The U.S. has become the world’s top destination for crypto miners after China, and in the U.S. Georgia has emerged as a leader in cryptocurrency mining because of the state’s low costs and renewable energy programs.
The Bitcoin network depends on a mining process by which transactions are verified and recorded on the blockchain. In order to do so, Bitcoin miners must use powerful computers to complete complex mathematical functions. This is an energy-intensive, 24/7 process.
Cryptocurrency mining facilities need massive amounts of computer servers and have enormous energy bills. Hundreds of thousands of mining machines are plugged into electrical grids across the country, with some states trying to lure in miners, Fortune reported. Other states are banning crypto mining due to its draining of electricity grids.
Georgia isn’t the only state trying to attract miners. Another popular crypto mining destination is Kentucky, which offers tax breaks for miners. Texas and Wyoming also have developing cryptocurrency ecosystems due to state support and regulations.
Georgia has come to the forefront as a “go-to for miners,” according to digital Currency Group company Foundry USA, the world’s most giant mining pool. As of Jan. 31, 2022, miners in Georgia were responsible for more than 34 percent of the computing power. This is nearly double its share since 2021’s third quarter.
Georgia’s low power prices are attractive to miners. And its nuclear and solar power allow mining companies to label themselves as sustainable or emissions-free. Also, state regulators have been wooing miners by being crypto mining friendly. Regulators have urged miners to make use of a solar program that allows companies to offset their emissions with renewable energy credits and access day-ahead power prices, Atlanta Business Chronicle reported.
A consortium of crypto companies, including Bitmain Technologies Ltd., announced that they expect to bring 56,000 miners to Georgia in September.
There are already a number of cryptocurrency mining companies investing in Georgia, such as Mawson Infrastructure. There’s also Utah-based CleanSpark Inc., which has a $145-million cryptocurrency mining facility in Norcross and one in College Park; and ISW Holdings Inc. and Bitman Technologies are investing $62 million into 56,000 mining facilities in Georgia.
More mining companies could be on the way. Legislation was recently introduced that would give tax breaks for cryptocurrency mining facilities of at least 75,000 square feet.