The Bitcoin Mining Council is today hitting back at reports describing Bitcoin mining as an energy guzzling industry. The group of 44 mining companies representing 50% of the global network has released its Q1 2022 Global Bitcoin Mining Data Review this week which shows that Bitcoin mining, while recording an increased mining hashrate (up 23% YoY), has also driven its energy usage down (25% YoY) and, for the period under review, has used an inconsequential amount of global energy (16bps) while generating negligible carbon emissions (8bps). This, even as New York Senators proceed with plans to impose a three year crypto mining moratorium in the state. Let's discuss.
Global Bitcoin Mining Data Review
According to the report, total global energy generated for the period amounted to 154,750 TWh, with Bitcoin mining accounting for 0.16% of the energy consumed on the world's electric grid at 247 TWh. The report also revealed that global Bitcoin mining consumed just 0.085% of the world's CO² production, generating 0.03 BMt of the 34.8 BMt total estimated CO² generated globally.
Comparing global Bitcoin mining to the energy consumption of individual countries, the council argued that Bitcoin mining had the highest sustainable energy mix and consumed significantly less energy than other industries.
The report also noted that mining efficiency increased 63% YoY while its sustainable electricity mix increased 59%.
With continued improvements in mining efficiency, the Bitcoin Mining Council insists, "Bitcoin mining is guaranteed to be dramatically more energy efficient in the next eight years."
This report comes at the same time as New York Senators continue to push for a moratorium on the reactivation of fossil fuel power plants for crypto mining.
New York Bill Proposing Cryptocurrency Moratorium Advances
The New York bill, S6486D/A7389C, which is supported by environmentally lobby groups, was reviewed yesterday (April 25th) by the New York Assembly’s Ways and Means Committee, and is expected to progress to the New York Assembly floor for a vote by the full Assembly as early as Thursday.
According to Cointelegraph, the bill, "seeks to establish a two-year moratorium on cryptocurrency mining that utilizes a proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism. It would amend the existing environmental conservation law to comply with the 2019 Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which implies a 40% greenhouse gas emission reduction by 2030. As the co-sponsors of the bill believe, PoW mining stands in the way of reaching this goal. Hence, they propose a moratorium on mining permits issuance and renewal."
Cointelegraph noted however that there are clauses in the bill which seek to ensure that mining businesses "seeking to preserve the existing capacities already licensed by the state would not be subject to new restrictions". Further it notes that the moratorium specifically targets electric generating facilities that utilize a carbon-based fuel. It does not cover operations that use renewable energy.
The legislation has, of course, raised concern in the crypto mining community. Some have expressed concern that it could force the migration of crypto employees to friendlier states.
BeInCrypto quotes John Olsen, head of the New York state-focused arm of the Blockchain Association, describing the bill as, “A bit of a blow to an industry that is very much looking to be here in New York."
The bill's sponsor, New York State Representative, Dr. Anna Kelles defended the bill, however, maintaining that it was not a crypto ban. In a tweet, she stated, "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. The bill only pertains to large-scale cryptomining in power plants that use fossil-fuel based energy sources behind the meter."
And so, friends, let's chat for a bit. What are your thoughts on these developments? Personally, I think it's great to see the Bitcoin Mining Council pushing back against the carefully scripted narrative that paints Bitcoin mining as an energy guzzling industry, not climate friendly and consuming more electricity than entire countries. In this regard, I think it's important for the public to have the option for a balanced perspective, and therefore this report, in my view, is a step in the right direction, but I'd love to hear your views.
Well, guys, I'm off again in search of another story. Recently I read this report about Uniswap introducing address screening protocols to block addresses linked to illegal activities, preventing them from using its platform. Seems interesting, so I'm checking it out.
Until we meet again, please remember to be safe. Incidentally, as a quick side bar, did you get in on the Dogecoin action yesterday? Following news of Elon Musk's Twitter acquisition, Dogecoin surged more than 30%. I guess people were speculating that Dogecoin might somehow soon become a Twitter feature? I don't know. Be careful of FOMO, guys. I love Dogecoin, don't get me wrong, but I'm cautious about jumping onto any project purely because of hype.
Well, I'm truly gone this time. Please remember to be safe, my friends. We'll chat again soon. Arrivederci!