13/02/2018 11:41 GMT Mining Bitcoin In Iceland Will Soon Use More Electricity Than Its Own Population 'We are spending tens or maybe hundreds of megawatts on producing something that has no tangible existence' By Thomas Tamblyn
In Iceland, the act of ‘mining’ Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will soon require more electricity than its entire population needs to power its homes.
It’s an astonishing statistic and one that highlights the gold rush that’s taking place around cryptocurrencies.
With a finite amount of cryptocurrency in the world to be ‘mined’, Iceland has become something of a nirvana for a wave of companies that have sprung up and are looking to make as much money as they can before cryptocurrencies reach their set limits. Wolfgang Kaehler via Getty Images Iceland has vast amount of renewable energy that it can harness, including this Geothermic Power Station at Lake Myvatn in Northeast Iceland.
Thanks to its cold climate (perfect for naturally cooling large computer servers) and abundant supply of renewable energy Iceland is perfect for running huge buildings filled with computers.
By the end of this year, mining cryptocurrencies in Iceland will require upwards of 100MW , more than the electricity needed to power the homes of Iceland’s 340,000 residents.
While this is great for the companies who have moved in, it’s not exactly a long-term solution.
Every cryptocurrency has to be ‘mined’ or created by asking computers to perform incredibly complex mathematical equations. After a certain amount of time a coin is then produced and handed to the owner of the computers. Related......