Concerns about bitcoin's heavy environmental impact are pushing miners toward carbon-free nuclear energy as cities like Miami look to capitalize on the trend, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who has fast become a beloved figure in crypto circles, told the Journal that he has been pitching bitcoin mining firms on his city's nuclear facilities and crypto friendliness.
A Miami-based nuclear plant owned by Florida Power & Light has been in talks with bitcoin miners over how to get ahold of cheap land near the facility to host mining rigs, Suarez told the Journal. He said worries about bitcoin's eco-unfriendliness "come from the fact that a lot of the mining was being done in coal-producing countries."
In June, Suarez made a similar pitch to Chinese firms displaced by Beijing's mining ban.
"The fact that we have nuclear power means that it's very inexpensive power," he told CNBC at the time. "We understand how important this is … miners want to get to a certain kilowatt price per hour."
While bitcoin mining is a highly energy-intensive activity, using nuclear power generates nearly zero carbon emissions or air pollution - presenting a seemingly tidy fix to a growing concern.
Outside of Miami, too, miners are eyeing other opportunities to link with nuclear energy sources.
Nuclear startup Oklo Inc. for example, has signed a 20-year deal to supply energy to Compass Mining through its mini reactor. Oklo CEO Jacob DeWitte told the Journal that he had received requests from other interested bitcoin miners, though federal approval is still forthcoming.