Kosovo bans cryptocurrency mining after blackouts:
The government says security services will identify and clamp down on sources of cryptocurrency mining.
The mining is energy intensive and involves verifying digital transactions to get cryptocurrencies as a reward.
While all of Europe faces sharp price rises, Kosovo is enforcing rolling blackouts amid an electricity shortage.
The Balkan state's largest coal-fired power plant was shut down last month over a technical issue, forcing the government to import electricity at high prices.
A 60-day state of emergency, declared in December, gave the government powers to allocate more money for energy imports and impose stricter restrictions on power usage.
The blackouts have sparked protests and calls for the resignation of Economy Minister Artane Rizvanolli.
Energy prices are skyrocketing across Europe for various reasons, including low supplies from Russia and high demand for natural gas as economies recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.
The spike has been fuelled by geopolitical tensions with Russia, which supplies one third of Europe's gas. Russia has rejected European accusations that it has limited gas deliveries while tensions are raised
(Score: 4, Interesting) by sorokin on Sunday January 09 2022, @01:17AM (1 child)
Disclaimer: Russian here. Please note that having Russian ethnicity or nationality doesn't mean that the person support all decisions of Russian government or actions of Russian companies, but in this specific case I believe the allegation are just wrong and I have to speak up.
At first it looks like the phrasing here implies that Russia somehow limited gas deliveries, but they are not specific here. I believe the lack of details here is intentional and these phrases are just FUD.
The Gazprom (the largest natural gas producer in Russia, publicly traded company, 38,3% of shares owned by government) made a statement on this. They claim that for interval from 1st of January to 15th of November the deliveries of natural gas increased in 2021 by 8.3% compared to the same interval of 2020. If we compare this to the previous years it is still slightly lower than 2019, but higher that 2016. I believe this just disproves "low supplies from Russia" part of the quote. It is just wrong. Also in  Gasprom representative claims that Gasprom fulfilled all contracts it had in this year and they are happy to supply more. He also noted that France and Germany taken all what they ordered and don't order more. So the lack of deliveries is related to the lack of new orders.
The second part "Russia has rejected European accusations that it has limited gas deliveries" is tricky. Consider this sentence: "Zuckerberg rejected accusations of being a pedophile". Technically both sentences are true: they do rejected the accusations, but the implications of the phrases are that these accusations have some ground. So technically true this phrase is misleading and I believe it is intentionally so.
 https://www.vedomosti.ru/economics/news/2021/11/15/895915-rost-postavok [vedomosti.ru]
 http://www.gazpromexport.ru/statistics/ [gazpromexport.ru]
 https://www.rbc.ru/business/25/12/2021/61c761dc9a7947d38103c78c [www.rbc.ru]
(Score: 2) by owl on Sunday January 09 2022, @03:10AM
They are probably using the politician definition of a "budget cut" here to spin the narrative of "low supplies". Yes, real supply increased by 8.3% -- but the receiving end was expecting an increase of 16.6%, so the receiving end is being short-supplied by 8.3%.
You can watch this all the time in political debates on budget items. Department X received 20M last year. Department X asked for 200M this year. Department X received an actual 100M this year. Opponents cry "politician X cut the budget of Department X by 100M", when in fact Department X is 80M richer than they were last year.