The new Bitfury development at the top of the North Hill in Starland County is a crucial component in creating what is believed to be North America’s largest bitcoin mining data centre.
In December, Hut 8 Mining Corp announced it was partnering with Bitfury group to create the data centres.
Economic Development officer for the Town of Drumheller, Julia Fielding, is excited by the development.
“It is pretty cool, this is enormous,” she said.
“We have people from Drumheller working there and I think what we have to do as a town is see what other opportunities we can use to build on this.”
Bitfury is a world leader in this technology and will provide Hut 8 a bitcoin mining solution that includes a proprietary mix of hardware software, installation and operation services, according to a press release. Bitfury is the largest bitcoin miner outside of China and holds about 11 per cent of the technology’s market share.
“This partnership signifies the growing demand for access to Bitcoin investment opportunities across North America,” said Sean Clark, CEO of Hut 8.
“Bitfury’s market share, unmatched computing power, and ability to scale, in combination with a Board of Directors that former hedge fund manager Michael Novogratz and renowned venture capitalist Bill Tai have both agreed to serve on, offers Hut 8 an extreme advantage in a competitive marketplace.”
With this partnership Hut 8 will own and operated the cryptocurrency Mining farm.
One of the major components for the Bitfury installation is a readily available affordable source of power. Right now Alberta offers this. However, with simple sea-can construction, they are mobile and able to chase low utility rates.
“The price of electricity is so important to them, “ said Fielding. “This is when the government needs to come in and see what we can do to help these people out.”
She has discussed the issue with Invest Alberta, and they are aware of the situation.
She adds that private energy providers are seeing this as an opportunity. The Bitfury installation is located close to a place to tie into the grid, and recently Aura Power held an open house for a solar installation in close proximity to the Bitfury installation.
“There are people around that see the opportunity,” she said. “A lot of oil and gas companies are thinking of using their excess power.”