The environmental impact of crypto mining is something that no one can deny. However, it is not a big deal with its 0.1% contribution to greenhouse gas release.
The true problem is the strain a crypt mining farm puts on the local grid. In most cases around the world, local power producers underestimated the hungriness of mining facilities for electricity.
While it is an issue in places where the power demands of the population are high and renewables are in short supply, the presence of mining farms can be a good thing in places that have an abundance of electricity and lots of people who cannot afford it.
Gridless Compute makes power cheap for locals
Situated in Africa, Gridless Compute is an interesting facility powered entirely by hydro energy.
By placing itself close to a village and sharing its energy with locals, the project managed to reduce the price of electricity for over 2 thousand people (about 500 families) shrinking their monthly power expenses from $10 per family to just $4.
The Kenyan village enjoys cheaper energy while a large bitcoin mining group works to build a better infrastructure to facilitate its own business.
It is a mutually beneficial coexistence enabled by the abundance of relatively cheap hydro energy readily available to any consumers who are willing to pay for it.
Since the rural territory does not have any other huge power consumers and the local population does not have sufficient income to afford electricity in their homes, this particular case looks very good for publicity and may set a valuable precedent.
There are other similar places in South America known for their hydro energy, Africa, and South-East Asia.
We should focus on placing mining facilities in similar spots around the globe
The results of this cooperation between multiple parties (the government, venture capital investors, and locals) are encouraging. With Kazakhstan, Germany, and the US all stepping back from their promises to support miners, places like Africa can be the next best thing.
Countries with abundant green energy sources will be incentivized to invest in wind, solar, and hydro. Businesses that want to benefit from these projects will contribute to building better infrastructure and making power more affordable in poor rural areas.