The city of Fort Worth, Texas, has entered the Bitcoin mining industry at a governmental level, becoming the first in the country to do so. The six-month pilot program aims to establish the area as a blockchain welcome hub.
On Tuesday, Fort Worth’s City Hall Council unanimously voted to approve a resolution to accept a donation of three Bitcoin mining rigs.
The donations were made on behalf of the Texas Blockchain Council and are valued at $2,100 per rig. The models are called ‘Bitmain Antminer S9’, and will be set to mine Bitcoin for 24 hours a day, seven days a week for six months. After six months, the miners will be returned to Texas Blockchain, and the whole project will be re-evaluated to determine whether a full investment is required for the construction of a mining farm.
Mayor Mattie Parker oversaw the setup of the project. The rigs will be in a climate-controlled technology wing inside City Hall and will work under a private network, thus minimizing security risks.
"For Fort Worth, a lot of people don't know who we are. We want to change that conversation, and we believe that tech innovation including cryptocurrency is the way we're going to do that,”
Mayor Parker told CNBC.
One of the main aspects of the pilot being examined is its energy consumption. According to City Hall, each rig will consume the same energy as a household vacuum cleaner. However, this is a step that even Miami, one of the country’s most crypto-friendly cities, whose mayor even receives their salary in Bitcoin, hasn’t taken yet.
For now, the main focus of the project will not be related to turning a profit, but rather on initializing the movement of a city adopting Bitcoin mining.
Texas Blockchain Council President Lee Bratcher stated:
"Fort Worth has the geographic proximity to miners and a supportive city leadership that make it a front runner to be the bitcoin mining capital of Texas and therefore the U.S."
On the Flipside
- For cities and states with highly temperamental power grids, Bitcoin mining could offer solution to help governments stabilize electrical grids in the search for clean power.