Bitcoin Mining in Iceland Will Soon Use More Energy Than Homes

Bitcoin Mining Tax

Bitcoin Mining Tax

Having a small population of just 340,000, Iceland is powered nearly entirely by renewable energy, mostly geothermal, hydroelectric, and wind that the country is rich in.

"Four months ago, I could not have predicted this trend - but then bitcoin skyrocketed and we got a lot more emails", he said to the Associated Press at the Svartsengi geothermal energy plant, which is now powering a lot of the bitcoin mining operations going on at the southwestern peninsula of the country.

Johann Snorri Sigurbergsson is a spokesperson for Icelandic energy company HS Orka and he estimates that electricity use at bitcoin mining data centres is likely to exceed that of every single home in the country. That's why miners here can find quite affordable conditions for their activity as well as super fast fiber-optic networks that are used for internet connections.

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He added that he expects Bitcoin mining operations will use around 840 gigawatt hours of electricity to supply data centre computers and cooling systems, for example.

That could cause problems, though, as officials warn they won't have sufficient energy to supply the number of proposed Bitcoin mining centers (if those facilities do indeed open).

The article reports that interest has increased largely on virtual currency mining in Iceland.

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"Under normal circumstances, companies that are creating value in Iceland pay a certain amount of tax to the government", McCarthy explained.

Inorder to make bitcoins, one needs enormous amounts of energy to run their PCs and mine the bitcoins. Now there are three bitcoin farms operating near the global airport of Iceland in Keflavik.

The growth of Bitcoin since its inception has led to the need for more bitcoin mining and the demand for more data centers to do the mining. As the mining companies have been developing in the North Atlantic island, Smari McCarthy, a lawmaker from Iceland's Pirate Party, has come up with an idea to tax the profits of bitcoin mines. "These companies are not doing that, and we might want to ask ourselves whether they should".

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In the United States, when mining companies began moving en masse to Washington to take advantage of the state's cheaper electricity, the data infrastructure of one small county became quickly overloaded and now requires an addition of 100 megawatts.

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