Last updated on January 2nd, 2018 at 12:00 am
Liberté Mining has announced the launch of a new cloud mining service powered entirely by 100% renewable hydropower built on the Counterparty protocol.
The Canadian company is operated by a team of experienced miners who use the P2Pool mining network to help mitigate the chance of a 51% attack on the Bitcoin network. Now, they are bringing the ability for anyone to purchase cloud mining assets via Counterparty’s truly decentralized and transparent system.
By issuing assets via the Counterparty protocol, they allow those assets to be traded freely on Couterparty’s real time decentralized exchange. Counterparty is an innovative platform for peer-to-peer markets and financial instruments. Unlike Wall Street and other centralized financial institutions, Counterparty provides open, secure financial tools and markets that do not require a trusted third party or middleman to use.
The platform is built on top of Bitcoin, and extends the functionality of the Bitcoin network in new and unprecedented ways. With Counterparty, anyone with an Internet connection gains access to financial instruments that were previously cost prohibitive or not available at all.
The cloud mining service assets can be traded, but unlike competing services it is done instantly via a decentralized exchange that is operated by the Counterparty network itself. The unique nature of this resource makes it unlike any other available at this time.
Liberté Mining could potentially become the industry leader in “green” mining. While competitors have touted operations that are clean and energy efficient, Liberté Mining is the first operation to use 100% hydropower. Their data center is powered using nearly all completely renewable, emission free, clean energy sources for the mining operations.
“A leading mining pool consumed 159,519,788KW/H of power in the first year of operations. Imagine if that power had been clean, renewable energy such as that being used by Liberté Mining. Hydropower offers the distinct advantage that it emits no greenhouse gases. We use fully renewable water instead of limited fossil fuels which allows for lower energy costs for the Liberté Mining operation.”
-Ryan Scott, CEO, Liberté Mining
Liberté Mining is one of the most transparent mining pools in existence. The use of Counterparty shows all of the assets sold and traded allowing anyone to verify operator integrity. With P2Pool showing the mining operation statistics and the clearly published contact information, purchasers can be confident in their investment. I found this idea of a fully end-to-end transparency to be a refreshing change from what we’ve seen recently with other cloud mining operations.
P2Pool is a decentralized Bitcoin mining pool that works by creating a peer-to-peer network of miner nodes.
P2Pool shares form a “sharechain” with each share referencing the previous share’s hash. Each share contains a standard Bitcoin block header, some P2Pool-specific data that is used to compute the generation transaction (total subsidy, payout script of this share, a nonce, the previous share’s hash, and the current target for shares), and a Merkle branch linking that generation transaction to the block header’s Merkle hash.
The chain continuously regulates its target to keep generation around one share every thirty seconds, just as Bitcoin regulates it to generate one block every ten minutes. This means that finding shares becomes more difficult (resulting in higher variance) the more people mine on P2Pool, though large miners have the option to raise their difficulty, and so reduce the impact of their mining on P2Pool’s minimum difficulty.
Unlike Bitcoin, nodes do not know the entire chain – instead they only hold the last 8640 shares (the last 3 day’s worth). In order to prevent an attacker from working on a chain in secret and then releasing it, overriding the existing chain, chains are judged by how much work they have since a point in the past. To ascertain that the work has been done since that point, nodes look at the Bitcoin blocks that the shares reference, establishing a provable timestamp.
Decentralized payout pooling solves the problem of centralized mining pools degrading the decentralization of Bitcoin and avoids the risk of hard to detect theft by pool operators. It is due to this setup that those purchasing in to Liberté Mining can FULLY know that the mining hardware is actually running and see the results and know that the company is not skimming off the top as has been alleged with other operations.
Ryan and his partners, Leo and Nick, are all well-known and respected bitcoin community members. As active and lifetime members of the Bitcoin Foundation and Bitcoin Alliance of Canada, the team share their passion for giving back to the community in many ways. All three are also involved in facilitating local bitcoin meetups. Leo and Nick also operate their own bitcoin ATM companies known as BitSent and BitTeller. Ryan also operates an online jewellery company called Crypto Jeweler.
The company announced today they would be planting a tree for every asset sold to help offset the carbon emissions generated through other mining operations.
Liberté Mining has tapped upon the vast resources of The Carbon Farmer to help them with the tree planting in Canada to help offset the emissions. The Carbon Farmer is a unique organization planting trees on behalf of individuals, organizations, and businesses looking to help fight carbon emissions around the world.
Liberté Mining does all mining in a fee free P2Pool which also results in higher profits for the holders of the Liberté Mining assets.
I sat down with Ryan from Liberté Mining to pick his brain a bit more regarding the company and cloud mining in general.
Leo: You guys are experienced miners that seem to be operating some successful operations currently so why are you launching a new offering?
Ryan: We are launching our new mining company to address a few concerns we see emerging in the crypto mining space. First off is centralization of the network with the emergence of pools controlling substantial hashing power. We see this as a grave threat to the legitimacy of Bitcoin and something that has to be avoided at all costs. A 51 percent attack or even the possibility it could happen at any time has the potential to do damage to the reputation of Bitcoin. For growth in adoption and investment, trust is an crucial component. Continued threat of an attack has the capacity to severely stunt Bitcoins growth. We plan to mitigate centralization as much as possible with the open and transparent use of P2Pool.
Another aspect that is becoming increasingly difficult to justify is the environmental impact that Bitcoin has created with its mining practices. The impact of the network is seen more clearly when put into real world figures.
Currently with the network sitting around 200 PH the environmental impact of the power needed is in the order of magnitude of about 192,000 gasoline cars and its growing every day. This needs to be reduced, for what is the sense of building a new digital economy on the archaic and self destructive foundation of the past.
We know this is not going to be changed over night but we have to give the average miner the chance to mine in a way that is ecologically responsible even though they may not have access to renewable clean energy. We are also taking this a step further by partnering with a Canadian carbon offset company called Carbon Farmer.
We will be planting a tree for every TeraHash sold through Liberté Mining. Not only are we offering miners the opportunity to do their part by mining in a environmentally responsible way but we are giving them the chance to help offset the damage being done to the planet by miners using electricity that is created using fossil fuels.
Leo: What prompted you to use Counterparty to issue assets for Liberte?
Ryan: We have always been intrigued by decentralized technologies. I had been following the development of a number of projects allowing you to issue assets or user defined tokens. We felt Counterparty offered to most efficient way to issue a Bitcoin mining asset, allowing us to make mining payouts directly to the asset owners Counterparty wallet address. It also gives us access to a secure trading platform for clients to trading their asset in the open markets. Asset ownership utilizes the Bitcoin network itself, allowing anyone to verify our asset listing against our mining operation stats on P2Pool. Counterparty helps protects our clients from the threat of an attack, stealing their funds/assets through a centralized server we control. This gives total asset control and ownership to the client.
Leo: What are the biggest challenges you have faced in setting up operations for Liberte?
Ryan: Our biggest challenge has always been total power capacity. Things are changing fast in the Bitcoin mining space and hardware is now reaching power densities never seen before in a standard data centre. Finding a low cost hosting solution with high power density per server rack was not an easy task. As we quickly discovered the current data centers are not designed with Bitcoin in mind. This was why we decided to build our own facility that we controlled.
Leo: Do you ever have plans of building your own devices?
Ryan: We will do what is best for our clients. We have had some experience purchasing chips for fabrication purposes, I commend anyone in the manufacturing sector as its not any easy task.
We will continue to build strong relationships with our current suppliers as we focus on our strengths. Things can change quickly in the Bitcoin space and we are always open to the idea as we grow. I would prefer to invest into R&D for renewable free energy sources as this would provide a larger benefit to the world as a whole.
I think open sourcing the design would be the first step to making sure it reached the masses and wasn’t shutdown like so many in the past. Taking a page out of Bitcoins books here.
Leo: Are you deploying a range of different devices from different ASIC companies?
Ryan: Yes, we are deploying multiple types of hardware from reputable manufactures.
This allows our business model to stay as flexible as possible. We have met a lot of great people in the hardware manufacturing sector and those relationships are ones we hold dear and like to foster. Ultimately it comes down to the math. Our main responsibility is to the miners by trying as hard as possible to increase efficiency and keep costs low.
Leo: What is going to set you apart from very large venture backed operations?
Ryan: We believe strongly that our operation stands out as the most environmentally friendly Bitcoin mining operation to date. Our hope is to build a better future for everyone and that starts by fixing the mistakes of the past. We also offer the confidence to investors that we are a registered Canadian business.
Leo: Are you ever going to seek venture funding to expand your operations?
Ryan: Our team is always looking for investors that have similar values as our own. We are currently in the process of seeking venture funding from two separate sources. If anyone is interested in getting involved we are always open to discussions.
Leo: KNC Miner and others are starting to get in the cloud mining space. How do you feel about this?
Ryan: We welcome all competition into the space because at heart we are the average miner looking for the best setup for mining.
We believe that in a more competitive space there will be less room for individuals looking to deploy scam scenarios to take miners hard earned Bitcoin. One of our founding principals is to be as open and transparent as possible. We publish videos of our mine to show people that we are a tangible company with a facility and actual hardware, not just another fly by night set up that is going to run off with your coin.
Our company strives to do the things we wish we had seen in other operations when we started mining. The feeling of “This can be done better” is the reason we started Liberté Mining and the reason we feel that we will stay relevant in this industry for some time to come.
Leo: We’ve seen a lot of scams recently including Lunamine that was really well executed and even Gavin Andresen questioning mining operations. How hard is it going to be to differentiate your operations from those of the bad players?
Ryan: I think that’s were tangibility and customer engagement come in. In this world of trust-less crypto currency ironically there still needs to be a level of trust. We want to engage the community and show them that we are miners just like them and if they have an issue they can give us a call.
If they want to see our site we do have videos and we plan on making more. We want people to be as excited about mining as we are while remaining environmentally friendly. We also find it rather fishy when other operations say “no” to videos and never come out and say who they are. It makes people wonder and rightfully so, miners have a right to see the facility and know the operations are legitimate. We think it’s time that miners stand up and force company’s to play by the rules.
What public gold mining company tells their customers they can’t even see a photo of their operation? If that doesn’t make you feel freaked out I don’t know what will.
People say this is the wild west of Bitcoin but we believe the only wilderness we want to see in Bitcoin is one that isn’t effected by the burning of fossil fuels to support the network.
Liberté Mining is one of the more compelling concepts to enter the cloud mining space to date with such a strong focus on transparent, decentralized, and energy conscious efforts.
Having personally seen the videos of equipment, spoken with the founders and been excited myself about the idea of using Counterparty for the mining assets this is one of the first cloud mining operations that I’ve been excited about in a while.