The European Commission calls on Member States to take measures to reduce electricity consumption caused by cryptocurrency mining. The institution even mentions the possibility of completely stopping mining activities in the event of load shedding from the electricity network.
Targeted mining to alleviate the European Union’s energy crisis?
This Tuesday, October 18, the European Commission presented an action plan outlining how whose new technologies can help improve the efficient use of energy resources.
In this document, the European Commission defines many key actions to accelerate the digitalization of the energy system:
- help consumers better control their energy consumption;
- controlling energy consumption in the information and communication technologies sector;
- strengthen the cybersecurity of energy networks through new legislation.
In parallel, the European Commission also addresses the cryptocurrency industry and in particular the mining industry. Based on data from the University of Cambridge, the document states:
“The energy consumption of cryptocurrencies has increased by 900% in the last 5 years and has more or less doubled compared to 2 years ago, reaching approximately 0.4% of the world’s electricity consumption. »
Thus, by invoking the energy crisis that the European Union is currently going through, the Commission strongly urges the Member States to implement targeted measures to reduce the electricity consumption of Bitcoin miners and other cryptocurrencies in Proof of Work (PoW).
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Strong measures to be taken against mining
In the event of the need for load shedding, which consists of suspending the supply of energy to individuals or companies, the European Commission goes even further:
“Member States must also be ready to stop crypto-asset mining. »
From a longer term perspective, the organization considers it crucial to end the tax breaks and other tax measures benefiting cryptocurrency miners currently in force in certain Member States.
In addition, without giving further details on this subject at the moment, the European Commission plans to cooperate with other international institutions and to rely on the technical expertise of standardization bodies to develop an energy efficiency label for blockchains.
Will the impact of such measures be sufficient to put an end to the energy crisis that the European Union is currently going through? It is unlikely. This activity remains a minority activity in the Member States and the majority of the energy used comes from renewable resources such as hydroelectricity.
It remains to be seen in the coming weeks whether concrete measures — and in particular in what form — will actually be taken by the Member States.
👉 On the same topic – The European Parliament approves the MiCA and TFR regulations
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Source: European Commission documentation
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