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The US Congress is concerned about the impact of blockchain mining on the environment and is set to hold a hearing on the matter this month, according to a new report.
Over the past few months, the United States has become the world’s largest hub for cryptocurrency mining. The US accounts for nearly 40% of the world’s BTC hashrate, more than double the share of Kazakhstan in second place, with Russia and Canada following.
The rise in the number of miners in the United States has been accompanied by some opposition, whether from members of Congress such as Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Several dozen environmental groups that have written letters of protest to Congress, or thousands of residents who even took to the streets to protest.
According to a news outlet about digital currency, the US Congress is about to step in. In its report, the publication claims that a subcommittee of Congress is preparing a hearing, which will consider the impact of mining digital currencies on the environment.
The report claims that a hearing could take place as early as this month, citing three anonymous sources with knowledge of the matter. The events will be hosted by the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Oversight and Investigation Subcommittee and will invite some of the leading stakeholders in the blockchain rewards mining sector. The list of interested parties to be invited has not yet been disclosed.
The latest concerns come at a time when governments around the world are expressing concerns about the power consumption of blockchain miners. Some countries, such as Iran and Kosovo, have been forced to deny power to miners in winter or during periods of low power supply. In Kazakhstan, BTC miners had to face a new threat after a five-day internet shutdown following fatal protests.
Sources noted that New York State was the most worrying member of the subcommittee. It has become one of the largest mining centers in the United States, and some of the largest mining companies have set up operations in the state.
According to a New York Times report, miners have converted abandoned factories to create farms. The report claims that some miners have used coal plants for their operations, leaving traces of environmental destruction in their wake.
The miners have been in conflict with the locals in New York for some time. In upstate New York, residents have taken to the streets to protest the mining of BTC, which they say is destroying the local lake and raising its temperature.
“The lake is so warm that it feels like you are in a hot bath,” said one of the local residents, whose house is located near the reservoir.
And not only local residents are protesting against cryptocurrency miners. Last year, more than 70 environmental and economic groups wrote to Congress protesting the miners.
“As Congress reviews cryptocurrency legislation, we urge you to consider the impact that Proof of Work mining has on climate, clean water and the environment,” they said in their letter to Congress.
Some US senators have also picked up the outrage and are protesting against the rise of miners. In December 2021, Senator Warren wrote a letter to Jeffrey Keirt, CEO of BTC mining company Greenidge Generation, asking about the company’s environmental impact. Greenidge co-owns a BTC farm near New York’s Seneca Lake, which was the source of several protests last year.
Kirt said his company was operating under federal and state environmental permits, rejecting the protests and Senator Warren’s letter. He claims that his company also contributes to the development of the local economy by creating jobs.
While the energy debate continues, Bitcoin SV is at the forefront of energy efficiency, with MNP’s November report claiming to be far ahead of BTC and BCH. MNP, which is one of Canada’s largest professional accounting and business consulting firms, has allocated BSV’s unlimited transaction processing capabilities.
“As long as the size or number of transactions on the BSV network exceeds the limits of other protocols, BSV is the most efficient in this group,” MNP noted in its report, “Finding More Efficient Bitcoin.”
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