Paraguay Torn Between Utilizing Excess Power In Mining, Manufacturing Industries

The country is not sure about deploying its electrical power for mining or fighting poverty.


Can Mining End Paraguay’s Poverty?

The largest hydropower producing plant in the world,  Itaipú dam in Paraguay is churning out excess electricity. With the overproduction, Paraguay is now in a dilemma regarding the utilization of the power. The country is torn between using the electricity in mining cryptocurrencies or assisting the poor.

Reports by The Guardian indicates that the power is being used in mining Bitcoin and Ethereum. The dam lies on the border of Brazil and Paraguay. The country’s crypto mining sector is booming with entities and individuals making profit from the business. Profit is coming in through renting rigs. However, a section believes that the power used in mining can be deployed in other sectors.

Many want the power to be used in alleviating poverty. World Bank figures indicate that the country has among the highest with inequality among residents. It is now clear if the electrical capacity will be withdrawn from the mining sector or not. According to Gregorio Barreiro, a businessman, mining is enriching a number of people in the country.

Bareiro is an active player in the mining business. He has a business where he rents computers and an air conditioned space to miners . Bareiro joined the crypto sector when he was setting up ad hoc cooling units for rigs. In his rental facility, he employs 12 people, while renting out about 750 computers.

The excess power generated by Itapú’s cannot be accommodated in the national grid.The country has therefore resolved to sell it to Brazil. The initiative has contributed to lowering the cost of electricity in the country. The affordable power rates have attracted firms like AWS mining. The company specializes in setting up farms in regions with cheap energy prices.

According to Barreiro, the crypto industry might be the answer to Paraguay’s poverty situation. He believes that the sector might generate sufficient revenue to alleviate the country’s external debt within a decade.

Mining businesses want to use the extra power and channel it towards establishing additional mining infrastructure. However, conflicting opinions have emerged with others calling for using the power in manufacturing industries. The group is led by politicians and scholars among other leaders.

This lot opines that use of power in manufacturing will boost the country’s GDP since it has the potential of generating about two million jobs. However, the crypto mining sector is gaining momentum with numerous businesses springing up.

1 year ago

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