How Much Electricity Is Spent On Cryptocurrency Mining In Georgia?
Georgian National and Water Supply Regulatory Commission (GNERC) reports, that 690 million kilowatt hours of electricity were spent on cryptocurrency mining in Georgia in 2021.
According to the Commission, GNERC is not aware of the amount of electricity spent on cryptocurrency mining on the occupied territories, so the provided data reflects the electricity output (690 million kilowatt hours) in the rest of Georgia. In 2021, the controlled part of the country consumed 10.8 billion kilowatt hours, so the share of mining in total consumption was 6.4%.
Commercial mining is becoming more difficult in the world and Georgia is no exception, which is complicated by the electricity cost increase in the country. Large data centers are registered as "direct purchasers of electricity" to buy relatively affordable electricity.
BFDC Georgia or Bitfury bought the most electricity among the mining companies in 2020. According to ESCO, the data center consumed a total of 434 million kilowatt hours of electricity. Mining company "Geomaintenance" consumed 70.6 million kilowatt hours, while IT Lab - 58 million kilowatt hours, and the consumption of "Data Hub" made up 26 million kilowatt hours.
Home-based mining is the most common in Mestia district, where citizens do not pay electricity bills, so the underground mining is a significant problem in the region.
As for the situation in Abkhazia, electricity consumption in the region has been growing rapidly in recent years due to uncontrolled mining. In 2021, the region's total consumption was 2.96 billion kilowatt hours, which is 16% more than in 2020. Abkhazia's electricity consumption exceeds that of Tbilisi, which has consumed 2.57 billion kWh of electricity in 2021. The main source of electricity supply in Abkhazia is Enguri HPP, from which the region receives free electricity.
In 2018, electricity consumption in Abkhazia was 54% lower. Consequently, cryptocurrency mining is the main factor in electricity demand increase in the region in the recent years.