Police in Iran have reportedly seized 7,000 block reward mining machines at an illegal mining farm. The police have been cracking down on the miners, who are cited as the reason behind recent power outages in the Middle Eastern country. This is the largest haul of mining machines in Iran and comes at a time when the country has implemented a temporary ban on the miners due to low power supply.
Iran’s profile as a digital currency block reward mining hub has continued to grow, with the country attracting miners due to its low power rates. However, this relationship turned soar this year after the country started to experience frequent power outages. As CoinGeek reported in May, President Hassan Rouhani announced that the ban would last until at least September 22. Rouhani said illegal miners in the country consume more than six times more energy than the legal miners.
And now, according to a Reuters report, police in the capital Tehran have seized the 7,000 miners from an “an abandoned factory in the west of the capital.” Citing the state news agency IRNA, the report did not mention if arrests were made during the raid.
Iran’s temporary ban on block reward miners comes at a time when China is stamping out its miners. The Asian giant has blamed these miners for its carbon footprint, which in recent years has become the source of global concern. In 2019, China contributed 27% to global emissions, almost three times that of the U.S. at second place. More significantly, this was more than all developing countries combined. The Chinese government has committed to rectifying this, and the miners were among the industries it’s out to curb.
In the past, Iran has become a natural destination for miners fleeing China, along with other countries like Kazakhstan. However, with Iran asking the miners to hold off for now, Chinese miners have had to find other regions to relocate to.
At its height, the Iranian block reward mining industry had become one of the most significant globally. According to Elliptic, a British blockchain analytics firm, Iran was generating $1 billion a year from block reward mining. At the time, the energy being used by the miners would require the equivalent of 10 million barrels of crude oil annually to generate, which is around 4% of the total Iranian oil exports last year.
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