The world’s largest bitcoin producer banned bitcoin 

in September 1st, 2021

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China has pulled the plug on bitcoin mining within the country, which previously accounted for half of the world’s mining output. As a refresher, bitcoin mining (how new bitcoin is created) is an energy intensive process using high-powered computers. Cheap electricity in regions such as Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia attracted miners and mining pools (groups of miners combining their computing power).

But a booming bitcoin mining industry worked against China’s aggressive goals to cut down on carbon emissions — one energy research fund even found that eliminating bitcoin mining in China would cut their CO2 emissions by 57 million tonnes. That’s how much the entirety of Portugal emits in a year.

And what’s good for China seems great for the next potential mining capitals.

  • In the more rural U.S., interest is turning some states into a hotbed. Texas in particular is bending over backwards to lure in China’s migrating miners with one company rapidly repurposing old warehouses and hangars into mining sites.
  • Crypto-friendly areas of Europe are receiving so many calls that they can't build facilities fast enough. One data center is even getting offers of a 50% share of future profits if they'll make space for mining machines.
  • And Kazakhstan surged to third place in global crypto production as many of China’s miners migrated over for Kazakhstan’s cheap electricity (easily half the price of competitor countries). One company has spent millions moving 320 machines from China to Kazakhstan.

China may have alternative motives, too. The country has been working on their own cyber currency that, unlike bitcoin, is not as energy intensive. This digital yuan furthers China’s already advanced market for cashless payments, makes illegal transactions easier to catch, and is deployed on the blockchain. It works similarly to their regular currency with regulation by the country’s central bank. A bank official even spoke in April and said the digital yuan seeks to offset the global usage of the dollar, concerning those in favor of the current USD-dominated global market.

🎬 Take Action

Find hope in the experts who believe bitcoin mining could help the world transition to renewable energy sources faster. Here’s how.

Resource Center:

  • Financial Times: (Where we found this story) 1 week old | 8 mins long
  • Fortune: Bitcoin’s CO2 emissions in China 1 month old | 4 mins long
  • Jamestown Foundation: Kazakhstan surges to third place in global crypto production 2 weeks old | 7 mins long
  • Slate: Texas luring bitcoin mining companies  2 months old | 18 mins long
  • Asia Financial: The digital yuan’s energy usage 2 months old | 12 mins long
  • CNBC: China’s digital currency  5 months old | 9 mins long

ASCII-ing About The News

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The B is for blowing through energy.

Art Credit: ASCII Art Farts
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