Bitcoin mining banned in NY's Plattsburgh over electricity usage

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The Plattsburgh mayor's office claims that the aim of the law is to consider "regulations before commercial cryptocurrency mining operations results in irreversible change to the character and direction of the city". The reason is because the small town has the "cheapest electricity in the world", as Mayor Colin Read told Motherboard. Whether that is so it is much lower than the 10 cents on average the rest of the country pays.

Cryptocurrency mining is more profitable when the cost of electricity is lower. On the list of USA energy usage and payments, NY state is even higher with an average of nearly 15 cents per kilowatt-hour; Plattsburgh residents are paying effectively 1/3rd of what the rest of the state is paying. As the profit margins for Bitcoin mining diminish the hash rate will start to drop, bringing the industry back to an equilibrium - in theory.

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A cryptocurrency mining computer array owned by Digital Skynet is already humming away - and sucking up lots of electricity - in Massena. Motherboard has noted that Coinmint operates in the biggest Bitcoin mining operation in Plattsburgh, and apparently used about 10 percent of city's total power budget in January and February. The city now has a budget of 104 megawatt-hours per month; if it exceeds that, Plattsburgh is forced to buy electricity on the open market. That proposal itself followed complaints from residents over the huge jump in their electricity bills. Given this background one can understand why the bill came to council and was passed without a single negative vote.

The statement, from the office of commission chair John B. Rhodes, explained that certain upstate municipal authorities have recently been receiving interest, and in some cases patronage, from large-scale cryptocurrency miners. In simplified form the process is described in the video below. And then there would be no cheap power left for our residents. Officials is Plattsburgh are concerned similar computer installations are using too much power. This has created shortages of chips in areas such as gaming and even astronomical research.

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The city has approved the temporary moratorium while it decides how to handle cryptocurrency mining. Provisions of the ban The law is set out in detail at this website. It will take effect once the mayor approves it and it's filed with the NY secretary of state.

The upstate NY town officially banned new bitcoin mining operations for up to 18 months following a unanimous city council vote on Thursday - becoming the first city in the U.S.to block miners.

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