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Canadian energy regulator announces favorable rules for crypto mining

Mon, 06 May 2019, 06:30 am UTC

The Régie de l’énergie, the energy sector regulator of Quebec, Canada, has announced new rules that will support blockchain innovation in the region.

In a press release dated April 29, Hydro-Québec, a public utility that manages the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity in Quebec, said that the regulator has allocated an additional 300-MW block of electricity to the blockchain industry.

“This 300 MW will be in addition to the 158 MW already granted to existing customers approved by Hydro-Québec, and to the 210 MW granted to existing customers approved by municipal distributors. The result is a total of 668 MW of electricity for the blockchain industry,” it said.

Hydro-Québec said that the new rules will enable it to provide power to the new customers without any negative impacts on its capacity balance. It will also be able to “protect the low rates [it] offer[s] [its] customers,” it added.

To receive this newly allocation power, companies would have to go through a selection process which will take into account various factors such as the number of direct jobs created in Quebec, total payroll of direct jobs, investments, and heat recovery. The selection process will be launched in the coming weeks, Hydro-Québec said.

Cointelegraph reported that Hydro-Québec proposed new rules to the regulator in June 2018 focused on the sale of electricity to blockchain companies.

Blockchain infrastructure company Bitfarms said that it was an active participant in the hearings held during the summer and fall of 2018 at the Energy Board. Pierre-Luc Quimper, President and co-founder of Bitfarms welcomed the new rules saying:

“This decision helps to secure our long-term operations in Québec as we enter a new era of operational growth. We are excited to continue our collaboration with Hydro-Québec, municipal energy distributors and municipalities. With green hydroelectricity, innovative universities and a recent court decision that clearly supports the industry, Québec has all the ingredients to become a blockchain hub.”

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