The En + Group, the world’s largest manufacturer of low-carbon aluminum and the largest private hydropower generator, has established its first joint venture in the field of crypto mining.
The new company, called Bit +, will focus on creating facilities that support low carbon crypto mining. The En + Group partner at Bit + is the Russian company BitRiver, which offers hosting services and turnkey solutions for large institutional crypto mining operations.
BitRiver currently operates the largest data center providing colocation services for bitcoin mining (BTC) in the Russian Federation and offers similar services across the country and for CIS neighbors.
The first result of the Bit + project is the installation of a new facility near BitRiver’s existing data center in Bratsk in the Irkutsk region of the Russian Federation. The En + Group has provided 10 MW of electricity for the plant, which consists of modular crypto mining units and is already in operation. The companies plan to scale the capacity of the plant to around 40 MW.
In the initial phase, the system consists of 14 modular units, each of which is a converted shipping container that is as big as a full-fledged crypto-mining data center. Each unit can accommodate up to 400 S19 Pro-Miners from Bitmain.
In an official statement, the En + Group revealed a correlation regarding the choice of the Irkutsk region and its obvious feasibility for low-carbon solutions for cryptocurrency mining:
“Our energy systems in the [Irkutsk] The region produces low-carbon, low-cost electricity from renewable sources, and we can provide surplus energy to these partnerships. In addition, the low average annual temperature reduces the energy consumption of the data centers, makes them more efficient and further minimizes their carbon footprint. “
As reported, the high energy consumption remains an Achilles’ heel for the crypto sector, especially for coins like Bitcoin, whose consensus algorithm is computationally intensive and therefore requires an extraordinary amount of energy to sustain it.
Several energy experts have tried to direct the energy debate about Bitcoin away from energy consumption. Instead, they have focused on analyzing where this energy is being produced and how it is being produced, arguing that the most important thing is to ensure that fewer harmful decisions are made at the power generation stage.
Given that financial and geopolitical actors are now entering the final game of global climate policy, it remains to be seen to what extent greening crypto’s energy consumption, rather than reducing it, will be enough to make the sector truly sustainable.