HomeCryptocurrencyNorway passes data center legislation signaling more scrutiny for Bitcoin miners

Norway passes data center legislation signaling more scrutiny for Bitcoin miners


Norway passed new legislation related to data centers, signaling more potential scrutiny for Bitcoin (BTC) miners.

The new legislation will mandate official registration from all data centers in the country, including information about the owners and leaders of these centers and the type of digital services they offer. Norway will become the first European country to establish such a framework.

With the new legislation, the government hopes to offer politicians a better overview of data centers in their municipalities, which will offer a better basis for accepting or declining their operations, said Terje Aasland, Norway’s minister of energy.

“The purpose is to regulate the industry in such a way that we can close the door for the projects we do not want”

The decision could mean more scrutiny for Bitcoin miners in the country, on top of the upcoming Bitcoin halving, which will reduce block issuance rewards in half, endangering the profitability of Bitcoin miners.

The crypto mining industry has been largely unregulated in Norway, added Aasland:

“[Crypto mining] is linked with large greenhouse gas emissions, and is an example of a type of business we do not want in Norway.”

The minister added that they are not interested in businesses looking to extract cheap energy from the country.

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Bitcoin miners under pressure

Numerous Bitcoin mining firms are currently operating in northern Norway, where electricity is the cheapest in the country.

Crypto mining firms in northern Norway use nearly as much electricity as the district of Lofoten, according to a 2023 report by local media outlet Dagsavisen.

Yet, Aasland noted that Bitcoin mining firms aren’t desired in the country. The minister stated that he welcomes data centers that fulfill societally beneficial roles, like centers that operate as storage servers, which he called an important part of the social structure of Norway.

The number of Bitcoin mining firms operating in the country is unknown to the government at the moment, but the new legislation will offer more information that will be used to carry on with Norway’s digitalization plan, according to Karianne Tung, the minister of digitalization and public governance of Norway.

Bitcoin miners are already under more pressure following this week’s upcoming halving. Bitcoin miners could liquidate $5 billion worth of BTC in the months after the halving, according to calculations by the head of research at 10x Research, Markus Thielen.

Related: 10 days until halving: Bitcoin mining profitability won’t necessarily fall