While producing one Bitcoin in Italy costs over $200,000, in some countries it’s hundreds of times cheaper, according to a recent report by CoinGecko.
The report looked at the profitability of solo Bitcoin mining based solely on average household electricity costs across different countries. It found mining is only profitable in 65 countries worldwide, with the majority located in Asia. Meanwhile, Europe has just five profitable countries for individual miners.
This is largely due to the exorbitant cost of electricity in parts of Europe. Italy topped the list as the most expensive place to mine, with an average cost of $208,560 to generate one Bitcoin. Costs were similarly high in Austria ($184,352) and Belgium ($172,382).
Contrast this to Lebanon, where CoinGecko estimates a Bitcoin can be mined for just $266 due to cheap electricity rates. That’s a whopping 783 times less than the cost in Italy! Iran came in second with an estimated mining cost of $532 per Bitcoin.
However, despite having some of the lowest electricity costs globally, countries like Iran and Lebanon have complex relationships with Bitcoin mining. Iran legalized it in 2019 but has since flip-flopped on the policy. Meanwhile, Lebanon suffers from frequent power outages, making mining difficult.
The report highlights how Bitcoin’s energy-intensive mining operations gravitate toward wherever power is cheapest. But the complexities of mining in countries with unstable power grids and policies show there are many other factors at play. The pursuit of cheap electricity leads Bitcoin miners to unexpected places worldwide.