Bitcoin mining power crunch: Kazakhstan looks toward nuclear solution

The exodus of Bitcoin miners from China into Kazakhstan has contributed to an power crunch that the central Asian nation’s president has proposed fixing with nuclear power.

Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Energy has attributed the 8% increase in domestic electricity consumption all through 2021 to Bitcoin miners. The nation acquired not less than 87,849 Bitcoin mining machines from Chinese corporations up to now this yr following China’s crackdown on crypto mining, in response to knowledge from the Financial Times.

The substantial improve in demand has led to a deficit within the home power provide and contributed to unreliable electrical energy providers, according to the Kazakhstan Electricity Grid Operating Company. President Tokayev instructed bankers at a Nov. 19 meeting that he thinks constructing a nuclear power plant will assist ease the stress on his nation’s electrical infrastructure:

“Looking into the future, we will have to make an unpopular decision about the construction of a nuclear power plant.”

While Tokayev didn’t join the proposal to Bitcoin mining power use, failing to maintain miners within the nation may jeopardize the estimated $1.58 billion in tax revenue these miners signify. Power shortages have already pressured Bitcoin mining market Xive to depart Kazakhstan. Didar Bekbau, co-founder of Xive, stated in a Nov. 25 tweet that he needed to shut down his firm’s mining farm on account of “restricted electricity supply from the grid.”

Kazakhstan is now dwelling to 50 registered crypto mining corporations and an unknown variety of unregistered ones.

Related: ‘We are the number two crypto miner in the world, and we see practically no financial return,’ says Kazakhstan President Tokayev

The determination to construct new nuclear power crops is a severe one in a rustic that suffered extreme nuclear fallout from weapons testing throughout Soviet occupation. Kazakhstan’s final nuclear power plant closed in 1999.

About 88% of Kazakhstan’s power at present comes from fossil fuel-burning power crops.

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