In an effort to promote environmentally responsible crypto-asset technologies, the White House proposed some standards for crypto mining. Ideal standards should include very low energy intensities and clean energy usage by operators, it said. If these set standards prove to be ineffective, the U.S. administration indicated its alternate plans. In a clear case of intolerance to adverse environmental impact from the activities, it even suggested placing a limit or a ban on crypto mining. Especially so in high energy intensity consensus mechanisms, like the proof of work method.
U.S. TO Ban Proof Of Work Based Crypto Mining?
A White House report published on Thursday suggested a slew of measures to control high energy usage in crypto related activities. The White House report stated that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) should provide technical assistance on the issue. The overall objective of the standards is to minimize unwanted impacts of cryptocurrency mining, it added. Emissions, noise, water impacts, and negative economic impacts of crypto-asset mining should be controlled, it explained.
In case the above measures and standards fail to prevent the negative impacts, the administration could ban or limit the activities, it explained. The report mentioned high energy intensity consensus mechanisms in crypto mining, in a potential hint to proof of work.
“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.”
In March this year, the White House issued an executive order on ‘Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets.” The order mentioned that advances in digital and distributed ledger technology in recent times led to dramatic growth in energy demand. It then emphasized the need for strong steps to reduce the risks that digital assets could pose for climate change.
More Power To Proof Of Stake Blockchain Projects?
With the upcoming transition of Ethereum to the proof of stake mechanism from proof of work, the energy impacts of mining were widely discussed in recent times. Thanks to the White House’s directive on reducing energy usage, the proof of stake projects could gain prominence. It remains to be seen if the U.S. would take tough stance of placing ban on proof of work mechanism.
Meanwhile, Ethereum cofounder Vitalik Buterin had recently announced the launch of his book titled PROOF of STAKE. The book is a compilation of Buterin’s writings from the past about the making of the Ethereum network. The writings are focused on building an internet native world, the publisher said.
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