Regulators in China are considering a ban on cryptocurrency mining as an “undesirable” economic activity, according to a government document released Monday . China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) published a new paper that includes a proposal to ban the mining of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin over concerns that crypto mining is a waste of valuable resources—a fact that’s hard to disagree with when you examine the horrific environmental impact. The proposal is available for public comment until May 7. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are mined using specialized computers that sap a tremendous amount of energy. That energy consumption now rivals the amount used by entire countries for normal operations and is doing significant damage to the planet. As the South China Morning Post points out, China’s coal-dependent regions like Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia have become popular destinations for crypto-miners looking for cheap electricity. It’s estimated that as much as 74 percent of global crypto mining is occurring in China, a place where it’s also the most carbon-intensive. According to a recent report in Nature Sustainability , crypto mining emits anywhere between 3 million and 15 million tons of carbon dioxide globally. China’s proposal to ban mining is part of […]

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