Some 70% of mining is in China where an outbreak has led to 80% of the people there staying indoors according to a bitcoin miner in China.
Bitcoin mining farms however are not affected says a representative from Hash in the Box, a cloud miner, despite nearly all regions in China that have mining clusters seeing numerous infections.
According to a Reuters report last month, the most significant cryptocurrency mining hubs are in Yunnan, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and the Sichuan provinces.
Only Mongolia has no confirmed cases so far. Sichuan has 80. Yunnan has 26. Xinjiang has 5.
These cases however tend to be in cities or in urban areas. “In Sichuan, the farms are deep in the mountains, very safe,” says the Chinese miner who wants to go by the name of Mike. “The 80 cases are in the city.”
Mike’s claim is supported by the current bitcoin hashrate which shows the usual variation in an ever rising direction with all appearing normal.
He was further corroborated by a number of other miners based in China who say that no industrial mining factories are affected.
“Viruses don’t infect machines,” said one. A straight “no” was the answer by someone else to our question of whether any mining factories are closing because of the human virus.
“Farms are near Xinjiang and Neimeng,” said a third, with the outbreak concentrated in Wuhan which is kind of in the middle of China.
These locations are similar to an entire US state, or an entire EU country, with tens of millions of people in each and a relatively large land area.
So while the outbreak is in China and each region there is affected far more than locations outside of China, the number of infections is significantly lower outside of Wuhan.
In addition, “farms are usually far away from cities,” says Mike. Remote regions usually are preferred because hydraulic power is more abundant and there’s less demand for electricity. So making it very cheap.
The virus is however very new, so it isn’t clear how it might develop or how it might spread, but Chinese authorities have taken drastic measures to contain it.
So it appears quite unlikely mining factories will be affected because if it gets to these remote regions, then we’d have far more to worry about than the difficulty adjustment.
Bitcoin’s algorithm, as you might now, automatically increases or decreases the amount of hash required to mine a bitcoin depending on how much hashpower is currently mining it.
So even if all the industrial mining farms in China were to shut down, the remaining 30% of miners would become 100% as the algorithm adjusts.
Meaning bitcoin would keep running as it does now, with blocks processed every ten minutes as normal. Higher hash however means higher security and more strong supporters of the network, so the more virus-free mining farms there are, the better.