Shares of Sphere 3D (NASDAQ:ANY) are surging this morning as the company made a move toward enabling its recently announced merger partner, Gryphon Digital Mining, to become the first carbon-negative crypto miner. ANY stock was up 15% at the open after yesterday’s double-digit gain.
The two companies earlier this week announced they would merge, bringing together Sphere 3D’s IT brands to bear on Gryphon’s mission to mine Bitcoin (CCC:BTC-USD) using renewable energy. The combined entity would develop operations with sustainability and ESG ideals in mind.
The firms will purchase a combined 250,000 Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) that will not only support ESG commitments in achieving net-zero emissions for each company, but will allow Gryphon to become the first carbon-negative crypto miner.
The purchase is conditional on each buyer — 125,000 CERs apiece — receiving verification for their renewable energy facility under the United Nation’s Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) protocols. According to their joint announcement, that process is anticipated to be completed by the fourth quarter of 2021.
Energy Consumption Proving to Be Bitcoin’s Achilles Heel
Bitcoin’s recent price rises have turned it into an incredibly energy-intensive coin. Its miners now consume more power than the entire country of Argentina — most of it powered by coal-fired plants in just three northern Chinese provinces.
Bitcoin miners create 37 megatons of CO2, equivalent to New Zealand’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.
“Bitcoin already uses a good amount of renewable energy and a majority of miners have access to renewable energy sources. As political and environmental pressures mount, miners may shift towards using even more renewable energy,” CoinDesk.com research associate George Kaloudis wrote in April.
The two merger partners want to be the leaders in that “even more” renewable energy. Sphere 3D specializes in containerization, virtualization and data management solutions. The merged company will focus on expanding Gryphon’s digital mining operations.
The merger is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021 with shares to be issued in the merger being approved for listing on Nasdaq.
On the date of publication, Robert Lakin did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
InvestorPlace contributor Robert Lakin is a veteran financial writer and editor, including previous stints with Bloomberg News and as a buyside equity research editor. His Substack newsletter, TLV Strategist, covers the Israel business scene.