U.S. Congressman Pete Sessions of Texas made a bold statement about the impact of bitcoin (BTC) mining not only on his state, but on the United States as a whole.
A Texas spokesperson for bitcoin mining tweeted on Tuesday that “bitcoin mining will play a critical role in restoring energy dependency in the United States.” His statement caused a mixed reaction from both supporters and opponents. Wyoming Senator Cynthia Loomis was among supporters who responded to his tweet with a brief “Really.”
Both legislators have been strong supporters of guidelines that support innovation in the crypto industry, not just for miners. As US consumers grapple with rising gas prices due to global tensions, debate has flared up about how the country can reduce its dependence on external energy sources.
The sessions’ perspective highlights a growing body of research that indicates that BTC mining innovations could have global applications in industrial energy consumption and production.
With Texas accounting for more than 14% of the country’s total bitcoin hash rate, the stability of the state’s electrical grid and the environmental impact of miners are under increasing criticism, as they are in other mining hubs around the world.
Despite these concerns, several researchers have suggested that the growing Texas mining market could reduce the net environmental impact and energy needs of the public power grid.
A research article from March 2021 describes how failover data centers can increase the use of renewable energy. The flexible data center generates its own power either at a small, dedicated renewable energy power plant or receives power from the grid, depending on the current state of the grid.
Texas is already the largest producer of wind power in the country, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Thus, miners can already have access to renewable energy sources when needed. Encouraging miners to use the failover data center model could spur increased availability and reliability of renewable energy. The newspaper stated:
In this way, IPS can contribute to network stability by using electricity generated locally rather than fed into the grid.
Software solutions company Lancium published similar reviews last October. He concluded that as the mining industry grows and implements more operations for the resilient data center model, it is more likely to prevent grid power shortages while facilitating the growth of renewable energy. Researcher Joshua D. Rhodes in the article:
“As grids move towards incorporating higher levels of intermittent resources such as wind and solar power, elastic demand will play an increasingly important role in maintaining the stability of the grid’s electrical system.”
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Texas is an important bitcoin mining hub in the United States with Hive Blockchain, Riot Blockchain, Argo Blockchain and others operating in the Lone Star State.