New York imposes a ban on proof-of-work Bitcoin mining
The state of New York has approved a controversial ban on proof-of-work mining. The bill will impose a ban on any new Bitcoin mining activities in the state. Under this bill, New York will be in the same league as China, which also banned Bitcoin mining last year.
New York bans PoW crypto mining
The ban on proof of work crypto mining in New York was passed by the state assembly in April this year. The bill plans to ban new mining operations within the state over the next two years.
If the bill is approved, it will go to the governor’s office, and once it is signed into law, it will make New York the first state in the US to ban cryptocurrency mining activities. The voting led to several senators that were previously undecided announcing that they were in favor of the ban.
The PoW consensus is mainly used by Bitcoin miners, and it is ranked as the safest and most decentralized method of mining. However, PoW has been controversial because it needs a high amount of energy to conduct transactions.
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The bill will prohibit Bitcoin mining activities in the state and refuse the renewal of mining licenses to those miners that were already operating in the state. PoW mining activities in the state will operate if they adopt 100% renewable energy.
The intense energy consumption of the Bitcoin mining process has created debate among global policymakers. The proof-of-stake consensus, which is less energy-0intensive, has been advocated for. The co-founder of Ripple, Chris Larsen, has campaigned to change Bitcoin’s code to PoS.
Bitcoin mining is focused on renewable sources
Policymakers have primarily focused on the energy-intensive Bitcoin mining process but have failed to note that the most energy came from renewable sources. In New York, 50% of energy is generated from renewable sources.
Criticism of PoW mining heightened towards the end of last year as the market peaked at notable highs. The CEO of MicroStrategy wrote a report saying that the energy consumed from Bitcoin mining was misrepresented because 60% of the energy used by Bitcoin miners was derived from renewable sources.
The European parliament had previously proposed a PoW ban but later rescinded the decision. Other states could follow suit and impose similar bans, threatening the US position as the world’s largest Bitcoin miner by hash rate.
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