Sustainable Bitcoin mining gets a boost from the joint venture between mostly hydro-powered BTC miners Merkle Standard and infrastructure provider Bitmain.
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Beijing-based Bitmain has partnered with a United States-based sustainable Bitcoin miner, Merkle Standard, which will contribute capital investment, expertise and parts.
As part of the joint venture, Bitmain will contribute to the development of up to 500 MW of clean digital mining infrastructure at Merkle Standard’s hydro-powered facilities in Eastern Washington.
Bitmain is a household name in the Bitcoin (BTC) ecosystem, famed for the Antminer brand, the name behind popular Bitcoin ASIC miners the S9 and S19. Merkle Standard claims to be a carbon-conscious BTC miner, keen to become net carbon negative by year-end. Merkle Standard will install up to 150,000 Bitmain mining machines thanks to the venture.
Ruslan Zinurov, CEO of Merkle Standard, told Cointelegraph that the partnership with Bitmain will “catapult our growth plan of building one of North America’s largest sustainable digital asset mining platforms.”
In a further commentary, Josh Zappala, chief strategy officer at Merkle Standard, underlined the benefits BTC mining brings to the social fabric of local communities. With aspirations to become one of the area’s largest employers, the joint venture will introduce “35–50 full-time jobs to the site,” while “supporting local business.” He told Cointelegraph:
“Due to the flexible characteristics of the data center’s power load, we are suited to be the ideal power consumer for our power providers and look forward to providing additional support to the community.”
No strangers to scrutiny, Merkle Standard’s move reflects the trend of BTC miners worldwide upping their ESG credentials. The Bitcoin Mining Council boasted a sustainable energy mix of 58.5% in the fourth quarter of 2021, while miners in Norway are even using waste heat to dry out lumber.
According to the press release, data center development has entered the first phase of production at the Merkle Standard mothership in Eastern Washington. The 225MW site will expand to 500MW over the long term.
The new equipment, including Bitmain’s S19J Pro, S19 XP, and S19+ hydro miners will come online in Eastern Washington, although Merkle Standard nods towards “various expansion locations” in 2022. Ultimately, the joint venture is one part of CEO Zinurov’s vision to “achieve industry-leading power efficiency.”