The Russian government says Russian provinces are free to make crypto miners pay higher electricity bills. In an official decree, the government explained that it had given local governors the power to “independently determine maximum electricity consumption” and that citizens could use electricity at “preferential” residential rates. Anyone who exceeds this maximum capacity limit will be forced to pay a higher rate, which can be determined by the region and the utility itself.
The system is not entirely new, having previously been pioneered in Crimea. In its largest city, Sevastopol, residents are capped at 150 kWh per month for energy use at lower residential rates. The Department of Energy assured that the measure was not a means to drive up energy bills, but was merely aimed at “combatting inappropriate energy consumption.” Regions have also been given the power to “set different energy bills for certain groups of people,” in other words, they can increase electricity bills for people identified by electricity providers as crypto miners.