- Russia's third-largest oil producer, Gazpromneft, is entering the bitcoin mining space.
- Gazpromneft will be partnering with Swiss-based bitcoin mining firm BitRiver to deliver energy resources to new and remote oil field locations.
- BitRiver was previously sanctioned by the U.S. for reportedly assisting Russian avoidance of sanctions.
The third largest oil producer in Russia, Gazpromneft, is partnering with Swiss-based bitcoin mining firm BitRiver to build out mining operations located at oil fields according to a memorandum from the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
BitRiver will assist Gazpromneft in developing datacenters where the oil producer will receive energy from the remote mining company at either new oil fields where infrastructure is not currently established, or remote sites with expensive transportation costs.
"Over the next two years, BitRiver intends to implement projects to create its own data centers for power-intensive computing with power scaling up to 2 [gigawatts], including [petroleum gas], which will additionally provide high and stable power consumption," Igor Runets, founder and CEO of BitRiver, reportedly stated in the memorandum.
Interestingly, BitRiver is not a newcomer to Russian business. This past April, the U.S Treasury Department sanctioned BitRiver adding the company to the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) list stating the company is “helping support Putin’s brutal war of choice.”
However, while the partnership between BitRiver and Gazpromneft is innovative, the two companies were not the first to take this approach. This past March, it was reported that Exxon Mobil, the largest U.S. oil producer, was piloting bitcoin mining operations. The company reportedly wanted to further reduce its excess of burned gas, or flared gas.
Similarly, U.S. bitcoin mining firm Crusoe Energy announced plans to move generators and mining equipment to Muscat, Oman in the Middle East to capture flared gas and cut down on emissions as well.