From coal to crypto: Mining in Appalachia

Just Transition

31-10-2022 • 20 mins

Eastern Kentucky is a region that can’t leave mining behind.  It has long been coal country, but mining jobs have dried up as the world weans itself off coal.  As old mines close, new miners are moving in, working the digital terrain for a prize you cannot see: cryptocurrency.  Our correspondent Avi Asher-Schapiro takes us to Appalachia where cheap land, tax breaks and a well-developed energy grid make for perfect bitcoin mining conditions. But this new economy is not likely to create many new jobs or reduce Kentucky’s carbon footprint.  Banks of powerful servers run day and night, consuming huge amounts of electricity – in this case, electricity from coal and natural gas.  Outside investors and some local players stand to get rich.  But the thousands of former coal miners are not at the table. Read the full story on Context here: https://bit.ly/3NocVcn Sign up for our newsletter, Climate. Change. for more analysis on the climate crisis - directly from the ground at: https://bit.ly/3T1oDvn

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