Tech

Sweden urges Europe to ban cryptocurrency mining due to environmental concerns

Hot potatoes: The price of cryptocurrencies continues to rise, and while this is good news for miners, it means more people are joining in the victory, which is equivalent to spending more energy mining such bitcoins. Sweden considers the environmental impact of this activity to be so serious that it wants to completely ban it in Europe.

Euronews reports that two directors of Sweden’s Financial Conduct Authority, Erik Tedeen and Bjorn Reisinger, have said that the country’s growth in cryptocurrency production and the subsequent increase in energy consumption threatens its ability to meet the goals set in the Paris Climate Agreement. Therefore, they propose to ban mining of cryptocurrency with proof of work across Europe, and Sweden to prevent the creation of new cryptocurrency mining operations, and to ban companies that trade and invest in crypto assets from calling themselves environmentally sustainable.

The pair said that Sweden’s bitcoin mining energy consumption increased by several hundred percent between April and August and now consumes the equivalent of 200,000 households.

“Crypto assets pose a threat to climate change – energy-intensive mining should be banned,” the regulators said in a statement. statement… “The University of Cambridge and Digiconomist have calculated that the two largest cryptoassets, Bitcoin and Ethereum, together consume about twice as much electricity per year as all of Sweden.”

Sweden has relatively low electricity prices due to its focus on renewable energy sources. Ironically, it is these low costs that attract miners and have an impact on the environment. The problem has been exacerbated after China declared all cryptocurrency illegal a few months ago, forcing miners to move elsewhere.

It’s not just cryptocurrency mining that affects the environment. The average NFT that everyone seems to be adopting these days has a carbon footprint equivalent to more than a month’s electricity consumption by the average person living in the European Union.

Not everyone agrees with the Swedish watchdog’s assessment. Paris-based alternative investment firm Melanion Capital said (via Cointelegraph), “The claim that Bitcoin miners are compromising the power grid is completely misinformed.”

“The absence of such a political counterbalance [for Bitcoin miners] should not be seen as an opportunity to take action that makes an industry illegal due to its lack of defensive capacity. “


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