EU Officials Weighing Bitcoin Trading Ban In Tune to Their Proposed Mining Ban
Lawmakers in the European Union have been mulling for a Bitcoin ban due to its existing Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining protocol. German digital culture organization Netzpolitik reported that the EU officials went as far as suggesting an all-out ban on Bitcoin to curb its overall energy consumption.
The EU officials met with Sweden’s financial supervisor and an environmental protection agency making some of the most concerning comments. The officials suggested that regulators should pressurize the Bitcoin community to switch to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) mechanism.
The PoS consensus mechanism consumes very little energy in comparison to the existing Proof-of-Work (PoW) mechanism. An unidentified official in the discussion said: “Ethereum started moving [to PoS] because of its community…if Ethereum is able to shift, we could legitimately request the same from BTC. We need to ‘protect’ other crypto coins that are sustainable. We don’t see [the] need to ‘protect’ the Bitcoin community.”
Another unnamed source suggested that the European Union could put a blanket ban on trading all digital assets that use a Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm. The document further noted that the decision was to protect the “ongoing decision-making process” but it also highlights that the EU was seriously considering such dramatic regulation.
Furthermore, the officials remained largely unconcerned while discussing the potential effect of an outright Bitcoin ban. They noted: “Participants in BTC are fully aware of the volatility of the currency/investment risk. [We] do not need additional protection measures”.
Bitcoin’s energy usage has been one of the growing concerns among the community. Even Tesla dropped Bitcoin payments last year sharing concerns regarding Bitcoin’s energy consumption.
However, after China’s blanket ban on Bitcoin mining last year, last year, the industry has largely moved to using green and renewable energy. Bitcoin miners have moved to North America and other parts of the world wherein clean energy is available in abundance.
Recently, Ripple co-founder Brad Garlinghouse also teamed up with Greenpeace to pressure the Bitcoin community to change its consensus mechanism to PoS.