AIR and Energy Web Help U.S. Policymakers and Regulators Connect the Dots on Crypto and Climate
Observations from over one dozen briefings held this summer for staff at several federal agencies, U.S. Senate, and House of Representatives about the Crypto Climate Accord
In light of the growing interests and concerns about the crypto industry among U.S. policymakers and regulators in financial and energy markets, nonprofits Alliance for Innovative Regulation (AIR) and Energy Web recently briefed a diverse group of U.S. financial regulators and offices in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
Policymakers and regulators are developing their respective evaluation frameworks at the nexus of crypto and climate. Despite distinct legal mandates, the offices we briefed share two primary concerns: consumer/investor protection and risk mitigation. In terms of consumer protection, there are concerns around reporting and disclosure for crypto, climate risk, and ESG (environmental, social, governance) products. In terms of risk mitigation, there are concerns about how to evaluate and address the risks that climate change and crypto introduce to bank and investment portfolios.
With these concerns in mind, these educational briefings helped regulators and policymakers better understand the synergistic relationship between the crypto industry and decarbonization efforts. The aim of the briefings has been to clarify five main points related to the Crypto Climate Accord (CCA) for policymakers and regulators:
- Open-source decentralized technologies provide useful tools for the back-end of digital solutions that support electric grid decarbonization and grid flexibility management;
- The crypto industry is poised to become early adopters of various digital solutions built with decentralized technologies to decarbonize crypto mining facilities, exchanges/platforms, and investments;
- By tackling wider energy use concerns of crypto mining head-on and turning the crypto industry into a new source of demand for renewables, we can help avoid stymying digital innovation across energy, financial, and other markets;
- Over 170 organizations from the crypto and energy/climate sectors have assembled under the CCA as a private sector-led initiative to accelerate the development of open-source decentralized solutions and good practices to decarbonize the crypto industry;
- As the crypto industry makes progress in support of the CCA, it will offer other industries new technology tools and roadmaps to decarbonize and report proof of decarbonization in a transparent, verifiable way.
These offices have shown substantial interest in the CCA, as demonstrated by the number of briefings that have already taken place. Staff also positively received information about the aims and expected impacts of the CCA, especially in terms of how the CCA is accelerating the development of climate solutions and promoting digital innovation. AIR and Energy Web will continue to hold more briefings and provide updates as the CCA community makes progress towards its shared objective to decarbonize the crypto sector with new open-source decentralized technology solutions and good practices.
“We at AIR are happy to see the high level of engagement that federal agency, Senate, and House staff have displayed around the issues and opportunities that the crypto industry presents for climate change,” said Jo Ann Barefoot, CEO and Founder of AIR. “We look forward to sharing progress with regulators and policymakers in the months ahead about innovative open-source solutions the Crypto Climate Accord community is developing to make crypto verifiably green.”
Open Session on Regulatory Questions: October 14th, 10am U.S. Eastern Time
For those interested in sharing their challenges and contributing insights for regulatory dialogues, AIR and Energy Web are hosting an open session for the CCA Supporter/Signatory community at 10am U.S. Eastern time on October 14th. This session will inform AIR and Energy Web’s forthcoming engagement with regulators and policymakers, including a larger regulatory and policymaker event in November — so we encourage your participation in the October 14th session.
To join the CCA community, please complete the form on our website via https://cryptoclimate.org/engage-with-us/.
AIR and Energy Web are both co-conveners of the CCA.