New York is concerned about bitcoin mining. So much, in fact, that a new Senate bill is looking to shut down all mining operations for approximately three years until the state can assess the damage done to the environment through mining.
New York Has Taken a Stance Against BTC Mining
While it is easy to point the finger at New York right now and accuse it being closed minded, the fact is that this is something that appears to be worrying the entire world, especially over the past few months as bitcoin’s price has shot into meteoric territory. Bitcoin mining appears to grow in expenses whenever bitcoin’s price expands to such a degree. With the world’s number one digital currency by market cap hitting the $60,000 mark or more on a few separate occasions, one can assume just how much energy is being used to extract new coins.
We continue to see a wide array of reports condemning bitcoin and crypto mining activity. Some claim that crypto mining requires more energy than what is needed to power countries such as Iceland and Argentina, while others say the carbon footprint caused by bitcoin mining is equivalent to the carbon footprint of Sin City in Nevada.
Now, New York appears to be joining the “fear circle,” as this new bill – if passed – would allegedly close all bitcoin mining operations located within the Big Apple so that regulators can see what effects it has on the atmosphere. As it stands, upstate New York is widely popular amongst bitcoin miners given that energy costs are quite low. The bill reads as follows:
Cryptocurrency mining threatens not only New York’s climate goals under the CLCPA, but also global energy policy such as the Paris Agreement. There shall be a three-year moratorium on the operation of cryptocurrency mining centers in the state, including, but not limited to, cryptocurrency mining centers located in converted fossil fuel power plants.
Over this period of shutdown, New York lawmakers would take the time to study how bitcoin mining affects the state’s water supply and wildlife. In addition, they would also look at how the state’s air was affected. It is not entirely clear which or how many greenhouse gases are emitted or exacerbated by bitcoin mining, and regulators want to have a clear idea before they give the go-ahead on future projects.
Too Much Energy Usage?
The bill continues its “anti-bitcoin status” by mentioning the following:
A single cryptocurrency transaction uses the same amount of energy that an average American household uses in one month, with an estimated level of global energy usage equivalent to that of the country of Sweden.
Not everyone is convinced, however, that bitcoin mining is as hazardous as past reports claim. Coin Shares, for example, issued its own report two years ago claiming that nearly 75 percent of all bitcoin-based energy was “carbon neutral.”