DEC’s Cryptocurrency Mining Decision To Test New York’s Climate Law

DEC’s Cryptocurrency Mining Decision To Test New York’s Climate Law

VESTAL, NY (WSKG) — The New York Division of Environmental Conservation is transferring ahead with public hearings above a Yates County cryptocurrency mining procedure this week, the hottest step in a process that could outcome in authorized precedent around the state’s cornerstone local weather legislation.

Protestors opposed the City of Torrey planning board’s selection to permit Greenidge to construct out buildings to property Bitcoin mining gear before this year. (Vaughn Golden/WSKG)

Environmental advocacy companies approach to persuade the DEC to deny the renewal of Title V air permits for Greenidge Technology, a pure fuel-burning power plant and cryptocurrency mining procedure together Seneca Lake, in community hearings Wednesday.

“While adequate information and facts has been submitted to start off the expected community evaluation, at this time the applicant has not shown compliance with the necessities of the Local climate Leadership and Group Security Act, together with prerequisites relating to greenhouse fuel emissions,” the DEC wrote in a assertion to WSKG shortly just after it declared the hearings past month.

That assertion coincided with a Tweet from DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos saying Greenidge “has not revealed compliance” with the Climate Leadership and Group Safety Act (CLCPA).

A spokesperson for the DEC denied WSKG’s request for an interview with Seggos on the Greenidge permits.

However the Greenidge facility has drawn the notice of environmental teams considering that it was authorized to conversation from coal-firing to purely natural gas in 2016, the controversy has now tied itself to the authorized fortitude of the CLCPA.

All eyes are on what takes place with this specific facility,” Liz Moran, New York Policy Director for EarthJustice, an advocacy group, advised WSKG. “Will it be permitted to move forward? Will it be viewed as remaining in alignment with our climate ambitions?”

Moran also pointed out that the Greenidge case is one particular of the very first cases of CLCPA becoming termed into problem on the renewal of an current air air pollution allow alternatively of a new permits as was found with the proposed Danskammer and Astoria ability crops.

Roger Downs, Conservation Director of the Sierra Club’s Atlantic Chapter, compares the Greenidge renewal with the state’s handling of all-natural gas fracking just about a ten years back.

“I think this is a pretty analogous problem and I feel the DEC is discovering all the tendrils of their authorized means to set a halt on this activity until finally they can study it and its total impacts and the arrive up with the regulatory system to both allow for it or disallow particular aspects of it,” Downs reported in an interview.

Downs and Moran each assistance a statewide moratorium on proof-of-function cryptocurrency mining, as has been proposed by Ithaca Assemblymember Anna Kelles (D-125). Assembly leaders unsuccessful to just take up Kelles’ legislation as this year’s legislative session drew to a shut soon after the Intercontinental Brotherhood of Electrical Workers voiced its opposition to the moratorium.

A spokesman for Greenidge Technology denied WSKG’s request for an interview, but managed that it believes its permits must be renewed and the facility is in compliance with the weather legislation.

“We embrace the significant targets of the CLCPA,” the Greenidge spokesman wrote in part of a assertion presented to WSKG just after the DEC hearings were declared. “Our recent onsite and upstream possible CO2e emissions are already substantially decreased than the facility’s true emissions in 1990, thanks to the move we took in partnership with the Condition to remove coal-fired operations.”

The registration interval to take part in Wednesday’s hearings has closed, but written public comment is remaining accepted until Oct. 22.

Ferne Dekker

Learn More →