Oil-producing giant Exxon Mobil is currently conducting an innovative program that would allow Bitcoin (BTC) to be mined through the utilization of surplus naturally occurring gas. This program which is still in its pilot phase would utilize gas from the oil wells of the North Dakota region.
Due to the unavailability of adequate pipelines, the excess natural gas which would be used as fuel for the Bitcoin mining systems would either have been lost through the procedure of flaring or residue of evaporation. Based on accessible data on the gas-powered BTC mining program, an estimated supply of 18 million cubic feet of gas is expected to be exhausted monthly.
In a joint partnership between Crusoe Energy Systems Inc. and Exxon Mobil, the generators to be used to run the mining rigs would be powered with natural gas collected from the Bakken Shale basin oil well.
With this pilot project underway, other territories like the Qua Iboe terminal in Nigeria, Guyana, Alaska, and Germany have been proposed as Exxon Mobil’s next stop for similar projects.
In a frantic bid to heed the World Bank’s call to end the routine flaring of gas due to its many hazardous effects on the climate, Exxon Mobil has undeniably taken a major leap in the right direction.
Sarah Nordin, a spokeswoman at Exxon Mobil stated that the company is working hard to meet the World Bank’s 2030 call. The company is therefore constantly exploring newer technologies that would help mitigate the amount of gas that is flared in their different operation sites.
Clampdown on Bitcoin mining Across Board
Coming at a time when national leaders are having major conversations on blockchain technology, cryptocurrency, and in particular the overwhelming energy requirement for Bitcoin mining, this pilot program by Exxon Mobil seems to be coming at a time when it may face a massive stress test.
In a very recent development, China, which has placed a blanket ban on cryptocurrency and Bitcoin mining, shut down a mining facility and also confiscated the equipment found in that facility.
This outright embargo on BTC mining in China even at the local level has forced miners to seek territories such as North America and Vietnam which allow their trade.
A bill sent to the European Union seeking for a ban on Bitcoin mining was also read recently but after much deliberation, it found no wings to fly through as members voted against it.