As a severe winter storm looms on Texas, crypto miners are turning down operations to help lessen the pressure on the state’s already troubled electrical infrastructure.
One of the biggest publicly listed crypto mining businesses in America, Riot Blockchain, began turning down electricity to its Rockdale mine on Tuesday.
“As the storm has persisted, we have continued to cut our power use by 98 percent to 99 percent . So today, we are just consuming 1 percent to 2 percent of power.”
Trystine Payfer, Riot’s head of communications.
Payfer told CNBC Riot will continue to regulate its power use as needed until there is “no significant stress on the ERCOT grid.”
Crypto miners join hands to help Texas
Several other crypto miners across Texas have followed suit in voluntarily limiting energy use in the run-up to the cold blast.
The CEO of Rhodium Enterprises, a fully integrated bitcoin miner employing liquid-cooled infrastructure, tweeted that Texas-based bitcoin miners were reducing their load starting Wednesday to “help offer surplus power reserves” for the storm.
“We are happy to assist stabilize the grid and help our fellow Texans remain warm,” wrote Rhodium CEO Nathan Nichols.
Other crypto miners stated they would respond in real-time to the requirements of the grid. The grid is named ERCOT, short for the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the body entrusted with running it. To work successfully, ERCOT requires a perfect balance between supply and demand.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott recently requested locally-based Bitcoin miners to assist the state get through winter by shutting off their workstations.
Reports have surfaced saying Abbott made the request at a meeting last October with leaders from Texas’ expanding Bitcoin mining community.
How Texas is coping with the winter storm?
In brief, Texas officials have developed several initiatives to preserve electricity energy for coping with the oncoming rainstorm. The essential components of those systems include incentives to significant power users crypto miners for restricting their activities during the most significant power demand hours.
According to Payfer, Riot and other miners may reap various benefits by helping ERCOT simplify power grid operations during storms. The rewards might include participation in the load management programs or any other service and fixed lower power prices agreements for an extended period.