According to sources, the US Congress will convene a hearing to examine the environmental impacts of cryptocurrencies, with a focus on Bitcoin mining.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Oversight and Investigations subcommittee is drafting a list of witnesses to analyze the energy usage of cryptocurrencies that use the proof-of-work consensus technique, with a special focus on Bitcoin, according to sources.
The House will not be meeting with executives from the bitcoin industry for the first time. Six crypto executives were called to a hearing in December by the House Financial Services Committee to investigate crypto laws.
Sources have yet to reveal the date of the hearing or the list of witnesses who will be called to testify. They appear to be optimistic, though, that the hearing will take place as soon as possible, with analysts predicting a date in late January.
It’s worth noting that the United States is now the world’s top provider of Bitcoin hash rates, following a significant exodus of miners from Mainland China due to regulatory crackdowns.
According to sources, the committee’s worry has grown as a result of the events in New York. According to a report published by the New York Times, Bitcoin miners have taken over many abandoned industries and factories throughout the city in pursuit of cheap electricity and lax monitoring. Concerns have been expressed that these moves will likely increase greenhouse gas emissions, and the House has already received 70 letters to that effect from worried environmentalists.
Bitcoin has received a lot of bad press and setbacks as a result of environmental concerns regarding its proof-of-work consensus algorithm.
It was subjected to harsh restrictions in China last year. Bitcoin mining and even cryptocurrencies have been practically prohibited in the country due to the government’s declaration that it is harmful to the environment. The action resulted in a huge migration of mining companies, resulting in an increase in mining operations in the United States and other countries.
While certain governments, such as Brazil’s, and even some cities in the United States, such as Miami’s, have created rules to foster this growth, not all governments have been so accommodating. Swedish regulators supported a resolution to ban the mining process in the EU, claiming that it put too much burden on energy supply, even from clean sources, forcing it to shut down.