In this photo taken on Jan. 18, 2018, large clouds of steam rise into the sky from the Svartsengi geothermal power station in GrindavÃk, Iceland. With massive amounts of energy needed to obtain bitcoins, large cryptocurrency mining companies have established a base in Iceland, a cold North Atlantic island with an abundance of renewable energy from geothermal and hydroelectric power plants. (AP Photos/Egill Bjarnason)

Iceland is expected to use more energy mining bitcoin than powering its homes this year.
Large virtual currency mining companies have established a base on the island, which has an abundance of geothermal and hydroelectric power plants.
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And with massive amounts of energy needed to run the computers that create bitcoins, it is seen as an ideal base.
Johann Snorri Sigurbergsson, business development manager at the energy company Hitaveita Sudurnesja, said he expected Iceland’s virtual currency mining to double its energy consumption to around 100 megawatts this year.
That is more than households use on the island nation of 340,000, according to Iceland’s National Energy Authority.
‘Four months ago, I could not have predicted this trend – but then bitcoin skyrocketed and we got a lot more emails,’ he said at the Svartsengi geothermal energy plant, which powers the southwestern peninsula …
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