Residents of Granbury, Texas, are facing unprecedented disturbances, health issues, and environmental crises due to a local Bitcoin mining operation, as reported by TIME.
The continuous sound from the mining facilities has become a nightly ordeal for locals, as several residents have complained about migraines and sleep issues. There are also reports of wildlife disappearing from the area due to these noises.
Bitcoin mining facilities have significantly increased across the U.S., with Texas emerging as a hub due to its affordable energy, land availability, and favorable regulations. As of 2023, U.S. mining facilities represent over 35% of the global Bitcoin network’s hash rate. However, this growth has not come without its downsides. Granbury’s saga highlights the broader impact of the crypto mining expansion, from environmental degradation to escalating utility bills for consumers.
“It’s like sitting on the runway of an airport where jets are taking off, one after another”
– Cheryl Shadden, a nurse anesthetist told TIME
Initially launched by Generate Capital and later acquired by Marathon Digital Holdings, the operation in question has sparked an outcry within the community. Efforts to mitigate the noise, including a proposed sound barrier, have so far failed to provide relief, exacerbating residents’ frustrations. Legal avenues for recourse seem limited, with state laws providing little solace against the cacophony that reaches decibels well above safe levels.
A town hall meeting on Jan. 29 brought the community’s grievances to the forefront, showcasing the diverse and severe impact of the facility’s noise pollution. The community’s quality of life has significantly diminished from health crises to the potential devaluation of homes.
“My citizens are suffering,”
– Hood County Constable John Shirley
Marathon Digital Holdings has pledged to investigate the matter further. However, as Texas grapples with power supply concerns and environmental challenges, the situation in Granbury serves as a grim reminder of the need for a balanced approach to industry growth and community well-being.