Another province in China attacks Bitcoin mining

Charlie Taylor

Anhui is the sixth province in China to crack down on Bitcoin mining, according to local news. Similar language was used last month when Ya’an, a large city in Sichuan province, also banned Bitcoin mining. Anhui, however, cited lack of energy as the main factor behind the latest ban. Iran also banned Bitcoin mining in May as the country battled summer blackouts accentuated by power shortages. This ban will be lifted in September. The same cannot be said for the crackdown in Anhui, however. That ban in Anhui will likely be permanent, given a broad government announcement in May. At that time, China's State Council included Bitcoin mining among a long list of financial risks it intended to monitor closely. The mandate spawned a series of mining bans in many other provinces, including Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang, Qinghai, Yunnan and Ya’an City in Sichuan. Many of the provinces have been hotspots for Bitcoin mining due to the abundance of energy, whether hydroelectric or fossil. However, there is a slight difference between the ban in Anhui and those in the five other provinces. Reports of the initial bans revolved around maintaining China's image as an environmentally friendly country. Bitcoin mining, famous for its large carbon footprint – specifically in coal-rich provinces like Inner Mongolia – conflicts with that image. Instead, Anhui is suppressing activity due to lack of energy. This reason was much less prominent in previous bans in other provinces. In addition, the Anhui ban appears to have been prompted by a warning from the State Grid Corporation of China, according to Chinese journalist Colin Wu. State Grid is China's national electricity supplier and one of the largest in the world. According to Wu, State Grid has joined the State Council to “call for the shutdown of virtual currency mining” across the country. He added that after Anhui, Henan and Gansu provinces will also ban mining. *Translated and republished with permission from Decrypt.co

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