Bitcoin miners revived a dying coal plant – then CO2 emissions soared.
Cryptocurrencies are regularly criticised for their energy waste and climate impact. In this case, bitcoin is directly burning coal. A Bitcoin mining company bought a powerstation to fuel their mining.
In a deal struck in late 2020, Marathon, a bitcoin “mining” company, became the sole recipient of the power station’s electricity. It established an elongated data center on 20 acres of land beside the facility that is packed with more than 30,000 Antminer S19 units, a specialized computer that mines for bitcoin. Such thirst for power is common in crypto – globally bitcoin mining consumes more electricity than Norway, a country of 5.3 million people.