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Cashing in on Trash: Bitcoin Mining Fixes Landfill Emissions

October 19, 2023

This discussion centers around a Marathon Digital Holdings report that explores how Bitcoin mining can effectively address methane emissions from landfills. Adam Swick, the Chief Growth Officer at Marathon Digital Holdings, discusses their mission to support Bitcoin's development by building a sustainable mining business. The podcast highlights the challenges of methane emissions management at landfills and explains the three common solutions: venting, flaring, and waste energy. Bitcoin mining is presented as a unique and innovative approach to this problem due to its ability to adapt to varying electricity supplies and efficiently utilize excess energy. The conversation underscores the role of policy frameworks in incentivizing Bitcoin mining at landfills and the potential for it to become a significant solution for mitigating methane emissions.

00:00 Introduction to the Bitcoin Magazine Podcast

04:44 Curtaiment Strategies and New Technologies

09:46 Waste to Energy and Bitcoin Mining

14:28 Bitcoin Mining as a Solution for Landfills

19:29 Bitcoin Mining on Landfills

24:06 The Potential and Challenges

28:52 Tailoring the Message for the Landfill Industry

33:31 Optimizing Production and Transmission

38:45 Bitcoin Mining and Market Scenarios

Transcripts are autogenerated. May contain typos.


hello everyone and welcome to the Bitcoin magazine podcast I'm your host Spencer Nichols and I'm really excited to bring on our guest Adam swick today uh Adam is the chief growth officer at Marathon digital Holdings and he is here to talk about a new report that they co-published with Bitcoin magazine Pro and it's titled cashing in on trash Bitcoin mining offers an economical solution to mitigating methane emissions from landfills um so today Adam and I are going to talk about the state of landfills in the United States um their


role in EN enal pollution namely methane um and of course how Bitcoin can be an environmentally and economically viable solution to dealing with landfill emissions um so as a heads up for everyone following along we're going to be public um pinning this new report down in the show notes for everyone who wants to follow along um but without further Ado Adam welcome to the Bitcoin magazine podcast how are you today uh thank you Spencer thank you Bitcoin magazine and thank you listeners for taking the time to listen to this uh


doing quite well today uh how about you Spencer yeah doing great uh really excited to chat about all this um I myself you know used to work in the landfill uh and waste energy industry so when I saw this report was published I was really excited to uh you know dig in um and it's also always great to see more Confluence between environmentally minded folks and the Bitcoin industry as you know myself I that's something I'm very passionate about so when marathon and Bitcoin magazine Pro collabed on


this I was uh you know very excited to see that happen um cool so I think you know before we dive into the report um that we do have pinned in the show notes I think it would be helpful for people who might not be familiar with Marathon for you to talk a little bit about what you guys do as a company um and you know we'll go from there certainly uh and so in short we're we're here Marathon digital Holdings here to support the development and security of Bitcoin by building the largest most agile most


sustainable Bitcoin mining business in the world uh we are a publicly traded Bitcoin minor headquartered here in the United States fully decentralized in remote in terms of people uh you know we've grown rapidly since I joined two years ago uh both in terms of uh employees but also more importantly in terms of hash rate uh so as of October 1st which is October 1st 2023 the last reports we published we have 23 ex aash of installed miners 19 x aash of operational Miners And so we're talking if you're from the power side of things


a little over 500 total megawatts and we are excited about supporting Bitcoin and excited about supporting the energy world and more importantly the intersection of those two which there are tons of potential and possibilities one of those being uh landfill methane and a lot of the unique problems that landfill methane has and the fact that I truly believe Bitcoin mining is a unique solution to that problem the likes of which has never existed yeah that's that's very exciting and I can't wait to unpack that a little bit


more with you um but I think before we do that if you could just also share a little bit about your background um you know what kind of work you're doing at Marathon as their Chief growth officer um and then also kind of how you might have found your way into this unique world of Bitcoin and and Bitcoin mining yeah definitely so background spent some time in some Management Consulting in early stage V Venture Capital investing and the fun thing about both both those jobs is it was your job to learn and it's a very


similar example to this you know in Venture Capital you would walk into a room to hear an entrepreneur pitch about this startup that they were building and so passionate about and you would often walk in and have not a lot of familiarity with the problem they were addressing but in quick order you would learn that this is actually a big problem and you had no idea as a regular citizen going about your day very similar to this landfill methane problem problem again not something until about a year ago that I really started


learning about and you don't realize how big this is uh or what a great solution Bitcoin mining is until you really start to dig into it so so looking forward to that uh found myself at Kraken digital ass exchange for a while uh which was really really fun and then joined Marathon approximately two years ago uh as Chief growth officer we're looking at things like uh new site expansion around the globe uh where to put sites how to partner with energy companies governments uh all sorts of fun stuff there we're also looking at optimizing


our existing miners uh looking into things like overclocking underclocking uh curtailment strategies new technologies coming out both on the as6 side the cooling side the energy side and so we like to call those energize and optimize and so spend a lot of time on each of those topics and also just spend a lot of time trying to track down cool new stuff uh this being in that this would technically I guess be in the energized bucket but I'll just also put it in the cool new stuff bucket yeah totally agree there um cool well thank you so much for


that background and I think now you know people have an idea of where you're coming from um and where marathon is coming from when they're exploring Bitcoin mining being integrated into landfill management we can kind of dive into how to cash in on trash uh per the name of the report um so you know to start I think we should just kind of identify the problem at hand and that is landfill methane um can you just give us a little bit of an idea of like where this comes from and why it's a problem like you know how common this is like


you know is this widespread uh and you know just kind of why why care about about landfill methan to begin with so the short answer is that every year over two billion metric tons of waste end up in landfills worldwide you know it's a simple sentence but quite frankly I have not wrapped my head around it yet I cannot visualize what a billion uh what what I can't visualize what a ton of waste looks like let alone two billion tons of waste ending up in landfills and what happens here which like I said I


didn't appreciate what a problem this is is but the organic matter in this waste breaks down and as it breaks down it releases methane this methane is a potent gas which uh affects global warning warming 80 times greater than carbon dioxide and so the problem is these landfills are creating and leaking this really really bad gas for global warming and we have the potential to turn it into a uh less bad gas of carbon dioxide to frame this another way as as I tried to wrap my head around it uh in the US Municipal Solid Waste landfills


release approximately four million metric tons of methane and so what is that that is the equivalent of 66 million gas powerered vehicles or about 80 Coal Fired plants and so again in the US we're talking about these landfills being the equivalent of 66 million gas powerered vehicles so uh this is a lot uh and again you talk about methane uh landfills are about 11% of global global methane emissions so this is this is not a small cause of the problem this is substantial uh and so that's what we're


talking about yeah yeah thank you for laying all that out I mean it is pretty mindboggling to think about first of all how large of um the overall methan emissions profile worldwide that landfills represent um and also this is a problem that's not going away I mean every day you know we are creating more landfills we're putting more stuff into the ground um and I think you know just thinking about in here you know in the United States where I live you know we do have um I guess relatively strict regulations on landfill management but


around the world like this is not a problem that's going to slow down anytime soon um but when it comes to like managing uh especially this methane there you know in this report there are three solutions that are kind of outlined and and these are venting flaring and waste energy so I think it would be good for the audience just to walk through and set the stage like what are those three methane Management Solutions um and can we we can kind of talk about um you know the drawbacks and challenges that that are evident and I think


that'll lead us nicely into showing you know why Bitcoin mining will be a nice uh tool in the toolkit to manage that methane um emissions yeah let's hit them in that order from you know least exciting to most exciting uh least exciting is venting and so this methane is building up under the ground in the landfill and so what's the solution you you know stick a pipe in the ground and let it out you know problem solved uh super simple to do uh but hence the problem you're just letting this methane out into the world


uh which a is not good for the world and B is kind of wasted potential in terms of what you could do this with this methane which then leads us to the second best option that we have which is flaring and so instead of just letting this gas into the world let's light it on fire first uh yes that is the solution uh and it is better because by burning the methane you're converting you know around 90% of it to carbon dioxide Which is less bad but some of the methane still escapes it uh you know is not good for air noise light


pollution and again it's still wasted potential because obviously whenever you're burning something you could you could do something with the energy that's being released which leads us to your your last one which again is the most exciting which I'm hoping most landfills will focus on is this waste to energy idea and so there's two subcomponents within here electricity and renewable natural gas uh renewable natural gas is a better fit for larger landfills this is involves some heavy capital investment uh and it's you know


kind of hard to do and so only worth it if you have a big landfill and kind of economies of scale at which point you're going to produce renewable natural gas which you can pipe around and you know sell as natural gas uh and then the second component electricity is you can put a generator uh on the methane and instead of just Lighting on fire you know you're effectively lighting it on fire in a generator to produce electricity uh and the first thing that comes to mind there is well great I could then produce electricity but to


what end uh you know oh the the I'll just sell it to the grid lot of complexities there you these landfills are often in the middle of nowhere you know you don't have your landfill downtown uh in in Center City Square it's often far off because nobody wants to be near the landfill and so just connecting to the grid may be difficult just geographically because you're not near it second of all grid connection times can be quite long you know we've heard landfills trying to produce electricity and they want to sell it to


the grid and they're told great we could probably get you connected in four to five years uh but regardless there's a potential to produce electricity and so you can see where I'm going with this is if you're not a big landfill that wants to produce renewable natural gas if you're a smaller landfill out in the middle of nowhere that has the potential to produce electricity what can you do with it great news Bitcoin mining yeah no it is really fascinating to think about again like like you say wasted


potential and there is so much of it out there um and like this the existence of RNG facilities or um you know natural gas to electricity facilities on these landfills it raises the question like you know why wouldn't that be everywhere um and I think you know that kind of highlights why there is uh differences in landfill management that that are very idiosyncratic um and also you know it just kind of shows like the ability to sell electricity to the grid to someone that's going to use it is not always a solution for everyone I mean in


Bitcoin mining does bridge that gap which is is incredibly novel um in its own right um which is very cool but um yeah I think looking at this like if you could just unpack a little bit more why can't we just send all of the electricity from this methane that we combust into the grid like I know as you know being from Marathon that's something you guys are intimately familiar with these this lead time on energy transmission and how that's led to inefficiencies in the grid but could you help us unpack that a


little bit more like why is it that we can't just you know pipe this this r or this electricity to to wherever it needs to go sure so first of all geography like I said more than often you might be out in the middle of nowhere and so just logistically being connected to the grid might not be possible like you truly might be out in the middle of nowhere uh and so similarly equally difficult to transport renewable natural gas you know if there's not big power lines running to you what are you going to do and


secondly is that grid connection time as mentioned is I I am very pleased that I'm not operating the grid because it seems hard you know balancing that demand it's again something you take for granted is the grid is balanced at all times the amount of electrons going in have to equal the amount of electrons going out and so as a grid operator you're constantly dealing with that balance issue and so when you have a landfill come up to you and say you know hey I'd like to put some more electrons


onto the grid you know they have to be in a Quee with the new solar plants being built the new wind farms being built and it's a it's a it's a long list and and it's important to do it correctly and so you might be told to wait uh and this is a problem today uh that can be solved with Bitcoin mining today uh and SO waiting is sometimes not an option uh and so I'd say those are are two of the biggest challenges facing these landfills in in terms of why not just sell it to the grid is uh again it


sounds so simple but when you get into the details you really can't yeah and so I think you know when you look at the option of why not just sell it to the grid you've obviously clarified why that's not always a solution um and I think we can kind of invert that and say why not just mine Bitcoin and I think that there's um this will help us kind of take in the Nuance of where Bitcoin mining can be a solution for landfills um this report does talk about the distinction between you know small medium and large


landfills and how the economics breaks down for selling things like RNG versus mining Bitcoin so with all that in mind can you help us understand where might Bitcoin mining be an economical solution like what is what is the profile of a landfill where you would look at it and be like hm H those guys should really take a look at Bitcoin mining to manage their emissions uh sure so if you're a big landfill you know over 5 million tons of waste somewhat near an urban Hub uh with capital then you know transparently renewable natural gas


might be the best answer for you in terms of both mitigating the methane and producing the highest kind of Roi uh possible however if you're one of the many hundreds of landfills that are located in a remote area with less than 5 million tons of waste uh the math will probably not pencil for the renewable natural gas option at which point you're you're faced with venting flaring or electricity and as mentioned the electricity problem of both geographical difficulty connecting and grid weight times means that Bitcoin mining could be


an excellent excellent answer to be clear Bitcoin mining could be an answer for for all landfills out there uh but when it comes to what your options are I'll say that large landfills that are you know near Urban hubs have the option of Bitcoin mining or renewable natural gas but everybody else just has the option of Bitcoin mining because the renewable natural gas the math just doesn't work yeah and and so I think to better highlight why Bitcoin mining is a good solution for integrating into these remote landfills uh I think it'd be good


to highlight what are the technicalities of Bitcoin mining that make it useful in these types of scenarios um I know the report talks about things like modularity and location agnosticism um but could you help us unpack like why Bitcoin mining would work on landfills in um compared to other industrial users of electricity sure and and part of excitement is the requirements of Bitcoin mining as a solution here is a short list uh you know we need methane in concentr enough form to run a generator with it and there


there's ways around that in terms of using purifiers to further concentrate the methane then you just need a little flat land to you know again the modularity of Bitcoin mining means that we can show up with one Bitcoin minor or a container of Bitcoin miners or several shipping containers of Bitcoin miners uh and and that's the benefit of it uh another benefit is limited involvement of the landfill owner in terms of not a lot of Hoops to jump through in terms of interacting with a public utility uh and


trying to sell your electricity to the grid uh the geographical flexibility of Bitcoin mining you know Bitcoin miners do not need high-speed fiber we can operate with satellite internet quite well uh uh and so that's a common misconception that we Face a lot is people concern that oh I don't have highspeed internet again it's it's easy to solve and the last piece again which makes Bitcoin money unique is the uh interruptibility and ability to kind of Ratchet up and down power consumption and you know as the landfill


is producing more or less methane it'll produce more or less electricity and with the evolution of firmware you know Marathon has developed its own firmware allowing us to overclock underclock quickly curtail our machines that means you know if there's more methane electricity we can push the machines harder and consume that and if there's less we can back down the machines and consume less and maintain that nice balance where it's hard to come up with a different industry that can Flex in real time its electricity consumption


you know plus or minus 10 20 30 40% uh so Bitcoin mining really is unique amongst uh all the potential Solutions out there in solving this problem yeah absolutely I mean it it just leads one to think like it Bitcoin mining has these novel character istics and that's exemplified by the fact that there is no user of this methane in many places I I want to say around half of methane from landfills in the US is just straight up vented like there there is no use for it um and it is you know environmentally detrimental as you've


laid out so I think that goes a long way towards uh just showing the novelty of Bitcoin both from a technology perspective um but also the incentive structures as well yeah I mean it's good for the environment to do something with that methane uh it's good for the landfill owner economically uh to you know partner with a Bitcoin miner and it's good for the Bitcoin miner economically and it's good for Bitcoin because it means more decentralized uh security for the network yeah and I think one of the cool


things about Bitcoin mining on landfills 2 is that Bitcoin miners are modular you know you can have one rig out there or you can have a thousand and it'll really just be you can design it to fit the needs of that particular system and then also there is kind of this seasonal variation in methane production from landfills where you know at a certain point of the year when it's cooler there's going to be less decomposition of that landfill material and it's going to produce less methane and then you


know you can essentially modulate how much uh hashing you're doing based on those conditions so I think that also just kind of highlights one of the unique aspects of Bitcoin miners as energy users um that a lot of other Industries really aren't able to do given given the nature of their technology yeah completely agree and I think it's in those in the seasonality your initial gut reaction is okay you can add Miners and remove miners but I think as an industry we've gotten to a point where firmware on these Miners and


the ability to overclock or underclock is becoming really powerful so you could arguably achieve a lot of that seasonality with exactly that you can have a set number of miners there and you could ratchet up or down their power consumption and therefore their hash rate dependent on how much is coming out and so what other industry can consume a lot of this spare electricity out in the middle of nowhere and can you know increase or decrease their power consumption you know plus or minus 20 30 40% uh within seconds you know that


didn't exist and hence the excitement over this landfill methane problem uh I don't think there are other great Solutions out there I think this is kind of a no-brainer which is why it's so exciting yeah absolutely and I think the novel part of it I mean as you just mentioned but there's kind of this secondary component is that it's a market-based incentive there isn't a kind of top- down policy impetus being like hey you know you need to use Bitcoin mining in these types of markets Bitcoin miners if it makes sense for


them will go and oftentimes as you're aware of like a lot of this is going to be behind the meter Renewables people are looking for wasted methane and that just aligns very well from an environmental point of view um without needing kind of these policy mechanis mechanisms in place um but that being said you know we're talking about where Bitcoin mining on landfills makes sense and there is kind of a policy and Regulatory framework in the US where they're trying to clamp down on methane emissions um and so I'm curious


if you have any thoughts on how you know there is a I believe an order from the White House that came out in around 2021 they were like hey guys we got to take a look at large large landfills we got to reduce our methane emissions there um so I guess that kind of leads me into you know how important is the policy framework for incentivizing mining to happen on landfills um and yeah I guess we'll just start with that it's certainly helps I think as with most things Bitcoin Bitcoin mining arguably one of the biggest issues we're facing


is just adoption and education and so having the White House or other government officials point out the problem will cause a lot of people to look for a solution and as they're looking I hope that they come across Bitcoin mining and realize what a great potential solution it is and policy in this case I think only helps Bitcoin mining potenti potentially be adopted quicker the way that I like to oversimplify it to people is if the government is telling you in your landfill that you have to start mitigating your methane emissions you


have two options you could spend your own money to become compliant with this government rule uh you know either by whatever you do flaring or trying to sell so you could pay to uh become compliant or a Bitcoin could show up and pay you to be compliant uh it's it's you know turns it on its head it goes from this sudden fear of oh goodness I have to deal with this regulation I'm gonna have to spend money uh to wait this is an opportunity I can actually make money by partnering with a Bitcoin minor and a


side piece of that is that I happen to become compliant and hugely reduce my methane emissions uh and so I think policy helps but I think again the policy seem to be focused on a some larger landfills and I think I get the sense from conversations that some of the smaller landfills are still proactively thinking about it a because of the upside of again Revenue Potential from Bitcoin mining but B because again they sense that regulation is coming and so might as well get out ahead of it yeah and so like when you're having


these kinds of conversations I'd be curious like you know what has the interest level been if you're speaking directly with landfill operators um and then kind of extrapolating out from that like what kind of scale do you think Bitcoin mining on landfills can reach is this going to be a niche application or is this going to be you know you need this if you want to compete in that that Marketplace Where do you um yeah where do you see both of those pieces coming in right now yeah conversations with landfill owners are they're they have an


appetite to learn and they're learning much more quickly uh I think hearing the word Bitcoin mining can cause a lot of people to just kind of shut down and think cryptocurrency and uh maybe things they've read in the headlines but instead focusing on the problem that the landfill owner is facing and the solution again almost at times not even mentioning the word Bitcoin uh I exaggerate but basically saying hey you've got a methane problem we've got a methane consumption solution problem that happens to produce money uh to


oversimplify for people and I think they're getting that then they start to ask the questions and then the idea of Bitcoin becomes introduced and so I think word is spreading and I think reports and hopefully this podcast helps to do that uh and that people are understand that this is a potentially exciting solution you know different eras we've gone through in the Bitcoin mining World starting with hobbyists in their garage to then big industrial you know 250 megawatt behind the meter solar farms uh this is


different than that as mentioned the ideal landfill is probably less than four megawatts of power and so this could be hobbyist doing it uh but in terms of best practices this is where marathon's trying to lean in in terms of you know when you have a 250 megawatt site it makes sense to have a team there 247 uh if you have a you know one megawatt site that sometimes doesn't make sense and so that it PR presents some unique challenges having these things in remote areas is being able to service them and so there is a world


where you need some special skills to do this at scale marathon's focused on building those special skills so uh you know this has the potential to to be big by doing a lot of landfills but each individual landfill is going to be a little be small uh but I would argue you know that's just looking at from the Bitcoin mining how much Bitcoin how much power can we consume you know from an environmental standpoint this is is incredibly exciting because the impact you're having by mitigating this methane


is huge uh and so from that standpoint it's a massive potential uh and for both those reasons we're excited yeah absolutely um and I guess I be really curious to hear like what what was the impetus behind this report like why write it now um you know I mean people like Daniel baton who you cite in the report have been talking about the importance of mitigating methane on landfills many others in the Bitcoin space have as well um so why is Marathon looking at this particular issue at this point in time yeah no Daniel's great I


he was one of the first people that uh put it in my head of you know this isn't just this is the potential for Bitcoin to be a carbon negative blockchain uh and I love when he says that ethereum switched to proof of stake uh was actually a screw-up because it means that they can't go carbon negative uh while Bitcoin mining now can be a potentially carbon good for the world uh and love that perspective and I think it was a combination of things I think it was a lot of exciting perspectives like that coming together right now I think it was


Marathon really focusing and investing in Technology Innovation and what's next uh and quite frankly selfishly as you're having these conversations you know it's one thing to talk to a landfill owner it's another thing like talk to a landfill owner and be like hey here's something that explains it a lot better than I can ever explain it hopefully that's what this report does uh is very clearly outlines this and hopefully word will spread and hopefully you know all this methane can be mitigated in a much shorter time


frame through the publication of this report rather than news slowly trickling and getting out there I hope yeah and I will say this report like doesn't bite off more than it can chew it's very easily digestible like you know it lays out here's the problem here's how we've Managed IT and here's why this is a better solution for certain places and it identifies those things uh th those locations for that solution in a very um straightforward way so I think that's that you guys have done a good job of


kind of tailoring this message for uh the people that it's aimed at um which I'm very excited to see you know as further conversations around this evolve um you know where where that goes um I hope so yeah and I guess you know have has this report gotten any response that you've noticed so far I mean I know people in the Bitcoin space have been talking about it but is there anyone outside of you know the the Bitcoin nerds that are uh you know appreciating this report for what it is yes no it's like I said it's


generated a lot more exciting conversations and we have more people reaching out uh to learn about it to ask follow-up questions to ask us to explain it hopefully uh listening to this could be uh another potential solve for that uh so it's caused people in the landfill and energy space I think to lean in and want to start learning more I think it's caused people in the Bitcoin and Bitcoin mining space to get excited uh and clarify a lot of the excitement of why this is exciting you know as with most


things you hear a lot of people on Twitter mention it but sometimes it's hard to put together all the pieces and so that was another rationale for this report is here it all is in one place super digestible visual uh easy to understand uh and so I hope that's the biggest goal of the report is just getting more people excited and reception I've seen in the in the online world and in the real world in calls we're having every day uh it seems to be working of course I always wish it was more uh but this report's definitely


helping great very glad to hear that um and you know I have two more questions for you but like if you you know say I were somebody actively working in the landfill industry still you know what would you say to me after having written this report like you know what's your elevator pitch to somebody that has yet not yet explored Bitcoin mining as a solution for methane mitigation yeah I think in short it's exactly that as mentioned earlier is hey with your methane emissions do you want to pay to be compliant or would you like to be


paid to be compliant and reduce those methane emissions that's the short pitch and if you'd rather be paid to mitigate your methane emissions then you should look into Bitcoin mining uh using your your landfill methane uh or you can pay to be compliant and and deal with a lot of the the mess yourself uh and so hopefully people hear that message hopefully people that read the report hope people start to think about this more and hopefully people uh reach out to Marathon or others to put this into action again this is something we can do


this isn't some white paper of something that might be possible 10 years from now this is something we can do today uh you know the tech we have the technology yeah uh and so this is I I hope it accelerates the learning uh because again if every landfill in the world read this and decided to do it tomorrow uh we we could and again that would be huge for the environment that would take that you know was it 10% of global methane emissions uh and hopefully bring it down to much much lower so that's my hope


yeah no very well said and uh to kind of take this conversation into a more forward-looking Avenue um I'd love to understand you know where you think the mining industry is going to go um as far as Energy Mix and the types of operations that are going to be predominant like you've said Bitcoin mining has gone through these different epochs just as Bitcoin has in terms of going from hobbyist to large industrial mines and then you know you mentioned that you know it might even go um disperse a little bit into these smaller


you know methane uh or sorry these smaller landfills that are distributed um so yeah what is the overall trend you're seeing in the mining industry or or as Marathon sees it I think the short answer is there's more and more options out there which is good more options more decentralization and decentralization everything sense of the word decentralization in terms of geographic and where this is decentralization in terms of where the actual electrons are coming from uh is good uh decentralization in terms of


who's doing the mining is good uh that's the overall trend you know thinking about a a speaking as a public minor the things that we care about are obviously making sure we have some of the lowest operating costs and most efficient operations out there so that we have the agility and optionality to continue to mine and secure the Bitcoin Network under any conditions uh bitcoin price conditions or Global hash rate conditions and so landfill methane I think is a great way to lower your operating costs because again this this methane would


otherwise just be lit on fire uh and so hopefully you know on paper you can get this for for much cheaper while doing a greater good for the environment uh and that's just one piece you know this is landfills is just one piece there's many other more unique ways of producing electricity finding stranded energy finded wasting energy and partnering with energy generators to solve problems I think that's the biggest Trend shift I'm seeing is even two years ago when I first joined it felt like marathon and


Bitcoin miners were a customer of energy generators a customer of utilities where we showed up and said we'd like to buy some power please whereas today we're being viewed more as a partner or an instrument uh or a tool where the energy generator somebody building a new wind or solar farm uh or a government uh who has stranded power somewhere or a energy demand and generation mismatch says hey I've got this problem and I think Bitcoin mining is the solution and it is in a lot of cases and so those are much


more exciting conversations to have rather than us just being a customer but being a true partner uh in helping to optimize electricity optimize it economically by trying to create more value from the electrons optimizing it from an operational perspective in terms of balancing that's the overall trend which I hope continues uh in terms of recognizing that Bitcoin mining is this awesome awesome instrument and not just a buyer of electricity yeah absolutely and like the way you're talking about that is is Bitcoin is basically


optimizing the production and transmission of electrons and at by the same token it's optimizing the production and transmission of capital and I think like that's such a ve such a cool Confluence because you know that is really what economies are built upon um and you know if I'm me I just look at this and I just see so much opportunity both for the industry but for the people that are like you know tangential to it that are going to benefit just from the fact that Bitcoin Miners and the Bitcoin


industry is operating within their economic sphere so I think that's just incredibly exciting and I love the way you explain that no exactly I mean you asked earlier why I publish this why are we spending time on this you know a Innovation is cool B it helps preserve our agility and optionality but you know quite frankly another reason that we do this you know marathon is just a sum of individuals this is this is cool like what what what do we want to work on stuff like this like this is this is awesome stuff uh and so if we really


boil it down to why are we why do we write this report why do we think about this because it's cool yeah absolutely couldn't agree more um and so and my last kind of forward-looking question here is this can be a bit of a tough one but like you know what impact do you think the having is going to have on the mining industry I think I'd be remiss not to pick your brain I think you know everyone who's watching miners is uh is very curious to see what unfolds yeah it's I wish I knew the answer uh


and I think that's I think that is the best answer number one is just recognition that we don't know uh I know what I hope will happen I know what historical patterns have shown however we cannot as a large Bitcoin minor we cannot rely on historical patterns and we cannot rely on what Adam hopes will happen uh instead we focus on uh again number one making sure we have the lowest operating cost and most efficiency when it comes to operations uh having the most efficient Fleet and investing in that most most efficient


Fleet uh you know number two it's Innovation investing in technology and finding other competitive Moes uh that allow you to have a unfair advantage to win uh through unique firmware cooling Technologies your pool uh so that's the second thing we've done because that's ultimately what it all boils down to is preserving optionality and Agility you know we don't know what's going to happen but if you're backed in a corner and you you only thrive in 80% of scenarios that's good odds but I don't


want to be a part of that yeah and so it's instead it's looking at the wide variety of what could happen uh and being ready for all of those uh and so that's what we've been focused on you know if things remain rough uh at after whether it be macroeconomic or Bitcoin specific uh prices in global hash rate uh we're prepared for that and if things uh turn very differently post havening and become very bullish uh we're also prepared for that and so a bit of a non-answer but I ultimately think the


best answer and that's genuinely how we think about it yeah well it's funny in my head I'm like oh you know the having is is coming up mining revenue is going to be cut in half and like we've just been going through this bare market for so long like I kind of forgot the price could go up like yeah a possible scenario so it is interesting to think about how if you want to be relatively competent compared to your competition you need to be prepared both for kind of this this bearish or or crab market


scenario but you also need to be ready if price does take off you need to be able to take advantage of that more than the next guy so that you you know yeah this in this Bitcoin mining race that you are uh better positioned than your competition exactly I mean we're constantly looking at every all the scenarios out there bitcoin price goes down flat up way up way down uh and you know we plan for the bad ones we hope for the good ones but we're also ready for the good ones uh if that makes sense yeah well and on this environmental


topic too like what impact say price stays equal as it is now around 27k um what impact might that have on bitcoin's emissions profile um I know people always talk about you know the cheapest electricity is that that has no demand you think that you know if margins are compressed people are going to flock even more to that that energy source so do you think it would have a meaningful impact to having on bitcoin's emissions profile or how how could we think about that yeah two answers number one in academic sense yes uh you know


if bitcoin price stays tough hash price you know which is your Revenue per Tera has stays low then it's going to force uh people to use the most efficient machines and find the most the cheapest operating costs those cheapest operating costs are often again where there is unused energy whether it be stranded energy or whether it be exactly this landfill methan that's seems like it where it would push people people won't be willing to pay uh you know High dollars per kilowatt for anything anymore however uh once you go beyond


the academic sense and you start to look at the practical sense this is going to be interesting because people have contracts that are going to go two or three years forward some of them are power purchase agreements which are take or pay meaning they have to they're they've signed up to buy the electricity uh and so there's the here's what should happen if you know everybody could make decisions in the instant and we're perfectly rational which is another assumption which I question if we should


be assuming or not uh and then there's the reality of the situation and so this is not going to play out in an academic sense uh and hence the need for optionality and agility as an organization to be able to respond as other people may at times act irrationally or may act rationally because they are tied into contracts or optimizing for things that you were not considering optimizing for uh so uh yes to your answer but also no okay got it that that makes a ton of sense there um cool well Adam is there anything else


you'd like to leave our audience with um anything we haven't discussed today I feel like we've done a good job of going through identifying you know what the problem is with landfill methane where it comes from how we've historically dealt with it whether that's venting or flaring um or you know waste energy and then kind of we talked about why Bitcoin mining is a unique solution to this problem um and how the industry can you know appraise this potential solution um but yeah is there anything else that you


would like to discuss and leave our audience with uh no I take a look at the report please like I said read about it I think it's pretty cool uh share it with your friends uh as landfill methane uh conversations come up at your local cocktail parties as I'm sure it always does uh and you know in the weird chance that you know a landfill that have this problem please Point them our way uh we're excited about this and many other Innovations in the Bitcoin space and the energy space uh you know follow along


and stay tuned you can find us at mar.com as mentioned M on Twitter at Marathon DH uh you can find myself uh on Twitter easily and uh please reach out with any other cool ideas that you have because uh we're excited to hear them yeah absolutely well Adam thank you so much for joining us on the Bitcoin magazine podcast again we will have this report uh co-published by marathon and Bitcoin magazine Pro down in the show notes wherever you are watching this um and again appreciate you taking the time this was fascinating and we look forward


to seeing uh what may arise from uh you know the collaboration between Bitcoin Miners and landfill operators should be exciting stuff yes thanks Spencer and more importantly thank you uh to everybody that took the time to listen absolutely cool