China Targets Xinjiang’s Development Park for Introducing Bitcoin Mining in 2018

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In a new report, a central leading group for the inspection work of ecological and environmental protection said that ecological and environmental problems in some of the areas of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC) are still prominent, and are not well resolved.

  • The inspecting team revealed that certain localities and departments do not have the necessary understanding of the need for ecological and environmental protection of the autonomous regions.
  • Many entities have reportedly focused on development while neglecting the environmental downsides and blindly launching projects but “failing to manage and control them.”
  • The report also singled out Zhundong Economic and Technological Development Zone which has managed to attract investment and host “six illegal high-energy-consuming virtual currency mining enterprises,” since 2018.
  • The Chinese province of Xinjiang has historically been one of the major Bitcoin mining hubs in the country due to its abundant fossil fuel and hydroelectric energy.
  • Following the crackdown on mining operations, several industrial parks in the region were ordered to halt operations.
  • The Zhundong development park also received a notice in June last year demanding they shut down their operations immediately.
  • Despite the intense crackdown, China’s Bitcoin mining continues covertly. Its share of mining fell from 34.3% in June 2021 to 0.0% in July 2021.
  • However, the country has made a comeback in the space and is currently responsible for 21% of the Bitcoin mined globally, only second to the US, as per Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance’s (CCAF) new study.

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