White House Labels Cryptocurrency Mining A Climate Threat

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Jack McEvoy Energy & Environment Reporter
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The White House believes that the federal government should reduce cryptocurrency mining as it is threatening the Biden administration’s climate agenda, according to a report released Thursday.

The White House claims that mining cryptocurrencies are endangering the Biden administration’s climate goals as they generate substantial amounts of carbon emissions and consume large amounts of electricity, according to a report produced by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. The report, which was commissioned by the Biden administration as part of a March executive order on digital asset regulation, recommended that the federal government impose crypto mining regulations to curb the power usage that mining requires. (RELATED: Top Biden Climate Adviser Gina McCarthy Resigns From White House)

“Depending on the energy intensity of the technology used, crypto assets could hinder broader efforts to achieve net-zero carbon pollution in line with US climate commitments and goals,” the report said. “Global electricity generation for the crypto-assets with the largest market capitalizations resulted in a combined 140 ± 30 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per year, or about 0.3% of global annual greenhouse gas emissions.”

The White House instructed the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy as well as other agencies to create environmental regulations that would reduce crypto mining’s energy consumption. However, the report stated that the White House and Congress should pursue legislation to restrict or eliminate crypto-asset mining if the agencies failed to regulate the industry effectively.

WASHINGTON, DC – SEPTEMBER 07: U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks at a ceremony to unveil the official White House portraits of former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House on September 7, 2022 in Washington, DC. The Obama’s portraits will be the first official portraits added to the White House Collection since President Obama held an unveiling ceremony for George W. Bush and Laura Bush in 2012. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

“Should these measures prove ineffective at reducing impacts, the Administration should explore executive actions, and Congress might consider legislation, to limit or eliminate the use of high energy intensity consensus mechanisms for crypto-asset mining,” the report states.

Crypto mining operations to acquire new tokens as well as validating transactions on the cryptocurrency blockchain require a substantial amount of power as multiple computers must be used to solve complex math problems, according to Business Insider.

Crypto mining operations in the United States account for between 0.9% and 1.7% of the nation’s total energy consumption; moreover, the U.S. mines about 38% of the world’s bitcoins in 2022, compared to 3.5% in 2020, according to the report.

The White House did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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