Quebec is one of the 10 provinces of Canada and it was profiled in the blockchain ecosystem as a territory with high potential for converting in one of the Bitcoin mining centers. This conclusion was based on the low price of electrical energy in the province. However, the government of Quebec does not agree with the mining industry and expressed negative opinions about the arrival of mining companies to its territory.
According to Bloomberg, Hydro-Quebec, the largest electrical power supply company in the entire province warned that cheap electrical energy would not be available for the Bitcoin mining companies that would like to establish their operations in the province, since these companies do not contribute directly to the economy of the province of Quebec.
Quebec has the cheapest electrical energy in the entire North America, both for consumers and industry. This makes this Canadian province one of the territory with the highest potential to become a cryptocurrency mining center.
The government of Quebec, the only stockholder of Hydro-Quebec public company suggested establishing a new, higher electric rate for the cryptocurrency mining companies located in Quebec. Philippe Couillard, the Prime Minister of Canada, pointed out at a conference held in Montreal that the Canadian state was not particularly interested in the mining companies, because they provide any value for the society.
Couillard said: “If you want to come settle here, plug in your servers and do Bitcoin mining, we’re not really interested. There needs to be added value for our society; just having servers to do transaction mining and acquire new bitcoins, I don’t see the added value.”
However, the prime minister said the Canadian government is receptive to the possibility that companies specialized in the blockchain technology establish their operations on the territory of Canada with the goal of helping to create an ecosystem that would develop different solutions for the region. This project would even allow these companies to use cryptocurrencies to incorporate in the financial sector.
Weeks ago, Hydro-Quebec said it had received hundreds of requests for supply of electrical energy from cryptocurrency mining companies that were planning to establish mining operations in the province. According to the electrical power supply company, 9,000 megawatts of energy would be necessary to satisfy the demand of the mining companies, which presents one fourth of the total megawatts that Hydro-Quebec is capable of producing. The total capacity of the company is around 37,000 megawatts.
Eric Martel, the Executive Director of Hydro-Quebec said different conversations with more than 30 mining companies were held, among which stood out companies from China and Russia.
Martel also said it would take several months to study meticulously the received requests in order to make sure that the Bitcoin miners would not jeopardize the power supply in the province of Quebec. In this sense, the power supply company is not planning on constructing new hydroelectric plants and that is why they are thinking of limiting the number of mining companies present in the province.
The Executive Director of Hydro-Quebec said: “If all we do is connect the bitcoin miners who have applied, we could create an issue for ourselves. There are limits to what we can do. I have a huge network with lots of capacity, but I cannot host the entire planet. If you think of the 10 biggest names in data centres globally, we’re talking to almost everybody. We have available land and our energy is 99 percent renewable. For a company’s branding, it’s much better when you can say your data centre operates with renewable energy.”
However, even though the project sounded hopeful for the blockchain ecosystem and would convert Quebec in the goose that laid the golden eggs, the new statements coming from the Prime Minister Couillard have radically changed the panorama. It is a situation that could make it difficult for the mining companies to establish their operations in Quebec.
On the other hand, this is not the first time Hydro-Quebec showed interest in the cryptocurrency world and the blockchain companies. For example, the company thought of donating the excessive electricity to the cryptocurrency mining industry, an action that would mean a lot to the blockchain companies.