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Economist Forecasts Montana as Bitcoin Mining Haven

An article written by Brandon Bridge, an economist, and director of forecasting at the Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the University of Montana, has suggested that the state is ripe for Bitcoin mining to boost its economy, according to Big Sky Business Journal.

According to the Montana Business Quarterly, three companies have recently invested or are planning to invest in building data centers in the state:

“There’s a huge potential for locations and jurisdictions around the world that are favorable to the Bitcoin industry – most notably right here in Montana,” writes Bridge, in view of Montana’s relatively low energy rates, a cold climate and lots of unused warehouse space.

Some industry publications cite these exact same reasons as to why mining should be adopted in the state, remarking how the shutdown of lumber mills, falling foul of the US economic downturn, could well provide an environment for mining, particularly given such infrastructure’s large amount of power already being on site.

Recent grants to a local firm of USD 416,000 by Montana Governor Steve Bullock to help it to operate its business in Bonner demonstrates that there could be funds made available for new productive projects which support the Montana economy. This along with state legislature lowering taxes for large data centers could provide a bona fide drive to companies looking for mining locations.

Project Spokane, the company receiving the recent state grant, is said to be the first of its kind in Montana, and the state is the first to receive public funds to entice Bitcoin business to the region. State officials have previously been inspired by their observations of Bitcoin servers operating in two other northwest states, Washington and Oregon.

In terms of power consumption, one analysis estimated mid-2017 weekly Bitcoin transactions totaling 302,150 consuming the same power as 268,990 average homes, although other reports suggest this figure doubles every six months.

Big Sky Business Journal points out that Bridge suggests that the media became most interested in cryptocurrency mining last year when it rocketed from USD 750 in January 2017 to nearly USD 20,000 in December the same year. “…no one seems to agree on what it is if it is interesting and whether or not it is just a passing fad,” said Bridges.

 

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