North American Bitcoin miners want to be the dominant hash rate player, with China out of the picture.
Before China banned crypto mining, Bitcoin ( BTC ) miners in North America were increasing their capacities to increase their share of the global hash rate distribution. These institutions have made concerted efforts to equalize the hash-power disparity between the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, from building larger data centers to purchasing hardware inventories.
North American Bitcoin miners have to deal with energy consumption concerns. Some have been eager to work with oil and gas companies, becoming buyers last resort for flared gasoline. American oil drillers continue to work with Bitcoin mining companies to maximize natural gas utilization. This proves that Bitcoin’s potential thermodynamic capabilities are a net benefit for the environment, despite criticisms of proof-of-work (PoW).
Here’s a look at the four largest Bitcoin miners from North America, as they are poised to establish a stronger presence in the global Bitcoin mining network.
According to several data sources, China held about 65% of global Bitcoin hash rates in 2020. Riot Blockchain was expanding its operations through a series of hardware acquisitions by leading Bitcoin miners like Bitmain.
Riot Blockchain spent millions to purchase thousands of Antminers from Bitmain in August and December 2020. According to Cointelegraph, Riot Blockchain’s hashing capacity grew by 460% in 2020 , as reported in April by Cointelegraph.
Riot Blockchain’s expansion of inventory has continued into 2021. The company purchased over 42,000 Antminers earlier in the year from Bitmain. A $650,000,000 purchase by a Texas-based data center was also announced by the Nasdaq-listed company.
Riot Blockchain has acquired the Whinstone Texas data center. This will make Riot Blockchain the largest Bitcoin mining facility within the United States. Riot Blockchain, an American Bitcoin mining company, is planning to increase the original site’s capacity from 750 megawatts up to more than 1,000 MW.
Riot Blockchain’s increased capacity coincides with China’s sweeping crackdowns. This is why it is not surprising to see Riot Blockchain enjoy greater Bitcoin mining success. As shown by the numbers in its monthly production update and operations update, The company reported in April that it had mined 187 Bitcoin, which is worth $11.2 million.
The March 2021 BTC production mark an 80% rise from the March 2020 Bitcoin mining total. The company reported in June that it had mined 243 BTC. This is a 406% increase over its June 2020 production.
Riot Blockchain’s total year-to date Bitcoin mining was also reported in June. It currently stands at $1167 BTC, or $36.5 million. The company had mined only 508 BTC as of June 2020. This is a 130% increase year-over-year.
Riot Blockchain claims it has over 2,200 BTC at the end of June. All of this Bitcoin comes from its mining operations. The June report outlined the connection between recent production successes and China’s situation. It stated that “The exodus from Bitcoin mining from China has resulted a lower difficulty adjustment and lower global networks hash rate.” Riot currently mines more Bitcoin per day that any other time in Company history.”
The company believes that while it is widely expected that many Chinese miners will relocate, it could take some time before global Bitcoin mining hash rates return to their previous high of 180 exahash/second (“EH/s”) which was last observed earlier in the year.
Marathon is Riot Blockchain’s primary competitor in the “North American haveh wars”. The crypto mining giant has been growing its hardware inventory ever since 2020, just like its rival. The Nevada-based Marathon Patent Group purchased 10,000 Antminer S-19 PROs from Bitmain in October.
The order was so large that it was expected to increase the company’s operational haveh rate capacity by 2.56 EH/s. This is slightly more than the target of 2.3 EH/s to support Riot Blockchain’s expansion. The Antminer order arrived in Marathon batches, so the company is now focusing on “carbon neutrality” as well as satisfying regulatory requirements.
The company announced its plans to shift all of its hash power to a Bitcoin mining pool that is compliant with regulatory requirements by March. Marathon claimed that the pool adhered to U.S. Anti-Money Laundering protocols, as established by America’s Office of Foreign Control.
Cointelegraph reported that Marathon plans to build a 300MW carbon-neutral data centre, which will be home to 73,000 Bitcoin miners. The announcement made at the time stated that the facility would increase the company’s carbon neutrality by 70% and raise its hash rate to 10.37EH/s.
According to data, Marathon would be number five in the current Bitcoin hashrate distribution log if it achieved a hashrate capacity of 10.37 EH/s.
Although the stock price is now more than half off its 2021 peak of $56.56, it still stands at 122.34% year to date as of this writing. Bitcoin mining stocks are the best option for indirect exposure to BTC, as Bitcoin exchange-traded funds have yet to be approved in the United States.
Marathon is a Bitcoin holder, apart from its mining interests. purchased over 4,800 BTC at the beginning of the year. It was valued at around $150 million at that time. The deal was reportedly made possible by the New York Digital Investment Group.
The United States-based companies aren’t the only ones involved in the North American bitcoin mining scene. Hut 8, a Canadian company, is also an important player. The Toronto-based company was once the largest publicly traded Bitcoin miner by capacity back at 2018, and seems to be regaining its former glory.
The 2018 crypto market experienced a severe bear market. Coin prices plummeted from their January 2017 peak. Hut 8 suffered losses of over $136 million in May 2019. This led to significant staff reductions.
After enduring the crypto winter 2018-2019, Hut 8 announced the purchase of more than 11,000 MicroBT mining rigs worth approximately $44 million. Based on the MicroBT miner capacity, Hut 8’s hashrate capacity will reach 2.5 EH/s when all machines have been installed in the 100 MW facility currently under construction.
Hut 8 predicts that its daily Bitcoin production will increase by twofold at 2.5 EH/s from between 6.5 and 7.5 BTCto 14 to 16 BTC. This per-diem BTC mining rate could also help Hut 8 maintain its status as the Bitcoin miner with the highest self-mined BTC.
In January, the Canadian Bitcoin miner predicted that its Bitcoin holdings would reach 5,000 BTC before the year 2022. In addition, the company announced plans to increase its hash rate by six EH/s by the middle of 2022.
Blockchain at Hive
The East-West shift of Bitcoin hashrate will eventually lead to major changes in the energy mix for BTC miners, with more emphasis on “Green Bitcoin.”
Hive Blockchain ran green-energy-powered data centres for crypto mining from Canada, Iceland, and even Sweden. The company was forced to close its Norway facility in May due to issues with the Norwegian regulators.
Hive purchased 3,000 MicroBT-M30S miners earlier in July for its New Brunswick facility. According to reports, the Foundry USA Pool will benefit from the additional hash power. It already aggregates hashing potentiaries from major North American miners such as Blockcap, Hut 8, and Bitfarms.
Hive’s additional 3000 mining rigs will increase the company’s potential hashing rate by 0.264 EH/s, to 0.83 EH/s. After ‘s June Nasdaq listing, Hive joined the ranks publicly traded Bitcoin mining companies.
Gryphon Digital Mining, a U.S.-based miner may be challenging more established players in the North American BTC mining market. The company claims it runs on 100% renewable energy and recently bought 7,200 Antminer S19JPro mining rigs.
Gryphon’s willh rate will increase by 0.72 EH/s based on the machines’ hashing capacities. The company will be able to install the new inventory in August, and will then receive its ESG rating.