Quebec energy manager seeks government approval to shut down power to cryptocurrency miners

Hydro-Québec, the company that manages electricity in the Canadian province of Quebec, plans to reallocate the energy supplied to cryptocurrency companies.

According to a November 3 tweet from Canadian lawmaker Pierre Fitzgibbon, the government will do so request an energy council decree to release the company from its obligation to feed cryptocurrency miners in the province. Hydro-Québec has earmarked 270 megawatts for mining companies, but demand for electricity in Québec is expected to grow to the point that powering cryptocurrencies will put pressure on the energy provider.

The report that Hydro-Québec filed with the government’s energy board on November 1 states that temporarily reducing the energy supplied to mining companies could help prevent threats to the “reliability and safety” of the company. energy for Québec residents. The distributor reported taking into account the demand for electricity from green hydrogen, cryptocurrencies and greenhouse crops.

“The additional energy requirement in winter is high, and this without adding the load related to the block balance reserved for cryptographic use applied to blockchains,” said Hydro-Québec. “Energy purchases of almost 3 are expected [terawatt-hours] in winter from 2025 and even exceeding 3 TWh in 2027 “.

As part of the energy manager’s plan for 2023-2032, cryptocurrency companies were expected to grow by 0.7 TWh, reaching their maximum energy demand in 2028. Cryptocurrency miners in Québec were subject to additional fees since March 2021 and have also given the province options to scale their operations in order to reduce the load on the electricity grid.

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Energy consumption is one of the many factors that cryptocurrency companies value when opening a store, which has contributed to more than one US state considering corporate tax breaks. The adoption of cryptocurrencies also appears to be growing across Canada, according to the Ontario Securities Commission. OSC CEO Grant Vingoe said in October that “more than 30% of Canadians plan to buy cryptocurrencies in the next year”.