Authorities of Chinese city Bayan Nur issued a warning on Sunday after a reported case of bubonic plague. The city is located in the autonomous region Inner Mongolia – one of the world’s most attractive regions for Bitcoin miners.
Germ Behind Bubonic Plague Killed a Third of Europe’s Population
Bayan Nur’s health committee issued a third-level alert, which is the second-lowest in a four-level system related to public health risks. The warning came after authorities confirmed one case of bubonic plague – a disease caused by Yersinia pestis. If it doesn’t tell you anything, Yersinia pestis is the same bacterium that caused the “Black Death” in Europe’s greatest outbreak in the 14th century, which killed an estimated 50 million people or a third of the continent’s population at the time.
The same disease killed about 12 million globally in another outbreak in the 19th century.
The question is: should Bitcoin investors worry about a potential stricter lockdown that would come on top of coronavirus worries? Inner Mongolia is one of the world’s most active regions when it comes to Bitcoin mining. The short answer is no, but this is something we should monitor.
The alert issued by Bayan Nur’s authorities bans the eating of animals that may carry the bacterium. It requires the public to report any suspected cases of fever or plague with no certain causes. The city warned of risks of human-to-human infection.
The warning comes several months after Inner Mongolia reported four cases of plague last November, including two pneumonic plague cases, which is even more dangerous. The disease may be spread mostly by rodents such as rats.
As for the patient, he or she is now under treatment and is in stable condition.
So Far, Bitcoin Mining Is Safe In China
Obviously, if mining plants suffer from some type of lockdown, the price of Bitcoin will be under pressure. However, at the moment, there is no significant threat to consider. Even the coronavirus itself couldn’t seriously hinder miners in Inner Mongolia and other regions in China. Thus, the plague should not be of serious concern to Bitcoin investors as of today.
Moreover, the current plague is treatable with antibiotics, unlike the coronavirus, which has no official treatment plan.
Even without the plague, Bitcoin’s hash rate is gradually moving from China to Western countries like the US. At the end of last year, China accounted for about three-quarters of the total hash power. Last month, the figure dropped to about two-thirds, according to data from the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance (CCAF). Elsewhere, the US noted a surge of 78% for the same period.