And now for something completely different: Electric utilities can benefit from bitcoins. This Barron's article describes how the modified computers that create and track the virtual currency known as Bitcoins use a ton of electricity -- up to $7,000 to "mine" a single Bitcoin. Bitcoin mining now accounts for 0.2 percent of the world's electricity use, a figure that could increase to 0.6 percent, which is comparable to amount of energy used in Argentina.
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