Green coins: how exactly do you do eco-mining?

Given the growing popularity of Bitcoin and NFT tokens (which are also based on proof-of-work blockchains), mining is celebrating its second birth. And, once again, many are voicing concerns about its effect on the environment. So the question we’ll be looking into today is, how can we reduce the negative impact of mining?

The first, probably the least dependent on us, way is for the blockchains to use other consensus methods whenever possible. As Ethereum, which is currently ranking second by market cap ($242,153,314,466), is preparing to switch to proof-of-stake, analysts expect it to take quite a lot of toll off the environment.

The second is to employ rigs powered by clean energy: for example, solar, wind, hydropower, biomass, or geothermal. And while it sounds a bit too much to move apartments or countries just to mine more efficiently, there’s always an option to rent a rig from a company that has easy access to renewable energy sources. Certain countries, like Albania, Norway, and Paraguay, obtain all or nearly all energy from hydroelectricity, and Iceland is currently at 72% hydro and 28% geothermal. Any of these would be a good location choice.

The third also has to do with the location. In countries with a cold climate, mining companies or individual miners can use the low air temperature to cool down the miners instead of using a complicated cooling system. Simple and elegant.

And, finally, the fourth is utilizing heat produced by the mining equipment. Some time ago, I read a story on Stackexchange, where the author claimed that one might be able to keep a small apartment warm using just one miner. In another case, a crypto cloud mining provider used it to warm the water for the local community’s heating system. And while it might take some serious tweaking, putting the excess heat to good use might be a great idea.

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