The age-old concern about the environmental impact of Bitcoin has continued to irritate communities and governments around the world. In the latest recovery against Bitcoin mining, the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority has requested that the EU introduce a general ban on cryptocurrency mining that uses the “energy-intensive” work certificate system.
The statement released earlier today was titled “Crypto-assets are a threat to climate change – energy-intensive mining should be banned.” The regulator claimed that Bitcoin mining proved to be an obstacle in the country’s transition to renewable energy sources.
Against the background of growing environmental considerations, the report further noted, “manufacturers of cryptocurrencies are keen to use more renewable energy and they are increasing their presence in the Nordic region.”
“Sweden needs the renewable energy that manufacturers of cryptocurrencies target for the climate change of our essential services, and increased use of miners threatens our ability to fulfill the Paris Agreement. Energy-intensive extraction of cryptocurrencies should therefore be banned. “
The statement further questioned the social benefits of cryptocurrencies by claiming that,
“Consumer risks are significant, and cryptocurrencies are commonly used for criminal purposes such as money laundering, terrorist financing and ransomware payments.”
It also added,
“This is alarming, and cryptocurrencies must therefore be regulated.”
With reference to a Report by Digiconomist, the report showed that mining for BTC and ETH together uses about twice as much electricity in one year as the whole of Sweden. It compiled another comparison of Bitcoin’s annual carbon footprint to show that ESG problems are bigger than just high energy consumption.
The Financial Watchdog’s statement concluded by claiming the need to implement policy measures – “to address the damage caused by the method of proof of work mining.” These included a ban at EU level on the mining of cryptocurrencies using the proof of work system.
In addition, it proposed that the country should ban “continued establishment of crypto-mining” with the help of PoW. It also suggested that companies trading or investing in PoW cryptocurrencies be banned from declaring themselves sustainable.
Following China’s total ban on cryptocurrency mining earlier this year, miners have struggled to establish themselves elsewhere with the United States coming to their immediate rescue. But like Sweden, environmentally conscious groups have expressed concern about the same.
Recently, companies in New York reached out to the state governor to deny permission to convert NYC’s fossil fuel facilities into crypto mines, citing environmental considerations.
In addition, legislators in the state are also considering a bill banning the use of fossil fuels to mine Bitcoin and urging miners to document their carbon footprint.