The drop in the price of cryptocurrencies is not keeping big companies from mining BTC. Recently, the Oman Investment Authority, for example, a sovereign wealth fund in the Middle East, announced its entry into the sector. The fund participated in Crusoe Energy’s $350 million Series C funding round.
The Denver-based company pioneered the use of gas flaring for oil extraction to generate energy and mine BTC. The term “gas flaring” refers to the excessive flaring of gas associated with oil extraction.
The practice faces criticism from environmental activists. After all, the process is one of the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions.
Middle Eastern oil company to mine BTC
In addition to the investment, Crusoe Energy will gain incentives to establish itself in the Middle East. The company’s CEO, Chase Lochmiller, says it will open an office in Muscat, capital of Oman, to capture flared gas and use it for mining.
While Crusoe Energy claims it can greatly reduce burning-related emissions, it is not the “darling” of climate activists. This is because they claim that the BTC mining process is energy intensive and excessive. Therefore, even with the use of gas that would be discarded, BTC mining, for activists, is not sustainable.
In March of this year, Crusoe Energy joined forces with US energy giant ExxonMobil. The partnership aims to develop a pilot project that would provide gas flaring to BTC miners.
In addition, Crusoe Energy also counts Canadian oil company Enerplus and Oklahoma-based Devon Energy among its customers. It is expected to start its first pilot project on using gas flaring to mine BTC in Oman next year.
BTC’s price is down 31.29% year-to-date, but Lochmiller says the major correction will not affect the company’s ambitious expansion plans.