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Ethereum’s Vitalik Opposes New York State’s Ban on PoW Mining, Suggests Carbon Pricing as an Alternative Solution

Summary:

  • Vitalik Buterin opposes the banning of Proof-of-Work mining operations by governments.
  • According to Vitalik, governments picking and choosing which specific applications should use electricity or not is a bad idea.
  • He proposes the implementation of carbon pricing as an alternative solution to banning PoW mining.
  • Vitalik was commenting on the news that the State of New York has passed a bill intending to prohibit PoW mining using carbon-based power sources.
  • The bill is yet to be signed into law by the Governor of New York.

The co-founder of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, has chimed in on the ongoing debate as to whether governments should ban proof-of-work mining activities based on the premise that such operations are energy-intensive.

Governments Should Not Decide on the Use of Electricity. Carbon Pricing Can Offer A Solution.

According to Mr. Buterin, it is a bad idea for governments to pick and choose which specific applications should use electricity or not. He also added that carbon pricing would be a better solution as it could provide additional revenue for governments to compensate low-income electricity users.

Carbon pricing is the practice of regulating greenhouse gas emissions by charging a fee for emitting or offering an incentive for emitting less.

Vitalik’s insights on the drawbacks of banning proof-of-work operations and carbon pricing as an alternative were shared through the following tweet.

Ultimately I agree with this (that is, I oppose banning PoW). The government picking and choosing which specific applications are an okay use of electricity or not is a bad idea. Better to just implement carbon pricing, and use some of the revenues to compensate low-income users. https://t.co/NnBzmv5mYz

— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) June 4, 2022

New York State Passes Bill that Bans PoW Mining using Carbon-based Power. But it is Yet to Become Law.

Vitalik’s comments come on the backdrop of news that legislators in the State of New York have passed a bill that would essentially ban proof-of-work mining operations within the state that use carbon-based power sources.

According to Bloomberg, ‘the New York bill calls for a two-year halt on new permits for miners that use carbon-based fuel and also, requires an environmental impact study with an eye on meeting climate goals established under a 2019 statute.’

However, the Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, is yet to sign the bill into law, thus providing some glimmer of hope for crypto enthusiasts who believe that such a bill in the United States would set unintended precedence for other states to follow suit.

Perianne Boring, the founder, and president of the Chamber of Digital Commerce, explained to CNBC that the bill would be a significant setback for the state and stifle New York’s future as a leader in technology. She said:

This is a significant setback for the state and will stifle its future as a leader in technology and global financial services. More importantly, this decision will eliminate critical union jobs and further disenfranchise financial access to the many underbanked populations living in the Empire State.


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