New York State assembly passes a bill to ban crypto mining if they don’t switch to green energy

  • The bill puts a two-year ban on crypto mining operations that use carbon-based fuel to mine PoW cryptocurrencies.
  • The bill has received support from lawmakers with 95 voting in favor while 52 voted against.

On Tuesday, April 26, the New York State Assembly passed a bill to put an outright two-year ban on all Proof-of-Work (PoW) crypto mining facilities. This is a direct attack on crypto miners who are using carbon-based fuel to power their operations.

Environmental groups have welcomed this bill stating that such measures won’t remove the roadblocks for New York to meet its carbon emission goals. Speaking on this matter, John Olsen, the New York state lead at crypto lobbyist Blockchain Association said:

The intention of the bill is to prevent new mining operations that would draw power from fossil fuel generation, even if it’s partial. The impact, though, is really just economic in the sense that good paying jobs are going to be going to other states, and mining operations that would face less regulatory scrutiny, in terms of environmental impact, would be setting up shop [in another state.]

New York state representative Anna Kelles has sponsored the latest bill. Apart from putting a two-year ban on new crypto mining operations, Kelles said that the proposed bill shall prevent the renewal of permits to existing PoW crypto miners who are using carbon-sourced energy.

She further added:

My bill is not a ban on crypto. It’s not even a ban on mining. It would not restrict the ability to buy, sell, invest, or use crypto in New York State. This bill only pertains to large-scale cryptomining in power plants that use fossil-fuel based energy sources behind the meter.

Crypto mining and environmental concerns

The environmental concerns surrounding crypto mining activities have been there for a while. This was precisely the reason that china announced an outright ban on crypto mining last year in May 2021. However, the industry has witnessed a major turnaround toward the use of green energy.

Furthermore, the Bitcoin mining companies came together to form a Bitcoin Mining Council (BMC). The goal of BMC is to promote the use of sustainable energy resources for Bitcoin mining activities. On Monday, April 25, the organization published a report suggesting the improvements made by the Bitcoin mining industry.

The Bitcoin Mining Council also conducted a survey recently which shows that the participants are currently using electricity with a 64.6 percent sustainable power mix. The survey also notes that the sustainable electricity mix of the global mining industry has surged 59 percent year over year. Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy and a member of BMC said:

We observed a 63% year-on-year increase in efficiency due to advances in semiconductor technology, the rapid expansion of North American mining, the China Exodus, and the worldwide adoption of sustainable energy and modern bitcoin mining techniques.

The crypto mining ban bill from Anna Kelles has gathered enough support from lawmakers. 95 voted in favor while 52 voted against.