Can coal power cryptocurrencies?
IOT Group wants to re-commission a shuttered coal-fired station to power bitcoin mining operations. The Australian company has joined forces with powerco Hunter Energy to get the Redbank power station near Sydney up and running within 12 months so that it can offer cheap energy to cryptocurrency mining operations.
And if this comes off, this is crypto cheap, for sure.
"The average consumer pays around 28 cents per kilowatt-hour, with what IOT are doing its pre-grid is eight cents and will be five cents at night time," IOT says.
Hunter Energy is a known entity, but what about IOT? The company says it’s in the business of designing and developing ‘products that embrace existing and future global trends’.
While cryptocurrencies clearly are part of the present and future, coal-fired power stations really belong to the past. And this in Australia, where greenhouse gas emissions in 2017 were the highest on record.
Not that Aussie officials mind. The Climate Council has charged the government with ‘climate censorship’ for sitting on emissions data.
In Canada, however, sentiment is turning against providing cheap energy to crypto mining operations. Power provider Hydro-Québec has said it is considering raising its rates for mining operators.
Québec Premier Philippe Couillard says, “There needs to be added value for our society – just having servers to do transaction mining and acquire new bitcoins, I don’t see the added value.”