Some in the BTC community will find Adams' comments hard to reconcile — almost like he's taken a "have your cake and eat it" approach.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams has declared that he's in favor of cryptocurrency… but against cryptocurrency mining.
The newly elected politician — who has sought to make the Big Apple a hub for digital assets — was confronted on his views in Albany, at a joint session of state legislators.
There have been long-running concerns that Bitcoin mining is already having a damaging impact on New York's climate.
A former coal power plant on Seneca Lake is now being used to power thousands of computers tasked with discovering new coins — but locals have said this is heating up nearby lakes and making it "so warm you feel like you're in a hot tub."
Seneca Lake Guardian, an organization that advocates for the area, welcomed Mayor Adams' remarks but now wants him to join calls for a moratorium on mining across the state. Its president, Joseph Campbell, added:
"Bitcoin mining could cost New Yorkers millions of dollars in energy bills while kneecapping local businesses, poisoning our water, and filling our air with deadly CO2 emissions. The industry is already expanding fast upstate, and if we don't act quickly, outside speculators could begin converting the City's peaker plants into 24/7 fossil fuel-guzzling cancers on communities of color."
Some in the BTC community will find Adams' comments hard to reconcile — almost like he's taken a "have your cake and eat it" approach. After all, it's all fine and good to support cryptocurrencies, but most major ones don't exist without mining.
Mining Decision Pushed Back
The delay to March 31 has attracted criticism from local politicians, who claim this "will enable Greenidge to complete the full buildout of its cryptocurrency mining facility." State Assemblywoman Anna Kelles added:
"This decision is one of those moments when we need the DEC to lead and take swift action on this critical climate issue. I urge the DEC to complete their review as quickly as possible and deliver a decision to the concerned residents, business owners, winemakers, and environmental activists who have been advocating for this issue."
Eric Adams is automatically converting the first three paychecks he receives as mayor into Bitcoin and Ether — and he's currently engaged in a friendly competition with his Miami counterpart Francis Suarez to become the most crypto-friendly city in America. In a statement last month, Adams added:
"New York is the center of the world, and we want it to be the center of cryptocurrency and other financial innovations. Being on the forefront of such innovation will help us create jobs, improve our economy, and continue to be a magnet for talent from all over the globe."
A hardline stance against crypto mining may diminish New York's attractiveness — not least because other states have been far less squeamish when it comes to embracing these energy-intensive operations.