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El Salvador Plans To Mine Bitcoin Using Energy From Volcanoes

June 10, 2021 9:07 am
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El Salvador Plans To Mine Bitcoin Using Energy From Volcanoes

What Happened: Only a day after passing a bill to make Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) a legal tender in El Salvador, the nation appears to be moving towards harnessing renewable energy from its volcanoes to mine the cryptocurrency.

The country’s president Nayib Bukele said in a Tweet that he had instructed a state-owned geothermal electric company to put up a plan to offer Bitcoin mining facilities with 100% renewable energy.

Only two hours after his initial announcement, Bukele said, “Our engineers just informed me that they dug a new well, that will provide approximately 95MW of 100% clean, 0 emissions geothermal energy from our volcanos.”

The process is reportedly already in motion to design a Bitcoin mining hub around the site.

Why It Matters: El Salvador has 23 active volcanoes, and geothermal energy contributes more than 20% of the energy consumed in the region, according to a report, which also confirms the nation uses only a third of its 644 MW resource potential.

Bukele’s swift execution also came as a surprise to many, as the president said he was only just starting to think of it late on Tuesday night.

“We’re not thinking of [bitcoin] mining,” he said in a Twitter Spaces chat, adding, “but we can do something to promote mining, of course. And we have some right now thinking of it, I mean, I haven’t thought of it – but right now thinking of it.”

One of the call’s participants was Fred Thiel, CEO of US-based Bitcoin mining giant Marathon Digital Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:MARA), who commented on Bukele’s announcement.

Read also: El Salvador Becomes First Country In The World To Adopt Bitcoin As Legal Tender

“I was on the call last night. Congratulations. My company is one of the largest publicly traded US bitcoin miners (NASDAQ:MARA) and founding member of the Bitcoin Mining Council. I am very interested in speaking with your team re mining using geothermal energy in El Salvador (sic),” he said.

Price Action: Bitcoin traded 8% higher following the news, reaching $36,905 at the time of writing. The leading cryptocurrency saw a 4% increase in trading volume, which reached $49.7 billion over the past 24-hours.

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