The mining of the new self-proclaimed eco-friendly cryptocurrency Chia, which requires unused disk space to mine, has led to a catastrophic shortage of hard drives in the Middle Kingdom.
Chia — a new wave of madness
Chia Network, which is not even two months old, is already considered an environmentally friendly blockchain. Unlike Bitcoin, which uses a proof-of-work (PoW) algorithm, or Ethereum, with its timid attempt at switching to PoS, Chia has created a new consensus called “ proof of space and time.” It uses the free disk space for mining.
In an official document released by Chia, the company stated that since it does not use CPUs, GPUs, or ASIC mining machines as Bitcoin mining requires, it will save a large amount of electricity and be beneficial to the environment.
The network, launched on March 19, was created by Bram Cohen, the inventor of the Internet data transfer protocol BitTorrent. He is part of a group of software developers who are suspected of being Satoshi Nakamoto, but Cohen denies this
Since the launch of the Chia Network, mining in China has been growing. Chia used 2,251 petabytes of disk space, which is about 2.3 million terabytes. If the size of each hard drive is eight terabytes, about 288,128 hard drives were used for mining XCH. According to ChiaStatus, the storage expansion increases by 5–15% every day.
Hype Chia takes over China
Chia mining and its eco-friendly brand are experiencing a critical moment for crypto mining in China.
Given China’s ambitious climate goal of peaking carbon emissions by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2060, the country is now demanding stricter environmental regulations from its crypto miners. Чтобы выполнить это требование, некоторые майнеры обратились к возобновляемым источникам энергии для добычи Биткойнов и Эфириума. Others have moved their mining operations to countries with more crypto-friendly regulations.
Of course, the greener concept of Chia crypto mining is seen as an attractive alternative to mining.
“It is obvious that many miners already have a lot of the knowledge and equipment needed to mine certain cryptocurrencies,” said Marie Tatibouet, director of marketing at the crypto exchange Gate.io. “It would be reasonable for them to apply Chia mining, given the rules that will be tightened by the Chinese government for BTC mining,” she added.
Miners buy hard drives Online and offline
The craze for Chia-miracle mining has led to massive purchases of equipment both in the country and in other Asian countries, both online and offline.
At the Seg Plaza shopping center in Shenzhen, one of the largest electronics markets in Asia, heavy demand for equipment such as hard drives and solid-state drives (SSDs) led to their complete disappearance from the shelves.
Some stores still have professional-grade solid-state drives and hard drives, but their prices have skyrocketed since the launch of Chia.
At Seg Plaza, Western Digital’s eight-terabyte hard drive was priced at $ 300, up from $ 180 before the boom. The average price of a hard drive of this model increased by 172%.
Prices on the Internet have also increased. At Taobao, the largest online retail platform in China, Western Digital’s eight-terabyte hard drive costs about $417. A Seagate hard drive with the same storage capacity costs $216. Larger hard drives are harder to find. JD.com, another giant online store, sells 18-terabyte Western Digital hard drives for $757.
Now this madness has spread beyond China.