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Blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and insider stories by TNW.

Iran seizes 1,000 Bitcoin miners, says mining with state electricity is a no-no

Cryptocurrency is still banned by central bank

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Authorities in Iran have seized around 1,000 Bitcoin BTC mining machines from two abandoned factories, according to Reuters.

The report hasn’t stated what cryptocurrency was being mined, or for how long the farm had been operating. It’s also unclear why, or for how long the farms were abandoned.

“Two of these Bitcoin farms have been identified, with a consumption of one megawatt,” Arash Navab, a power official in the central province of Yazd, told state television.

The news comes just days after local media reported that Irananian officials were blaming the country’s recent increase in energy consumption on cryptocurrency mining. The country witnessed a seven percent increase in energy consumption in the month ending June 21.

In September 2018, Iran‘s Supreme Council of Cyberspace was shaping up to recognize cryptocurrency mining as a legitimate industry, however, the country is still operating under nationwide ban on the digital assets.

In April 2018, Iran‘s central bank prohibited other banks from dealing with cryptocurrencies over fears of money laundering.

An Iranian energy official recently said that using the country’s national grid to power cryptocurrency mining machines is illegal. So, it seems to be a bit of a grey area at the moment.

That said, some in Iran still believe cryptocurrency could be a solution to help mitigate international sanctions placed on the country.

A group of designers from Iran recently submitted plans for a cryptocurrency mining skyscraper water park to an international architecture prize. Interestingly, their plans use hydro electric to power Bitcoin miners to keep them entirely off the national grid.

Published June 28, 2019 — 08:41 UTC