Oil giant ExxonMobil is pursuing a pilot project to use flare gas from wells in North Dakota to power bitcoin mining. It is reported by Bloomberg, citing its own sources.
The startup Crusoe Energy Systems has become a partner of the company. It receives excess associated petroleum gas (APG) that would otherwise be flared due to lack of pipeline capacity.
The gas is used to power modular rigs that mine cryptocurrencies right next to wells in the Bakken shale field.
The project started in January 2021, in July the parties expanded its scope. Within its framework, Crusoe plants consume up to 0.5 million m3 of gas per month.
ExxonMobil intends to implement similar pilots in Alaska, Nigeria, shale basins in Argentina, Guyana and Germany.
She added that ExxonMobil expects to implement the World Bank’s recommendations to end conventional APG flaring by 2030. The press secretary called the information about the pilot “rumors and conjectures.”
Crusoe has permission to operate 20 mining modules in North Dakota, of which 11 are involved. The startup is implementing two more similar projects – together with Equinor and Devon Energy.
In February, it became known that ConocoPhillips was selling APG from North Dakota wells to an unnamed bitcoin miner.
Crusoe plants also burn gas, but unlike a torch, this is not in vain – electricity is produced at the same time. CoinShares estimates that 69 TWh are lost to flares in US fields each year.
Recall that in 2019, Crusoe raised $70 million and announced the deployment of 70 mining modules with a capacity of 1 MW each.