Bitcoin Mining to harness onsite natural gas emissions: Ark Invest
Bitcoin mining is highly scalable and modular and can be shifted to the well site to harness methane emissions
By Shashank Bhardwaj
A recent Ark Invest report's data reveals yet another use for Bitcoin (BTC) mining in sustainability and energy. The research indicates a huge possibility for converting methane emissions into energy for Bitcoin mining, which will greatly increase the amount of solar and wind energy produced on-site at wells.
With an extra 125 billion cubic metres of methane emissions, gas flaring emissions total 140 billion cubic metres annually. If left unchecked, the gas flaring results in an annual waste of 265 billion cubic metres of natural gas emissions. The amount of methane estimated to be required to maintain the present Bitcoin hash rate is only 25 billion cubic metres, though.
Because of the oil industry's preexisting investments in flaring operations, it is hard to harness all of the emissions. However, methane capture offers a workable and immediate option. Sam Korus of Ark Invest tweeted that wells on-site account for more than half of the methane released. This makes the site ideal for mining to absorb and use such pollutants effectively.
Additionally, it could create power at prices significantly less than what mining companies currently pay instead of venting the methane. The mining sector has recently begun to demonstrate evidence of improved energy efficiency and a turn toward sustainability.
The Bitcoin Mining Council published its network assessment for Q2 last week. It showed that the industry is using more sustainable energy compared to the same quarter in the previous years. The recent figures show an increase of six percent in the use of sustainable energy in Bitcoin mining. The council considers Bitcoin mining "one of the most sustainable industries globally" in conclusion to their results.
There has been a concerted effort on the part of the Bitcoin mining industry to adopt sustainable means of energy. Environmentalists previously criticised the sector for its excessive carbon footprint. These claims are not new, even though the new data supporting them keeps pouring in. There are firms and companies already doing this. In February, the chief marketing officer of Slush Pool, Kristian Csepcsa, spoke about how miners assist oil companies with flare reduction by operating their natural gas generators that would otherwise be burned off.
Time will tell if these ideas lead to a brighter future for Bitcoin mining and energy production as the sector adapts to international sustainability norms.
The writer is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash
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