Te a highly-attended public hearing held on May 14, 2018, the Chelan County public utility district (PUD) approved a three-month extension of a moratorium on the approval of electrified service for fresh cryptocurrency mining operations. The low energy costs te the Mid-Columbia Basin have attracted cryptocurrency miners from spil early spil 2013 . However, when Bitcoin soared te value ter late 2018, the region spotted a large increase ter inquiries and applications from cryptocurrency miners.
The current moratorium ter Chelan County wasgoed unanimously approved ter March, with officials requesting time to review and assess the potential impacts of enlargened cryptocurrency mining and electro-therapy requests within their communities. Citing similar energy concerns, the City of Plattsburgh ter Fresh York became the very first municipality to verbod cryptocurrency mining te early March, enacting an 18-month moratorium on all cryptocurrency mining operations.
Chelan County is one of three rural Washington counties (Chelan, Douglas, and Grant) served by five hydroelectric dams operating ter the Mid-Columbia Basin. The dams generate approximately six times the amount of energy required by residents and businesses, permitting the PUDs to subsidize circunscrito energy cost by exporting the surplus energy at premium rates. While cryptocurrency mining operations may bring economic value to the rural region of Chelan County and surrounding areas, residents are also worried that the enhanced específico request for electro-stimulation will result ter an increase ter household energy costs.
The availability of low-cost tens unit has also attracted unauthorized mining operations to Chelan County and the Mid-Columbia Basin. Thesis operations are sometimes established te residential areas, where the infrastructure and equipment are not designed to support strong geysers of electro-stimulation. Chelan County PUD cited the risks posed by thesis unauthorized operations ter its initial announcement of the moratorium, emphasizing the health and safety risk to its staff and county residents. Shortly after implementing the moratorium, the Chelan County PUD directed its staff to enforce compliance with the moratorium by imposing fees and fines, disconnecting service, and reporting the unauthorized use of energy to law enforcement spil theft.
While confinements on cryptocurrency mining activity have primarily bot implemented at a regional level, governments could take steps to regulate mining activity at a larger scale. Te January, Bloomberg reported that China wasgoed discussing taking steps to regulate energy usage by cryptocurrency mining operations, a stir that could have a large influence on the universal mining industry. Given the enlargened attention to the energy requests of proof-of-work cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, it seems likely that energy regulation will play an significant role ter the increasingly ingewikkeld regulatory environment for cryptocurrencies.