The norm seeks to recycle electronic waste. This measure would allow reducing costs up to 75 % and increasing profits in an environmentally sustainable way
A new law in Missoula County, in the US state of Montana, focuses on the possible effects of cryptocurrency mining in global warming and in avoiding the so-called electronic waste. According to local media reports published on April 5th, the county adopted new regulations for cryptocurrency mining.
The Board of County Commissioners of Missoula approved the standards with the intent to “protect public health, safety, morals and general well-being” of the county’s residents. From now on, miners in that region will be able to establish their operations only in districts of light or heavy industries and only when the conditional use of other types of energies has been reviewed and approved.
Another new measure is that miners must certify that all their electronic waste will be recycled after completing their operations, whilst the type of energy they must use should be renewable. A recycling company licensed by the Department of Environmental Quality will handle the electronic waste the miners generate.
Finally, in the document it is specified that mining operations that do not comply with these new regulations may continue, but will not obtain authorization to get expand unless they comply with the new requirements, which entered into force on April 4th of the current year until April 3rd, 2020.
The article also notes that the staff at Hyperblock, a county mining company, uses as much electricity as a third of all homes in the county, and also it plans to triple its electricity consumption.
County Commissioner, Dave Strohmaier, commented: “Cryptocurrencies are exponentially using more energy and we have to take measures to address it […] We have to use new renewable energies if we want to deal with climate change”.
As it is explained in the county news, Hyperblock purchases hydroelectric power to conduct its operations without problems, but the new objective would be to join, along with other potential buyers, to the use of renewable energies.
Less Expenses, More Profits
The manager of Hyperblock, Dan Stivers, assures that the company has always used renewable energy and that it could even have used the electricity obtained by coal combustion, since it is more economical. Stivers also states that Hyperblock uses an authorized recycler to treat its electronic waste.
“However, that is not enough in any way. It is a viable business model and if we had not moved as anchor tenants, there would be no Bonner mill as we see it today”, he said.
Sustainable mining has been an area of interest for the cryptocurrency community since some months ago, especially considering the changes in the market, as well as the increase in difficulty in generating blocks, and high energy costs. The idea is to find strategies to solve each of these problems; therefore, not to harm the environment or the profits of the miners.
Recently, a miner said that the use of solar energy had reduced the cost of mining operations by up to 75 %. Now, this initiative not only promises to be much more profitable, but also to have a less invasive environmental impact.
By María Victoria Rodríguez