According to the local “Tasmin News Agency” this week, it is reported that Iranian police have seized 45,000 Bitcoin mining equipment on the grounds that they illegally used subsidized electricity from the state-owned power company Tawani..

Mohammad Hassan Motavalizadeh, head of Tavanir, said that efficient application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC) bitcoin miners consume 95 megawatts (MW) of electricity per hour at a low price.

Iran’s Ministry of Energy said that in autumn, winter and spring, authorized miners are charged approximately 4,800 rials (US$0.11) per kilowatt hour. The subsidy rate may be half of the latter.

According to local media reports earlier this month, since cryptocurrency mining became legal in Iran in 2019, the Islamic Republic has closed 1,620 unauthorized mining farms. It said these farms consume 250MW of electricity.

Now, due to the increase in winter demand, countries in the Middle East are currently facing severe power shortages, with blackouts in major cities. The government decided to blame Bitcoin (BTC) mining for this serious situation.

As a result, the Iranian Ministry of Energy temporarily reduced the 600 MW power supply of all authorized BTC miners in the country and shifted their energy to household use.

According to Tasmin News Agency, the relevant authorities also stopped the production of a large mining company in southwestern Iran. The facility is owned by a Sino-Iranian investment company. According to reports, the facility uses “tens of thousands” of ASIC miners to withdraw bitcoin.

Some cryptocurrency researchers believe that although miners have become targets of attacks, they are not responsible for the current power outage. Ziya Sadr told the Washington Post that in Iran, Bitcoin mining accounts for only a small part of the country’s total electricity consumption, and Iran’s winter demand peaks at 40,000 megawatts.

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