First nuclear-powered Bitcoin mine opening in 2023

Cnet.comJanuary 25, 2023

Cumulus Data, connected to Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna nuclear power station, has completed plans with bitcoin miner TeraWulf to begin hosting space for bitcoin mining. The initiative will be the first in a wave of excess energy providers to use nuclear power to mine bitcoins. 

More and more initiatives in this regard are popping up, while the debate rages on about the supposed environmentally unfriendly ‘Proof-of-Work’ mining. Flared gas can be used for oil and gas operations to reduce the carbon footprint and get earnings on otherwise useless flared gas, not just hypothetically.

Similarly, initiatives with hydropower have been underway, and now nuclear plants can service bitcoin miners to mine bitcoins with next to no carbon emissions. While miners require a substantial amount of energy to solve the cryptographic puzzles, it is simultaneously one of the few variables on which a miner can gain competitive advantages over other miners. To be competitive, miners will keep searching for better ways to use the current electricity grid, particularly if more and more will be of the intermittent kind.  

Estimates range from 40 to 60% of bitcoin mined are mined with a renewable or waste energy source because it is often the cheapest to find. While ‘out there’, the prediction of Square and ARK investments that bitcoin is the solution to abundant energy is taking baby steps in real life.

The arrangement by Cumulus Data is only one of several. An energy startup called Oklo has agreed to a 20-year partnership with the bitcoin mining company Compass Mining in order to construct a small nuclear reactor. The mayor of Miami, who supports cryptocurrency, has made an effort to entice Chinese bitcoin miners by touting the city's abundant nuclear power. Meanwhile, the discussion between Proof-of-Work and Proof-of-Stake will continue.