On the 20th of April, 2022, Jared Huffman led 24 other legislators in sending a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency in New York. The letter urged the EPA to investigate the effects of Bitcoin mining on the environment.
According to Jared and his crew, Bitcoin mining has severe ecological impacts: pollution and the increase in the release of greenhouse gases. The lawmakers urged the EPA to monitor the crypto industry closely and implement regulations that will curb the mining of cryptocurrencies.
Bitcoin miners in New York have refuted these claims, stating that the environmental effect of Bitcoin mining is not as severe as the protagonists have assumed it to be.
Bitcoin miners and maximalists believe that the energy consumed by mining devices is similar to that consumed at data centers owned by Amazon, Microsoft, and other similar organizations.
Darin Feinstein, the co-founder of CoreScientific, a crypto mining operator, stated, “The pollution comes from the energy generation source, and all data centers buy electricity off-site, upstream. It would be very unusual for the EPA to regulate the kind of computation occurring within a data center. That’s outside of their remit.”
According to Darin, it is beyond the business of the EPA to care about what data centers use their energy for.
In addition to the energy consumption concern, the legislators accused Bitcoin miners of wasting electronic devices and hardware. A claim was made that Bitcoin alone produces 30,700 tons of hardware waste every year. This vast volume results from mining devices quickly becoming obsolete in the industry.
Jack Dorsey, Michael Saylor, and other Bitcoin maximalists wrote a letter to the EPA to counter this claim. In the letter, the estimated value of annual waste was refuted, and the Bitcoin holders claimed that hardware devices used for mining Bitcoin last a lot longer than 1.3 years.
Other Bitcoin miners in New York staged a protest against the possible banning of Bitcoin in the city. The rally was held on Monday at the Capitol building in Albany. The EPA has yet to decide on Bitcoin and other proof-of-work-based cryptocurrencies.