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Creation Care: The impact of Bitcoin mining on Seneca Lake

July 19, 2021, 6:00 pm7:00 pm

Join the Creation Care team of the Diocese of Central New York to learn how Bitcoin mining is affecting Seneca Lake and the surrounding environs. Dr. Tony Ingraffea, Professor Emeritus at the Cornell University School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, will discuss the environmental consequences of operating the Greenidge generation facility on a Zoom call July 19th at 6:00 pm.

Greenidge is an old, formerly coal-fired power plant on Seneca Lake. Bought in 2014 by a Greenwich, CT-based private equity firm, it was re-commissioned to produce electricity by burning natural gas to “mine” Bitcoin, thus creating major environmental concerns:

  • Seneca Lake is being warmed by the permitted 134,000 gallons per day of 108 F-degree water that it discharges into the lake during the summer. The warm water is hazardous to aquatic life and contributes to algal “blooms.”
  • Re-fitted to burn natural gas, the plant’s carbon dioxide and methane emissions are contributors to global warming and will seriously hinder New York State from meeting the targets set by the state’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act of 2019.
  • Bitcoin mining requires significant amounts of electricity to run powerful computers and to cool them. Overall, the electricity currently used to mine Bitcoin internationally is comparable to that need to power the entire nation of Chile.

The Greenidge facility operates 8,000 computers 24/7 to mine Bitcoin, and yet Bitcoin has no socially useful purpose. Indeed, Bitcoin is the black-market currency of choice for Russian hackers who install ransomware to prevent hospitals and critical infrastructure from operating, and thus extract multi-million-dollar ransom payments.

Dr. Anthony Ingraffea has deep expertise in the environmental issues posed by the Greenidge facility, including many years of experience as a consultant to the energy industry.  His biography and qualifications are available here.

To register for the Zoom meeting (free) please visit https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYkd-ChqDooHNMebvbKO3ldyQ3q_8W4AoPe.

The meeting will be recorded and a link to the recording will be posted on the diocesan website.


July 19, 2021
6:00 pm–7:00 pm
Event Categories:


Online Event


Episcopal Diocese of Central New York
(315) 474-6596
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