Bitcoin enthusiasts, miners and oil and gas executives gathered at a meetup in Houston to discuss the future of Bitcoin mining.
Houston – A 150,000-square-foot warehouse on the backstreets of a residential neighborhood in Houston, where 200 oil and gas executives and Bitcoin miners mix, drink beer, and August I spoke at the store last Wednesday night.
These two groups of people may appear to be on the other side of the professional and social spectrum, but their worlds are rapidly clashing. After all, the industry is making compatible companions.
Take Hayden Griffin Haby III, who turned from Oilman to Bitcoiner. Originally from Texas, the three fathers spent 14 years on oil and gas. He symbolizes what this monthly social gathering is.
Hubby began as a surface landowner who brokered land contracts and later ran his own oil company. But for the past nine months, he has only mined Bitcoin.
As Hubby explains, he was the “Orange Pill” in November 2020-to explain the process of convincing fiat money people that they are missing by not investing in Bitcoin. Term used for. A month later, he co-founded Limpia Creek Technologies. It powers Bitcoin mining rigs with flared, vented, and stranded natural gas assets.
“When I hear that Bitcoin mining allows me to make this much money for each MCF (an indicator used to measure natural gas) instead of burning it into the atmosphere, I look away. “I couldn’t.” Hubby said, “You can’t see it.”
When China kicked out all crypto miners this spring-an escape that Hubby calls “Chexit” -it poured kerosene into the flames. “This is an opportunity we didn’t expect to come,” he said.
Hubby is aware to CNBC that demand for Texas is already skyrocketing, and the state is ready to win most of China’s hash rates looking for new homes on the more friendly coast. I’m sure it’s done.
Bitcoin miners are most interested in finding cheap power sources, so Texas with crypto-friendly politicians, deregulated power grids, and decisively abundant cheap power sources Fits virtually perfectly. The union becomes even more harmonious when miners connect the rig to energy left behind in other ways. For example, natural gas is wasted in oil fields throughout Texas.
“This is Texas, boy. We got what you needed, so come down,” Hubby said. “We are sitting in the world’s energy capital.”
“I think Kevin Costner said it best:’If you build it, they will come,’” Hubby said.
An underground rally of Bitcoin miners and oil and gas executives was held in a 150,000-square-foot warehouse protecting luxury vintage cars.
Parker Lewis is one of Texas’s de facto Bitcoin ambassadors. Everyone knows him. Everyone likes him. And virtually every Bitcoiner you ask calls him the future mayor of Austin.
Lewis is an executive at Unchained Capital, a Bitcoin-native financial services company. He’s not in politics yet, but he’s rushing across Texas to spread the word about the world’s largest cryptocurrency. The May Houston Bitcoin Meetup consisted of only 20 people in the office fluorescent conference room. Then Lewis decided to join.
“I knew that Houston was the perfect place to explode because of its energy connection to the mining industry. “We had a good exchange, which is also the key to Texas being the capital of Bitcoin in the world,” Lewis told CNBC.
His efforts have been rewarded. The meetup on Wednesday attracted more than 200 participants from across Texas, California, Colorado, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, New York, Australia and the United Kingdom.
The topic was electrical on Wednesday night. You had to scream to be heard. And no one in the room mentioned cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin. There was unmistakable stealth air, and FOMO. The people who attended this event did so, at least in part, because they didn’t want to be left behind.
Recovering excess or wasted natural gas from drilling sites and using that energy to mine Bitcoin remains avant-garde technology.
A friendly and open book about most things, Hubby is clams when it comes to sharing the location of his company’s mining site. “West Texas” is as much as Hubby gives to CNBC, but if the name “Limpia Creek” is any sign, it’s located 100 miles north of Big Bend National Park.
His secret was the same as that night’s course.
The oil company turned to Bitcoin miners at one of Texas’s Bitcoin mining sites, welcoming Griffin Hubby, Connor Murfrey and Jordan Kunz.
Bitcoin minor Alejandro de la Torre was born in Spain, but he has spent years casting bitcoins around the world, and more recently in China. When Beijing cracked down on all cryptocurrencies, De La Torre received a call from his boss at 3 am and said he had to go to Texas. He was in Austin the next day.
Since then, he has shipped a large number of new generation mining gear to the United States.
“It’s all through the ship and from the Pacific side,” Delatore told CNBC. “The port depends on where the rig is finally placed.”
It was as much as Delatore revealed. Because, as he explains, details about the destination and the gear itself can give competitors an edge.
Bitcoin followers, like oil and gas people, care a lot about privacy. Some people cited nondisclosure agreements as a reason to talk to CNBC in a vague manner about commerce. Others were willing to share their thoughts on an anonymous basis. And some attendees were worried about the safety of their work if their employer knew they were there.
These weren’t big names-they were mostly up-and-coming young executives, hungry to bet on Bitcoin mining and move on and name.
Oil and gas meet Bitcoin
Oil and gas companies have long struggled with the question of what to do if they accidentally hit a natural gas layer while drilling oil. Oil can be easily trucked to remote areas, but gas supplies require pipelines.
If the drilling site is right next to the pipeline, they inhale the gas and receive cash that the other buyer is willing to pay for the day. “There is no choice. There is no middle finger. You have to sell all the gas that comes out that day,” Haby explained.
But 20 miles away from the pipeline, things start to get more complicated.
Gas wells are often not large enough to justify the time and cost of building an entirely new pipeline. If an excavator can’t quickly find a way to sell a natural gas stash, most people consider disposing of it on-site.
One method is a vent that releases methane directly into the air. The greenhouse effect has been shown to be much stronger than carbon dioxide, making it an unsuitable choice for the environment. A more environmentally friendly option is to flare it. This means actually igniting the gas.
“Chemistry is great,” explained Adam Ortolf, who heads the US business development of Upstream Data, a company that manufactures and supplies portable mining solutions for oil and gas facilities.
“When CH4, or methane, burns, the only exhausts are CO2 and H2O vapor, which is literally the same thing that comes out of my mouth when I exhale,” continued Ortolf.
However, Ortolf points out that flare efficiency is only 75-90%. “Even with flares, some of the methane is released without burning,” he said.
This is when onsite Bitcoin mining can prove to be particularly influential.
According to Ortolf, when methane flows into an engine or generator, 100% of the methane burns and is not leaked or released into the air.
“But generators are expensive to get and maintain, so no one will pass them through unless you can make money,” he said. “Therefore, producers do not burn gas internally unless it is economically sustainable.”
A panel of Bitcoin miners and oil and gas executives share what it’s like to mine Bitcoin in Texas.
Bitcoin makes it economically sustainable for oil and gas companies to burn methane instead of burning it with flares from the outside.
“There is no such thing as stranded gas anymore,” Haby said.
But Ortolf took years to convince people that parking trailers full of ASICs in oil and gas fields was a wise and economically sound idea.
“In 2018, when I talked about mining Bitcoin with flare gas, I was laughed at from the room,” Ortolf said. “I laughed at the concept of bringing hydrocarbons to market without counterparties.”
Fast-forwarding three years, the upstream business is booming, a company founded by lead engineer Steve Barber. It currently works at 140 Bitcoin mines throughout North America.
“This is the best gift the oil and gas industry has ever received,” Ortolf said. “They left a lot of hydrocarbons on the table, but now they are no longer restricted by geography to sell energy.”
It also helps reduce the overall carbon dioxide emissions of some of these oil and gas sites. According to recent production statistics, about 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas is wasted every day in the United States alone. And since these are just the reported numbers, the actual numbers will probably be higher.
Bitcoin miners, on the other hand, get what they want most: cheap electricity.
Vote for people you don’t like
About all these grand visions of Bitcoin mining – To maintain the course, Capitol Hill needs some human resources to protect its plans to scale up. And now, Washington politicians are struggling to understand what and how to regulate cryptocurrencies and all ancillary services that make up the broader ecosystem of digital currencies.
So another big topic at the Houston Bitcoin Conference was political activity.
“Who knows the staff and representatives?” One of the crowd posed for the group. At least half a dozen people raised their hands and confirmed that one stepped up and contacted Senator Cruz’s office contacts.
There was momentum in the audience. Some have pointed out that Bitcoin delegations across the country have paralyzed the $ 1 trillion rubber stamp bipartisan bill. This…