340 000 inhabitants of Iceland.

Sigurbergsson said that just four months ago “couldn’t predict this trend”, “but then bitcoin skyrocketed.” He recently met with representatives of the mining company who wants to purchase 18 megawatts.

Mining bitcoin requires a large amount of energy to perform calculations. The current Protocol called “proof of work” requires you to constantly make these calculations without them, new blocks in the Bitcoin blockchain simply does not appear. However, there are alternative protocols, for example, “proof of the bet” – in this case for verification of the transaction do not need to do calculations, but you need to have a certain amount of cryptocurrencies.

Keflavik, a coastal town on the southern Peninsula of Iceland, is one of the largest mining centers of the country. There are three major mining enterprises. In these mining farms walls are composed of elements that allow cold air inside and naturally cool the mining hardware.

Keflavik mining centre of Iceland.

In the US, when mining companies began to move EN masse to Washington to get access to cheaper electricity, energy infrastructure in this state has undergone major changes and now requires the addition of 100 megawatts.

Mining farm in Keflavík owned by Bitmain

Smara McCarthy from the Pirate party of Iceland, a political party that opposes the establishment and entered the Parliament of Iceland after the financial crisis of 2008, considers it necessary to impose a special tax on mining companies, but it is very skeptical to mining and cryptocurrencies:

We spend tens or maybe hundreds of megawatts to the production of something that has no physical form and has no real use cases outside the sphere of financial speculation. It’s not good.”

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