Residents Concerned as Power Plant Plans to Burn Tires for Cryptocurrency Mining
Residents of Carbon County, Pennsylvania, were shocked to learn that the local Panther Creek Power Plant plans to burn tires to fuel its on-site cryptocurrency mining operation. The power plant, which was acquired by Stronghold Digital Mining Inc. in 2021, has already received several violations related to unpermitted air pollution. The plant currently transports coal waste from various sites and uses it to generate electricity for crypto mining. However, the company now wants to add waste tires to its fuel mix.
Concerns about Health Hazards
Tire-derived fuel (TDF), a byproduct of burning tires, is used as energy in turbines to generate electricity for the cryptocurrency mining farm. Stronghold Digital Mining has submitted a permit proposal to the state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) seeking approval to use up to 15% of tires in its fuel mix. However, neighboring residents and environmental organizations have expressed concerns about the health hazards associated with burning tires.
- Burning tires release harmful air pollutants such as polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
- These pollutants are known to be carcinogens and can have serious health consequences.
- Open tire fires also emit particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, and nitrogen oxides, which are harmful to both human health and the environment.
Proper disposal of waste tires has long been an environmental concern. Burning, burying, and grinding tires all have their own ramifications. The emissions from tire burning are shown to be extremely toxic to human health and mutagenic, meaning they can cause genetic mutations in the long run.
Call for Sustainable Solutions
Residents and environmental groups are urging the DEP to reject the power plant’s proposal and find a more sustainable way to power cryptocurrency mining operations. They argue that crypto mining is already energy-intensive, and finding greener energy sources is crucial to mitigate its environmental impact.
- Renewable energy makes up only 39% of miners’ total energy consumption.
- There is a growing call for transparency and the decarbonization of the crypto industry.
- Lawmakers have introduced a bill that would require crypto miners to report greenhouse gas emissions, signaling a push toward greener mining practices.
In conclusion, the plan to burn tires for cryptocurrency mining has raised significant environmental concerns. The emissions from burning tires pose health risks and contribute to air pollution. There is a growing need for greener energy sources in the crypto mining industry to reduce its environmental impact and promote sustainability.
- Getty Images
- Clean Air Council
- Rubber Manufacturers Association