Pennsylvania Rep Revises Energy Bill, Drops Crypto Mining Ban
Greg Vitali, a member of Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives, has revised an energy conservation bill in the state, opting to drop a proposed two-year ban on crypto mining permits.
The initial Cryptocurrency Energy Conservation Act, introduced by Vitali, included the mining ban as a response to concerns about the substantial energy consumption associated with crypto mining.
However, he has now decided to remove the ban to increase the bill’s chances of advancing, according to a CoinDesk report from Tuesday.
“There is not a high tolerance for strong environmental policy,” Vitali was quoted as saying when asked why the mining ban was dropped.
The amended bill now focuses on introducing reporting requirements for specific crypto mining facilities and requests an impact study from the state’s Department of Environmental Protection.
The revised approach reflects the broader debate about the energy implications of crypto mining, as lawmakers grapple with environmental concerns and the crypto industry’s push for more favorable regulations.
Pennsylvania’s decision follows the example of New York, which imposed a two-year moratorium on new mining facilities that uses carbon-based fuel in 2022.
Long-standing opposition to mining
Vitali has in the past expressed strong opposition to crypto mining, saying in an opinion piece in The Philadelphia Inquirer earlier this year that Pennsylvania should “follow the White House’s lead in regulating the cryptomining industry before it’s too late.”
The state representative further claimed that crypto mining companies in Pennsylvanie are “burning waste coal and fracked gas” to power their operations, and said this “releases massive amounts of harmful air pollutants such as nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide.”
Cryptocurrencies that rely on mining for their operation are those that use the proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism.