Just a few days after a corresponding ban, the government in the country is cracking down on the crypto miners in the country who have not yet taken their devices off the network. On January 8th alone, it confiscated more than 300 mining computers. From a Message from the Kosovar police It emerges that it confiscated 272 “Antminer” bitcoin machines in the Leposavic municipality and another 39 mining machines near Prishtina. The police also stopped a driver who was driving six mining rigs with 42 graphics cards (GPUs). After questioning, he is again at large.
The Minister of Economic Affairs Artane Rizvanolli tweeted her praise for the police. The security would save tens of thousands of euros per month in taxpayers’ money. The energy will now benefit hundreds of Kosovar families during the crisis. Rizvanolli had already announced at the beginning of the year that it would take extreme action against Bitcoin miners. Because energy is a rare commodity in Kosovo.
Kosovo is in the middle of a severe energy crisis
In December, a 60-day catastrophe was declared. 90 percent of the country’s energy comes from lignite-fired power plants, the most important of which, however, has failed due to the temperature. According to official figures, Kosovo has the fifth largest lignite reserves in the world (12-14 billion tons). Now Kosovo is forced to cover around 40 percent of its energy needs with imports.
Bitcoin miners are trying to take advantage of a peculiarity in Kosovo. Until recently, electricity was practically free in the former Serbian communities in the north of the country since the end of the Kosovo war in 1999. An anonymous miner who owns 40 graphics processing units (GPUs) said to Reuters, he pays around 170 EUR per month for electricity and earns around 2,400 EUR per month in profit from mining.
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Energy crisis leads to crackdown on Bitcoin miners