Volcano-Powered Bitcoin Mining Farms in El Salvador
Following his recent announcement concerning the country's upcoming volcano-powered Bitcoin mining farms, El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele has shared photos of the project which is currently underway.
When Did This Begin?
The President tweeted on Tuesday in English: “Clean, volcano powered hashrate coming soon... “
Then accompanied his post with futuristic-looking images. Except that, according to the President, the future is actually here.
Approximately two weeks ago, El Salvador became the first country in the world to adopt cryptocurrency as its legal tender. This occurred after the approval of a bill presented to El Salvador's Congress by Bukele.
This approval [by a supermajority], made Bitcoin the only other legal tender in the country, next to the US dollar. Hours after the decision was made the President announced his intentions to use power obtained from volcanoes for Bitcoin mining.
Despite being the smallest country in Central America, El Salvador is one of the world's biggest producers of geothermal energy. This is one advantage the Salvadoran President seeks to exploit.
Geothermal energy uses heat trapped beneath the Earth's surface to generate electricity. With El Salvador possessing 23 active volcanoes, it is no surprise that more than a quarter of the country’s entire electricity production is supplied by geothermal power.
Bitcoin’s energy consumption and huge carbon footprint have come under scrutiny in recent months, especially after Tesla’s refusal to accept Bitcoin payments, citing environmental concerns. And with mining pools located in several parts of the world, the overall energy bill is massive.
Though several institutions grew wary of the cryptocurrency following Tesla’s decision,
El Salvador's recent moves might help to eradicate any negativity surrounding Bitcoin's growing popularity.
Bukele himself is particular about improving Bitcoin’s green energy statistics, and environmentally friendly appeal.
"I’ve just instructed the President of LaGeo (our state-owned geothermal electric company), to put up a plan to offer facilities for Bitcoin mining with very cheap, 100% clean, 100% renewable, 0-emissions energy from our volcanoes,” the President tweeted some weeks ago. “This is going to evolve fast!"
Several promoters of the digital currency, including Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, believe Bitcoin mining could lead to more renewable energy projects, such as the one being announced in El Salvador.
How Does This Affect El Salvador?
With the Bitcoin hashrate down due to recent events in China, El Salvador is shaping up to be quite an appealing destination for the newly displaced miners.
Looking to attract crypto traders and investors, fun-loving Nayib Bukele even shared a list of reasons to move to El Salvador.
"Great weather, world-class surfing beaches, beachfront properties for sale..,” the President tweeted, along with a list of other enticing perks that got even figures like Binance’s CEO, CZ, salivating.
With 6.4 million residents and a GDP of $27 billion, El Salvador is a struggling nation. Bitcoin, meanwhile, has a market cap of $680 billion. Despite criticisms, the leading crypto token has been suggested to be a strong viable booster to Salvadoran economy. Assuming one percent of El Savador’s GDP is invested in Bitcoin, the country’s total GDP could very well rise by more than 30 percent with a bull run. President Bukele’s enthusiasm might very well be perfectly reasonable after all.
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