When computers “mine” bitcoin, a lot of heat is produced. This is because the machines are constantly solving cryptographic puzzles and, as a result, are consuming an abundance of energy. If nothing is done with the byproduct (heat), the process can be incredibly wasteful.
Because cryptocurrencies are the future, some people — such as Bruce Hardy — have developed ways to repurpose the heat which is generated from bitcoin mining. As a result, he can reduce the environmental impact of mining the cryptocurrency. Hardy has accomplished this by using the heat exuded by 30 computers to warm nearby plants in a make-shift greenhouse.
Lettuce, basil, and barely are just a few crops grown in the 20,000-square-foot building, located in the Rural Municipality of St. Francois Xavier, in Winnipeg, Canada. CBC News reports: “A pump waters the plants with waste water from tanks located on the first floor in which around 800 Arctic Char swim and breed. The waste water from the tanks is rich in nitrates, a great fertilizer for the plants upstairs.”
Hardy, who is the president of Myera Group, loves the intricacy and interconnectedness of the operation. “It’s all connected, much like Earth,” he said.
One of the Myera Group’s main objectives is to use technology to create sustainable food systems. The idea was spurred less than two years ago when Hardy began mining bitcoin. Initially, the entrepreneur paid for air conditioning to cool off the computers. However, he later realized there is a better use for the heat. “When bitcoin came, they were an excellent proxy for what a server could do in terms of emulating heat, and whether we could use that heat for agricultural purposes,” said Hardy.
Just one year ago, Hardy opened his operation in a former museum and convent, west of Winnipeg. The company is still experimenting with using the heat from bitcoin mining to cultivate crops. According to CBC News, about one-fourth of the second floor is filled with computers and plants. Eventually, the entire building will be filled.
The rise of Bitcoin helped fund the operation. Said Hardy, “The revenue from those bitcoins has helped me to keep staff on, it’s helped me create these displays so we can show people what we’re doing in agriculture innovation.” In the future, the building will exist as a place where people can research and develop sustainable food systems. They will work side-by-side with programmers who are devoted to enhancing bitcoin technology.
What are your thoughts? Please comment below and upvote this article!
Source: CBS News
Images Credit: (Lyzaville Sale/CBC News)