Moratorium on energy-intensive cryptocurrency mining passes first hurdle in New York

ITHACA, N.Y. — Legislation that would implement a state-wide moratorium on energy intensive forms of cryptocurrency mining passed the New York Assembly on Tuesday, stoking the ambitions of environmental activists alongside the scorn of crypto-boosters.

The bill is a more targeted version of one that stalled in the assembly during last year’s legislative session. The current one, which now has to pass the state senate, would stop new proof-of-work (POW) cryptocurrency mining operations from being allowed to set up shop in power plants across New York State, and prevent the renewal of permits for power plants that are conducting proof-of-work cryptocurrency mining.

The bill is sponsored by Ithaca Assemblymember Anna Kelles (D-125) who has been the political face of a grassroots effort, largely pushed by Seneca Lake Guardian, to raise awareness around the greenhouse gas emissions that can result from cryptocurrency that uses POW as an authentication method to validate blockchain transactions, namely bitcoin, the most valuable and popular cryptocurrency. 

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