- El Salvador has hundreds of megawatts of untapped geothermal energy potential.
- Bukele has revealed his plans to fully utilize the country’s volcanic geothermal energy of which a lot is transported to other cities or lost due to oversupply.
The president of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, was in the news recently for revealing his intention to make Bitcoin legal tender, which he achieved this week. He is trending again for deciding to conduct Bitcoin mining with the country’s volcanic geothermal energy.
During an interview with Nic Carter on a Twitter Spaces room, he was asked if he had any plans on Bitcoin mining. Bukele then revealed his plans to fully utilize the country’s volcanic geothermal energy of which a lot are transported to other cities or lost to oversupply.
We want to promote industrial parks where you can set up your factory and you will receive cheap, clean, renewable [energy].
He also mentioned that Bitcoin miners could find the park the best location, and has instructed La Geo, the state-owned electric company, to make provisions for that.
I’ve just instructed the president of @LaGeoSV (our state-owned geothermal electric company), to put up a plan to offer facilities for #Bitcoin mining with very cheap, 100% clean, 100% renewable, 0 emissions energy from our volcanos 🌋
This is going to evolve fast! 🇸🇻 pic.twitter.com/1316DV4YwT
— Nayib Bukele 🇸🇻 (@nayibbukele) June 9, 2021
El Salvador looks prepared for this as they have hundreds of megawatts of untapped geothermal potential. They also have a network of underutilized power plants. Bukele believes that it is cheaper to plug into the plants than to transport the power elsewhere.
Our engineers just informed me that they dug a new well that, and will provide approximately 95MW of 100% clean, 0 emissions geothermal energy from our volcanoes.
El Salvador could become the largest Bitcoin mining location
Bukele’s effort to make El Salvador a cryptocurrency hub is indisputable. Before his announcement that he intends to send a bill to parliament to make Bitcoin legal tender, his Twitter profile photo featured him with red laser eyes. He has changed the photo to an edited image of himself with blue laser eyes. This is very familiar among cryptocurrency enthusiasts. He has also made it easier for crypto-related startups to open offices in El Salvador. Justin Sun of Tron revealed in an announcement that his company will become the first crypto organization to open an office in the country.
Bitcoin has come under severe criticisms for consuming too much energy. It was reported that Bitcoin consumes more energy than some countries like Argentina. In March 2021, Bank of America analysts estimated that Bitcoin’s CO2 general emission had surged to about 60 million tons. This is equivalent to the exhaust of 9 million cars. This has forced environmental activists and key industry players to call for Bitcoin mining to be moved to the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism. It has also been suggested that Bitcoin mining should be powered by renewable energy.
Iceland has become a very popular location for Bitcoin mining due to its large volcanic geothermal energy. Some of their excess geothermal energy is used to produce and refine aluminum. Bitcoin is identified as the best candidate to convert wasted energy into revenue, something El Salvador wants to do to become one of the largest locations of Bitcoin mining.