With Bitcoin hitting a record high value of $63,100 (at the time of writing), the ongoing climate crisis created by the mining of cryptocurrency, which is inherently baked into using said online currency as verifying purchases on a blockchain requires mining for more coins to verify it, is only accelerating. As the BBC reported earlier this year, the University of Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance estimated that Bitcoin consumes more electricity annually than the entire country of Argentina, most of it generated from fossil fuels, and demand is only growing. (It’s also the reason you can’t buy a graphics card right now.)
In February, a video of a Bitcoin mining rig packed into a shipping container at a Texan oil well, powered by excess natural gas, went viral as thousands of people called out the Bitcoin mining company Giga Energy over what they saw as wanton environmental destruction. Now things are going one step further, as a power plant in Western New York sprung back into action last year solely to provide power for Bitcoin mining.
Bitcoin: Initiated pic.twitter.com/baB58FKw6T
— Matt Lohstroh (@lohstroh) February 8, 2021
The Greenidge power plant in Dresden, a village in the state’s Finger Lakes Region, formerly sat offline for seven years according to New York Focus. An erstwhile coal-fired plant that closed when its owner went bankrupt after New York State began to shift away from