A bill was passed by the New York State Legislature that would prohibit fossil fuel power plants from being used to produce energy for miners of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. Governor Kathy Hochul’s office said Monday however that she hadn’t decided whether to sign it.
To mine cryptocurrency, you need a lot electricity. These systems compete to solve mathematical puzzles in order to validate blockchain transactions. The cryptocurrency is awarded to the first miner to solve the puzzle.
The bill was passed by the State Assembly in April, and then the Senate approved it late last week. On Monday, the governor’s office stated that she was still considering whether or not to sign the bill.
The governor stated that there was a balancing task involved in this situation. He made the statement Monday. We must balance the protection of the environment with the preservation of jobs in areas that are not populated by a lot of activity. And we must ensure that energy is properly managed.
This bill is part the state’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the state by 85% by 2050.
According to the bill, cryptocurrency mining operations “are an expanding industry within the State of New York” that “will greatly increase energy usage in the state.”
The bill would prohibit cryptocurrency mining from increasing greenhouse gases emissions by imposing a moratorium upon air permit renewal and issuance for electric generating facilities that use a carbon-based fuel. This is to prevent them from producing more energy for crytocurrency mining operations.