'Help me get through the winter': Texas Gov. Greg Abbott pleads with crypto miners as severe winter weather arrives

'Help me get through the winter': Texas Gov. Greg Abbott pleads with crypto miners as severe winter weather arrives
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in 2016, Wikimedia Commons

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) is reportedly pleading with crypto miners to help the state get through the bitter winter in the event the electric power grid fails.

According to Bloomberg, details about Abbott's discussion with a group of crypto miners are now being publicized as the state braces for inclement winter weather. During the meeting, which was held at the governor's mansion in Austin, Texas, one concern was expressed: "Electricity-hungry Bitcoin miners could shore up the state’s power grid, a top priority after a deep freeze last winter triggered blackouts that left hundreds dead."

Four individuals who reportedly attended the meeting said that Abbott made his request clear. "Help me get through the winter," the governor reportedly said.

Per Bloomberg, surviving the winter may be a critical key if Abbott wants to win re-election as the electric grid and the governor's failed leadership last winter are two relatively weak spots for his campaign. A poll conducted by the University of Texas/Texas Tribune back in October also showed that "60% of Texans disapprove of how state leaders have handled the reliability of the grid."

Doug Lewin, an Austin, Texas-based energy consultant weighed in on the concerns about Bitcoin miners as he noted that there needs to be some form of process in place to ensure mining has ceased in the event the electrical grid becomes stressed.

“There has to be a really thoughtful approach to bringing gigawatts worth of Bitcoin onto the system,” said Lewin. “We’ve got to make sure that if we’re getting close to scarcity, people aren’t mining Bitcoins anymore.”

The Texas electric grid is one of the reasons why the Lone Star state is attractive to crypto mining companies. The Bloomberg report also explained why Abbott is embracing the industry.

"Texas’s cheap electricity and near-zero regulation, helped spur big companies like Riot Blockchain Inc., Singapore-based Bitdeer Group and the U.K.’s Argo Blockchain Plc to build some of the world’s largest Bitcoin mines in the state," the report reads.

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