Counties in Washington State Pausing Crypto Mining Power Requests

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Power prices and consumption have become a contentious subject within the crypto mining space, as it’s often these very same prices that can make or break a mining farm. In an interesting move, the state of New York has given its local municipalities the power to decide their own rates for crypto miners. Over in electricity rich Washington state, there is slightly different take on these new powers that municipalities have been given. While the state’s municipalities have received the exact same powers as those in New York, the state is in fact pausing energy applications for crypto miners.

Hydroelectric Power Hub

Washington state is one of the largest exporters of general power in the US and the largest exporter of hydroelectric power. The state accounts for almost one-quarter of the nation’s total net hydroelectric generation. Hydroelectricity comes at cheaper rates than coal, gas, or nuclear power due to its renewable and nearly infinite potential. This means the state enjoys one of the lowest rates of electricity in the country, and crypto miners have been flocking to Washington in droves as a result. In fact, so many crypto miners have moved to the state that local municipalities have had to pause applications due to a spike in energy demands.

Three Counties on Crypto Mining Shutdown

Franklin, Chelan, and Mason county are so far the only three counties in the state of Washington to have paused applications for more crypto mining power applications. In April, the Chelan municipality cut of power to three “unauthorized” crypto mines due to fear of public safety. Local infrastructure isn’t prepared or capable of dealing with the vast amounts of power that these mining farms draw from the national power grid. Franklin is the latest to join the group following hordes of miners flocking to the state thanks to its cheap power and cooler weather conditions – ideal for crypto mining.

Other Crypto Miners Not Faring So Well

The increased cost of power for crypto miners around the globe – combined with falling crypto prices – has forced a number of crypto mining farms to shut down. Most recent to close its doors is HashFlare, a cloud mining company based in Scotland. Over in China, several large farms were wiped out during severe flooding, this had a massive knock-on effect and put a big dent in the total Bitcoin network hash rate.
While the cost of power is increasing for crypto miners, the need for crypto miners is also growing. With more people beginning to use Bitcoin – and other cryptos for that matter – more transactions daily need to be confirmed and added to the blockchain. This requires an ever-increasing number of miners. Power consumption is an ongoing heated debate between crypto enthusiasts and naysayers, and it’s a debate that will continue to burn the midnight oil for years to come.