Welcoming Sweetwater Mining Co. to the Genesis Portfolio

Daniel Miyares
Genesis
Published in
3 min readSep 29, 2022

--

This year, Genesis and the Energy Institute partnered to launch UT Austin’s Smart Energy Call For Innovation (C4i) in collaboration with Affinity Engineering, Chevron, and Shell. Read more about our generational partnership:

Venture Partner: Grant Shaffer

Meet Xander Klein (University of Texas at Austin, Biomedical Engineering) and Chance Washburn (Southern Methodist University, Finance), childhood friends who grew up together in Los Angeles, California. At the start of high school, their interest in blockchain and cryptocurrencies accelerated, and not long after, the pair worked together as roustabouts in an oil field in California where they gained field experience in oil and gas and learned the basics of upstream oil production. By leveraging their interests in the crypto mining space with their background in oil and gas, Xander and Chance came up with the idea for Sweetwater Mining Co. in the summer of 2021.

The amount of greenhouse gasses released into the atmosphere every year has countries around the world concerned over the future of our planet and holding corporations accountable for reducing their emissions. Producers of oil and other non-renewable resources have pledged to cut back on their emissions, and many have net-zero pledges over the next few decades. However, in the process of extracting oil, a method of burning off natural gas called flaring is used to get rid of excess gas unfit for use. Every year, billions of cubic meters of natural gas are flared and vented into the atmosphere. This is equivalent to a quarter of the total amount of natural gas consumed in the United States annually. Taking advantage of this excess natural gas, Sweetwater Mining Co. utilizes excess emissions from petroleum production to mine Bitcoin.

Natural gas that is currently offloaded as waste is converted to electrical energy using a natural gas generator, which powers Bitcoin mining systems. This strategy provides a low-cost, environmentally superior path to accumulate cryptocurrency value and reduce the environmental impacts of methane waste. By using stranded natural gas as a primary energy source, Sweetwater can produce electricity at ultra-competitive rates. Because Bitcoin mining is an expensive and energy-intensive process, alternative solutions that are cheap and environmentally conscious have gained a lot of attention from the Crypto World.

Xander (left) and Chance (right) pictured with a fellow roughneck

Xander and Chance leveraged their experiences coupled with their passions in the crypto space to create a smart energy solution to turn waste into digital treasure. The Sweetwater team has been hard at work developing a strong network of professionals in the field, engaging in the blockchain community, and evaluating inquiries from different oil and gas companies interested in their offerings. Their systems can be designed for modularity (where additional capacity is achieved by adding duplicate system assemblies) or for large capacity (where one big system can support the capacity of 5 smaller modular systems. After thorough diligence and considerations of the team, their product, and the market potential, Genesis made a $25,000 investment in Sweetwater!

--

--