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El Salvador Starts Using Geothermal Energy From Volcanoes to Mine Bitcoin


coincodex.com 01 October 2021 11:10, UTC
Reading time: ~2 m

Key highlights:

  • El Salvador has started mining Bitcoin by using geothermal energy from a volcano
  • The project is still in a testing phase, but El Salvador has already mined a small amount of BTC
  • The Bitcoin price has seen double-digit gains today

El Salvador starts volcano-powered Bitcoin mining

El Salvador has started its program of mining Bitcoin using geothermal energy produced by volcanoes, according to the country’s president Nayib Bukele.

Bukele says that the project is still in the testing stage, and that the installation of the necessary infrastructure is still ongoing. However, the facility is already mining Bitcoin in a smaller capacity, with Bukele sharing a screenshot of a 0.01 BTC mining reward.

We’re still testing and installing, but this is officially the first #Bitcoin mining from the #volcanode ?

— Nayib Bukele ?? (@nayibbukele) October 1, 2021

The Bitcoin mining program comes on the heels of Bitcoin becoming legal tender in El Salvador – the country’s Bitcoin law came into effect on September 7. The law establishes Bitcoin as legal tender alongside the US dollar, and BTC can be used to pay taxes and purchase goods and services in the country.

El Salvador has over 20 volcanoes, and geothermal energy represents a large part of the country’s energy production. Using geothermal energy to mine Bitcoin is not a new development in itself – for example, this type of energy is used to mine Bitcoin in Iceland. 

Currently, the Bitcoin block reward is 6.25 BTC. With new blocks being added to the Bitcoin blockchain approximately every 10 minutes, there’s approximately 900 BTC being mined every day. According to the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI), Bitcoin mining consumes an estimated 99.17 TWh annually, which is more than the  electricity consumption of the Philippines. Using renewable sources of energy like geothermal energy could go a long way to reducing Bitcoin mining’s impact on the environment.

Bitcoin has been performing very well in the market today – the world’s largest cryptocurrency increased by 8.6% in the last 24 hours, bringing the price above $47,000. The bullish price action has resulted in increased interest for cryptocurrency forecasts.

For example, popular Bitcoin market analyst PlanB noted that the $43,834 price level at which Bitcoin closed September aligns almost perfectly with his stock-to-flow Bitcoin price prediction model. According to PlanB, he expects Bitcoin to be trading at $63,000 or above by the end of October. 

Next targets: Oct>63k, Nov>98k, Dec>135k? pic.twitter.com/C45nfQkQSC

— PlanB (@100trillionUSD) October 1, 2021

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