Going for Bitcoin
Pretty much every country is out to get a piece of Bitcoin action. Armenia is now looking to develop its own cryptocurrency sector with a 50MW plant set to come on stream in April. Plus the government is supporting a new technology cluster to support the development of blockchain-based projects.
The brand new facility can be built out to 200MW, according to local reports, with energy supplied by the Hrazdan thermal power plant in Kotayk province, northeast of the capital Yerevan.
What’s this about?
Cheap power is the key resource as cryptocurrency mining is a high-energy consumption operation. Given current Bitcoin pricing, only miners with access to very cheap electricity of around 6 cents per KWh or lower can hope to remain profitable.
Energy giant Enel is currently looking to sell renewable energy to Swiss cryptocurrency outfit Envion, according to reports. Leonardo Zannella, Enel’s head of global front trading office, says miners “who can move their facilities to places where electricity is cheap might have advantages”.
Envion, whose USP is ‘off-grid blockchain mining’, says it is building a fleet of advanced ‘Mobile Mining Units’ designed to operate at the most cost-efficient electricity sources on the planet. The company claims that accessing unused overcapacity of renewables allows it to attain “the world’s lowest electricity-price mix”.