Russia is considering introducing special energy tariffs for cryptocurrency miners amid a wave of migration following China’s recent sweeping industry ban, CoinTelegraph reported.
Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov said on Wednesday that he was looking for ways to differentiate energy consumption for mining cryptocurrencies.
“We cannot allow miners to capitalize on the situation at the expense of lower household electricity tariffs,” he said, according to CoinTelegraph, who quoted local news agency RBC as saying. “In order to maintain the reliability and quality of the electricity supply, we believe it is necessary to prohibit miners from consuming electricity at household rates.”
An exodus of miners from China began in June when Beijing ordered the shutdown of bitcoin miners operating in the country. Immediately afterwards, almost half of the Bitcoin network went dark when the miners looked for migration. Then, in September, China banned all cryptocurrency transactions.
As a result of the crackdown, countries like the US, Kazakhstan, and Russia have seen spikes in cryptocurrency mining activity. According to the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance, the US has even deposed China as the largest bitcoin miner in the world.
China accounted for up to 75% of the world’s hash rate at one point, thanks to an abundance of coal and hydropower plants that kept electricity prices low.