Chinese Bitcoin Mining Operation Shut Down in Wyoming Amid National Security Concerns

  • Sergey Maga
  • 22 May, 2024 09:24
Chinese Bitcoin Mining Operation Shut Down in Wyoming Amid National Security Concerns

Wyoming’s cryptocurrency industry faces significant changes as MineOne, a Chinese-owned Bitcoin mining operation in Cheyenne, begins clearing out following an executive order from President Joe Biden. The order mandates the shutdown and sell-off of the MineOne facility, citing national security risks due to its proximity to F.E. Warren Air Force Base, home to the Minutemen III Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, according to Cowboystatedaily.

Last week, Biden’s directive required MineOne Partners Limited and its affiliates to cease operations, remove all equipment, and transfer ownership to an approved buyer within 120 days. Large trucks and storage pods are already on-site, preparing for the dismantling process. This decision comes as a response to credible evidence suggesting potential threats to national security.

Despite supporting Biden’s order, Wyoming legislators emphasize their continued support for the cryptocurrency industry. State Senator Chris Rothfuss, co-chair of the Wyoming Legislature’s Select Committee on Blockchain, Financial Technology and Digital Technology, reassured that Wyoming remains open to legitimate Bitcoin mining operations. He stated that Wyoming has worked hard to create a welcoming environment for crypto businesses, especially since China’s 2021 cryptocurrency mining ban.

Representative Cyrus Western echoed Rothfuss’s sentiments but stressed the importance of monitoring investments from countries with differing values. He believes Biden’s action was necessary to eliminate bad actors while encouraging law-abiding crypto companies to invest in Wyoming.

MineOne’s failure to notify the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) about its 2022 property purchase near the air force base triggered the federal intervention. Rothfuss emphasized the importance of compliance with federal regulations to avoid similar situations in the future.

CleanSpark, a Las Vegas-based cryptocurrency company, is reportedly in the process of acquiring the MineOne property. CEO Zach Bradford expressed confidence in finalizing the purchase and integrating the Wyoming sites into CleanSpark’s operations. Bradford noted that the sale is under CFIUS review, and he anticipates approval within the next two weeks.

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