A new measure would require US crypto miners to publish their greenhouse gas emissions, putting more pressure on a fast-growing industry that has been chastised for its negative impact on the environment and electrical system.

The “Crypto-Asset Environmental Transparency Act,” introduced by Democratic Senator Edward Markey, co-sponsored by Senator Jeff Merkley, and Democrats Representative Jared Huffman, would require crypto miners using more than 5 megawatts of electricity to report emissions and the source of power.

Senator Merkley said in a statement:

“Crypto-asset mining consumes massive amounts of electricity, most of which is generated by burning fossil fuels. This has an environmental impact on climate chaos equivalent to putting 30 million gas-burning cars on the road!

And a lot of that fossil electricity is generated at power plants that have a disproportionate impact on disadvantaged and frontline communities, making bad environmental justice issues worse. In addition, they create massive amounts of electronic waste, strain on fragile electric grids, and higher electricity prices for everyone.”

The US Environmental Protection Agency will investigate the impact of existing and proposed digital mining activities and recommend any actions state authorities may take to lessen their energy usage.

“This bill is an important step to understanding the full environmental impacts of these operations, as well as holding crypto mining operations accountable for the damage they cause,” Merkley added.

Earlier this year, Markey signed on to a letter from Senator Elizabeth Warren, a fellow Democrat from Massachusetts, requesting that miners disclose years of power consumption and emissions, but responses were limited.

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