European Bitcoin Energy Association: A step towards sustainability and efficiency

Time and again, we hear loud voices from the EU Commission calling for a ban on Bitcoin mining in the EU due to the energy-intensive proof-of-work mechanism. In this article, we talk to Rachel Geyer, Vice Chair of the European Bitcoin Energy Association, to find out more about the goals and plans of this organization.

The European Bitcoin landscape is experiencing a groundbreaking development: the founding of the European Bitcoin Energy Association (EBEA). This initiative marks a decisive step in the convergence of Bitcoin mining and energy policy.

What is the EBEA?

The EBEA has a clear objective: It wants to serve as a platform for dialog and exchange in order to make the interactions between Bitcoin mining and Europe's energy infrastructure more transparent and efficient. With an ensemble of leading minds from the Bitcoin and energy sectors, the EBEA offers a unique opportunity to fully exploit the potential of Bitcoin mining and at the same time have a lasting impact on European energy policy.

The importance of Bitcoin mining and its role in modern energy infrastructure cannot be underestimated. Mining is not only a pillar of the Bitcoin network, but also offers the opportunity to utilize unused or surplus energy sources. The EBEA recognizes this and is committed to building a bridge between the technical aspects of mining and the political framework.

The members of the EBEA are aware of the challenges and opportunities that Bitcoin mining presents. They are committed to engaging in a constructive dialog based on facts and providing the public and policy makers with a realistic perspective on mining. Alongside industry experts such as Blocktrainer, Braiins Mining and Harald Rauter (expert in climate science), we at Coinfinity are proud to be one of the founding members and thank Terahash and especially Rachel Geyer for taking the initiative.

Interview with Rachel Geyer

Rachel, why was the EBEA founded and what is its aim?

"The EBEA was founded to give Bitcoin a voice in Brussels. The energy-intensive proof-of-work mechanism behind Bitcoin is still viewed very negatively in some circles, and there are still voices calling for a ban on Bitcoin mining in the EU.

We believe it is wrong to judge and potentially ban cryptocurrencies based on their energy consumption alone, without looking at the bigger picture.

We are seeing a growing number of examples around the world where Bitcoin mining is proving to be a positive contribution to energy infrastructure, particularly in areas where a large proportion of the energy mix on the grid comes from renewable sources. The EU is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2050 and we believe that Bitcoin mining will help us achieve these goals. Bitcoin mining is the only industry that is continuously becoming greener - and this is achieved through economic incentives, not regulations.

Our aim is to educate and inform about the link between Bitcoin mining and energy infrastructure to ensure that decisions taken at EU level are well-considered."

By founding the EBEA, Europe is sending a strong signal for a future in which Bitcoin and sustainability go hand in hand. It is a step towards a balanced energy policy that recognizes the benefits of digital currencies while ensuring the protection of our environment.

In a world where Bitcoin is playing an increasingly important role, the EBEA is more than just an organization - it is an ambassador for positive change. We at Coinfinity are excited to be part of this journey and to be part of a community that is ready to shape the future of Bitcoin mining and energy policy for the better."

Who do you all have on board, and why is an institution like the EBEA important for Europe and the DACH region?

"We need quality input from the world of finance, energy, climate and bitcoin mining to ensure we can fulfill our mission. Therefore, we have taken the necessary time to ensure that we have high caliber representatives from each field as founding members and on the board. We will continue to build this expertise as we expand our membership.      

I firmly believe that it is not Bitcoin that needs the EU, but the EU needs Bitcoin. We have a widely recognized energy problem in the EU and we at EBEA know that Bitcoin mining can be part of the solution.

Electricity prices in Germany are so high that it is difficult for traditional German SMEs to remain globally competitive. Without a healthy SME sector, Germany will lose its current strong position in the world.

The EU has set itself the target of switching to renewable energies by 2050, but the existing electricity grid does not have the necessary infrastructure to cope with increasingly fluctuating energy sources.

I believe that if the EU wants to become green and remain economically successful, it must embrace this new technology."

What is the current political environment at European level with regard to Bitcoin and Bitcoin mining and how does the EBEA intend to play a political role here?

"On a European level, Bitcoin is still seen and treated as one cryptocurrency among many, and there is a general lack of understanding about the many possibilities of Bitcoin and Bitcoin mining. Our goal is to use facts, figures and proven use cases to change the picture and to inform and educate politicians, regulators and the media about the bigger picture of Bitcoin and Bitcoin mining. It is insufficient to look at the energy consumption of a technology without considering the benefits.

Energy consumption is not a bad thing in itself. After all, who gets to decide what is a "good" and what is a "bad" use of energy? In a democracy, this should be determined by the citizens."

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