After China imposed a ban on Bitcoin mining last summer, many mining companies immediately found safe haven in the state of Texas, ruled by crypto-friendly Greg Abbott. In a few short years, the oil and gas-rich US state has welcomed thousands of miners and emerged as the world’s cryptocurrency mining hub.
Bitcoin mining in Texas
In a recent interview the president of the Texas Blockchain Council, Lee Bratcher said:
“Texas has some of the lowest energy costs in the world. Wyoming and Arizona took the lead in creating state regulatory and public policy frameworks that were friendly towards blockchain technology. Texas is fast becoming a state known for tech innovation and has a large enough economy to be a leader on the national stage. We formed the Texas Blockchain Council so that companies and individuals who would like to see Texas lead in the space have a place to organize and innovate”.
Bitcoin mines are replacing Alcoa’s old aluminium factories, such as the largest in North America, which is located near Austin and owned by Whinstone US. The facility, which brought 145 jobs, certainly could not replace the large plant that closed three years ago, but is trying to create a positive spin-off around it.
According to Whinstone CEO Chad Everett Harris, work is underway to double the plant’s mining capacity and make it the largest Bitcoin mining facility in the world.
Texas Governor Abbot recently asked the Bitcoin miners for help in stabilizing the electrical grid to avoid a repeat of the serious problems that occurred exactly a year ago when a terrible storm hit the state, causing a long and widespread blackout. What the miners are trying to experiment with is the use of renewable energy to power their energy-intensive computers.
Geosyn Mining co-founder Caleb Ward about a new facility in Texas opening in January 2022 said:
“We have launched our first bitcoin mine in downtown Fort Worth, which will be a showpiece for our larger mine located right outside the city. We’re using income from this 20,000-square-foot facility outside of Fort Worth to bootstrap a significant solar power build”.
Texas, the mining capital
According to the latest figures, there are currently already 27 medium to large local Bitcoin mining companies according to counts by the Texas Blockchain Council.
Don Huffines, one of Abbott’s challengers in the next local election, scheduled for next November, recently said he will be even more pro-Bitcoin than Abbott.
Poolin CEO Kevin Pan, who heads one of the world’s leading Bitcoin mining companies and accounts for about 13% of the global network hashrate, recently said that Texas will likely become the mining capital of the world in the next two years.