A new bill in the US state, New York, prohibits the mining of Bitcoin for environmental reasons. The bill passed by Senator Kevin S. Parker lifts the moratorium only on mining facilities that “do not adversely affect New York carbon offset benchmarks.”
It is noted that the new law is in its early stages as it is still being drafted by the competent environmental committee of the Senate. If approved, it will enable state inspectors to assess the impact of mining facilities on water quality, air quality, carbon emissions and nature in general.
Miners will only be allowed to use the internet after completing an environmental impact statement.
Bitcoin mining on the environment
Critics of Bitcoin consider the cryptocurrency “dirty”, for the simple reason that the process of creating them, the so-called mining, consumes a huge amount of energy from computers.
Research from the University of Cambridge has shown that the Bitcoin network uses more than 121 TWh per year, a number that would rank it among the top 30 electricity consumers in the world, if it were a country.
A similar study was conducted in 2018 by the Cincinnati Oak Ring Science Institute, published in the journal Nature Sustainability, which showed that producing a one-dollar cryptocurrency requires an average energy of 17 megajoules for Bitcoin, seven megajoules for Ethereum and seven megajoules for Litecoin.
On the other hand, to extract copper worth one dollar, the energy cost is only 4 megajoules, for gold 5 megajoules and for platinum 7 megajoules. Aluminium is by far much more energy consuming, with 122 megajoules.