Vice-Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority Urges the EU to Consider a Ban on Proof-of-Work Crypto Mining

According to a senior European securities regulator, the EU should consider prohibiting energy-intensive kinds of cryptocurrency mining.

In a recent interview with the Financial Times, Erik Thedéen, vice-chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority, stated that Bitcoin mining has evolved into a national problem and warned of the environmental and climate change concerns.

Thedéen requested that European authorities explore prohibiting proof-of-work mining — which is employed by Bitcoin and many other blockchains (for example, Litecoin) — in order to incentivise a move in the sector toward more energy-efficient alternatives such as proof-of-stake (PoS).

Thedéen’s views aligned with China’s efforts to ban Bitcoin mining. China banned crypto mining in May 2021, prompting mining organisations to relocate to more energy-efficient environments.

According to a Q3 report from the Bitcoin Mining Council, China’s prohibition actually boosted the use of renewable energy for crypto mining, accounting for 58 percent of Bitcoin’s network in the third quarter of 2021.

Melanion Capital, an alternative investment business located in Paris, reacted to Thedéen’s worries about PoW, calling a ban on crypto mining “totally ignorant.”

According to a report, the investment business said that since Bitcoin is decentralised, it lacks a lobby organisation to protect its interests. Melanion said that authorities were abusing the system by threatening to criminalise mining without enabling the sector to defend itself.

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