Police in the U.K. were shocked after they raided what they believed was an indoor cannabis growing operation, only to find a massive Bitcoin mining farm.
Police expected to find weed plants growing under high-intensity hydroponic lights, but instead they found roughly 100 computers dedicated to mining Bitcoin, reports CNBC.
While cannabis remains subject to prohibitionist laws in the U.K., in keeping with the times Bitcoin farms have become the newest form of illicit indoor grow operations – especially due to the massive drain on energy that these practices entail, as well as the harm it does to the environment.
The police decided to launch the raid after they detected a strange ventilation system and excessive heat emanating from the building, which are typically the tell-tale signs that somebody is running a massive energy-guzzling indoor pot farm.
While cryptocurrency isn’t illegal in the UK, the Police claimed the Bitcoin miners were found to be stealing electricity to compensate for the hugely expensive cost of the energy required to run their mining operation.
In some cases, Bitcoin farmers use more electricity than entire countries, with mining computers buckling under the pressure of solving highly complicated math problems that enable them to accumulate more crypto.
The energy required to operate Bitcoin mining rigs has become a controversial topic, especially after Tesla CEO Elon Musk blasted the environmental impact of cryptocurrency and began distancing the automaker from Bitcoin, which came as a surprise considering that the mogul has been a die-hard advocate of the alternative currency.
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