Can Cryptocurrency Mining Drive Further Growth to the Clean Energy Sector?
Although cryptocurrency mining contributes significantly to the greenhouse effect, the crypto mining industry may be the answer to further investment and growth for the clean energy sector. According to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) report published on September 16, 2018, while many cryptocurrency miners use non-renewable sources, the cryptocurrency mining industry could benefit significantly if they leveraged excess clean energy. Using excess renewable energy can also stimulate additional investment into the renewable energy industry.
Mining Cryptocurrencies With Excess Clean Energy
While renewable energies are great for the planet, the generation process often produces excess energy that ends up being wasted. For example, on a very sunny day, solar panels can generate more power than the demand. The grids are overloaded with energy, and the renewable energy goes to waste. Storing the excess energy is often more expensive than wasting it since storing them in Li-ion batteries are very costly. Unfortunately, this is something that happens quite often and is not cost-efficient and economically sustainable for the clean energy industry.
According to WEF, the amount of energy gained from renewable resources will increase by 2.9 percent every year growing from 22 percent in 2012 to 29 percent by 2040. While these numbers represent positive growth for the clean energy sector, excessive energy generation will be a big problem for the grid, consumers, and investors.
Cryptocurrency mining may, however, be the answer to the renewable energy sector’s excess energy problem. Mining cryptocurrencies with excess clean energy can address the excessive energy generation issue. As seen on GreenTechMedia, for the cryptocurrency industry, it would reduce financial risks for crypto miners as they are able to leverage clean energy waste.
Furthermore, it could kickstart greater interest, development, and investment in renewable technologies. Instead of leveraging non-renewable sources to turn electricity consumption into financial profits, cryptocurrency miners could use clean energy excess to reduce their costs and carbon dioxide emissions while driving growth for the renewable energy sector.
Benefits of the New Model on an Individual, Commercial, and Societal Level
WEF noted that cryptocurrency mining with excess clean energy not only has a direct impact on the clean energy sector and cryptocurrency mining industry but can impact societies on an individual, commercial and city level.
On an individual level, a person’s home could generate additional income. The concept is most appropriate for smaller homes where power is generated by personal solar or storage systems. Here, the individual can leverage the excess renewable energy to mine cryptocurrencies and generate an income by setting up the system. The model can also have commercial and industrial applications. In areas where storage or transmission of excess clean energy is expensive, companies and industries can also partake in cryptocurrency mining to generate additional profit.
Cryptocurrency mining using excess renewable energy can also significantly impact a city and society, transforming it into a circular society where waste and energy leakage is being reused. For example, when key stakeholders holdings in a building, like the owners of the apartment, business in a financial area, or business parks, share the cryptocurrency mining equipment and storage assets required to mine, they can also split and share the profits gained. Not only is energy waste consumed, but the model could lead to an eventual decarbonization in urban areas. The WEF believes that this approach could even kickstart the era of smart cities as buildings, towns, and cities, shift to a greener environment and economy.