A group of U.S. Congress members sent a letter to the country’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) explaining that Bitcoin’s Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining mechanism benefits the environment despite opposing beliefs.
Concerns over the environmental effects caused by PoW mining have been a main priority for critics of the industry. Recently, the New York State Senate favored to slow expansion of PoW mining within the state and the letter is a means to avoid further restrictions in other areas of the country.
14 members of the U.S. Congress are now urging the EPA to conduct a comprehensive analysis to holistically understand the potential environmental effects of Bitcoin mining.
In Dennis Porter's Tweet thread, the letter shows that the co-signers include Senator Cynthia Lummis along with the 13 other senators and representatives.
According to the letter, “the United States is the global leader in financial services and technology innovation. At a time of rapid technological change, we must affirm our commitment to responsible innovation to ensure future generations of Americans continue to enjoy prosperity and opportunity.”
The letter goes on to explain some of the benefits of Bitcoin mining for the environment. Firstly, a significant percentage of Bitcoin miners’ energy use is renewable energy. Many miners use other power sources like natural gas in order to reduce methane emissions.
“As you know, a substantial portion of digital asset miners’ energy use is based on renewable sources. Additionally, many miners use other power sources, like natural gas, that may otherwise go unused.”
Additionally, the letter explains that Bitcoin mining has a significant stabilizing effect on energy grids along with the economic benefits for consumers and miners. The letter states that the U.S. must promote responsible innovation so that the country may compete in a globalized economic system.
The letter cited Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen who said that regulation needs to be “tech neutral” and that favoring Proof-of-Stake over Proof-of-Work can stifle innovation within the U.S. and have the country fall behind economically in comparison to their international counterparts.