Although the state is keen to become a global centre for Bitcoin mining operations, citizens are concerned that the power grid will be overloaded.
Texas' electrical infrastructure will have to sustain the industry's estimated 5,000 megawatts (MW) of increased power demands by 2023, as the state expects a rapid inflow of Bitcoin mining operations.
Currently, the Bitcoin mining industry in Texas consumes 500 to 1,000 MW of power. According to reports, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) forecasts a fivefold rise in demand by 2023 and has planned an extra 3,000 to 5,000 MW.
This growth arises as the Lone Star State seeks to host 20% of the world's Bitcoin mining operations. Since the Chinese government officially restricted Bitcoin mining earlier this year, Texas has developed as the go-to spot for Bitcoin miners.
The state government has profited on China's crackdown by creating Texas a retreat for crypto miners, who can now access a 10-year tax exemption, sales tax credits, and state-sponsored workforce training.
Several Texas residents, on the other side, are concerned that the current power grid cannot be enhanced.
The management of the state's electrical grid by ERCOT came under intense investigation in February 2021, when blackouts afflicted the region during a severe cold period that left about 5 million residents without power for days.
ERCOT's report on November 19 failed to build confidence that the grid issues had been resolved. Amal Ahmed, a reporter with the Texas Observer, tweeted on November 22.
“The new seasonal assessment report (basically, a forecast) from ERCOT seems to indicate that, unsurprisingly, the agency hasn't changed it's approach at all to really prepare for extremes.”
Several miners have tried to assuage residents' concerns about the potential resource drain. The Texas Standard stated on October 21 that some Bitcoin miners have been working with local power companies to maintain the grid's stability.
However, as BTC mining operations become more eco friendly, several others want to operate utilising fully renewable and viable alternative energy sources such as natural gas flares.