Kazakhstan Might Build Nuclear Power Plant to fulfill Crypto Mining Needs

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Key Takeaways:

  • According to the Russia Today report, Kazakhstan is considering building a nuclear plant in response to the rapid growth of cryptocurrency mining.
  • Minister of Energy Magzum Myrzagaliev said on Tuesday that the government is considering two locations for a thermal power plant that could help close the capacity gap.
  • According to the energy minister, the need to build a nuclear power plant is “clear”. 
  • The government is currently in discussions with Russia’s Rosatom, which has built plants in China, India, and Belarus.
  • Kazakhstan’s goal of becoming carbon-neutral by 2060 would be aided by construction. 
Kazakhstan Might Build Nuclear Power Plant
Kazakhstan Might Build Nuclear Power Plant

According to the Russia Today report, Kazakhstan is considering building a nuclear plant in response to the rapid growth of cryptocurrency mining, which has resulted in severe electricity shortages in the Central Asian country. Minister of Energy Magzum Myrzagaliev said on Tuesday that the government is considering two locations for a thermal power plant that could help close the capacity gap. Currently, coal is used in around 70% of the country’s power plants.

Kazakhstan, the world’s largest uranium miner, has been considering building a nuclear plant for over a decade. In the summer of 2021, the country began to experience power shortages, soon after the Chinese government made cryptocurrency mining illegal. Miners chose to transport their equipment to Kazakhstan, where electricity is cheap. As a result, Nur-Sultan had significant energy problems and was forced to buy electricity from Russia to make up the difference.

Cryptocurrency mining solves computational math problems with the help of electricity and high-powered computers. The solutions are so complicated that they are impossible to solve by hand and would be difficult to complete even with a regular computer. The computer owner is rewarded with a cryptocurrency coin, such as bitcoin, once a problem is solved.

According to the energy minister, the need to build a nuclear power plant is “clear”. According to TASS Myrzagaliev explained that “We have to understand that the construction of any plant, especially a nuclear power plant, is not a quick matter. On average, it takes up to 10 years”.

The government is currently in discussions with Russia’s Rosatom, which has built plants in China, India, and Belarus. Kazakhstan’s goal of becoming carbon-neutral by 2060 would be aided by construction. Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed a law earlier this year requiring cryptocurrency miners to pay higher electricity fees. Any crypto mining operation will incur a surcharge of one Kazakhstani tenge ($0.0023) per kilowatt-hour.

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Chaahat Girdhar

I'm Chaahat Girdhar, a journalist by profession who's turning her dreams into vision and vision into reality. I'm curious and have an appetite for gaining new knowledge. So I'm looking forward to learning things in the better way possible.