believes Merge is a’step in the right direction’ for crypto’s energy use.
Rostin Behnam (chair of the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission or CFTC) stated that the transition to proof-ofstake in Ethereum’s blockchain may reduce crypto’s energy consumption, but suggested that legislation will still be required to address the issue.
At a Thursday hearing before Senate Agriculture Committee, Behnam answered a question by Amy Klobuchar. Klobuchar raised concerns about the environmental impacts of “significant energy” needed to mine cryptocurrencies. The CFTC chair stated that the current crypto bill being considered by lawmakers would need a report on energy consumption, which could be used to guide future policy discussions and provide incentives to shift away from carbon-intensive sources of energy.
Behnam stated, “We have all heard the statistics on the incredible amount of energy required to mine coins.” “I believe that Ethereum has had an event last night which will reduce energy consumption. This is a step in the right directions, but not the solution.
Behnam stated in writing that he supported the Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act. This legislation would allow the CFTC to expand its authority over crypto markets. It also allows the agency to have a “lens into the trading platform” and not rely on users to bring cases.
“The bill would give the authority to CFTC to regulate the markets. This volatility, fraud, manipulation — most of it would likely go away now that we have a regulator, a cop on beat, which would deter bad actors from doing anything.
Related: Sheila Warren asks for clarification on Crypto bill’s ‘digital commodity’
Thursday saw the Ethereum Merge. This marked the transition of the blockchain from proof-of work to proof-of stake and reduced the network’s energy use by 99.95%. Cointelegraph reported that many non-fungible tokens were minted with a Merge theme, lowering the price of Ether to $1,500 within hours.