Monthly summary of crypto news in August

Here are the top crypto-currency industry news stories from this month.

Hydroelectric power plants told to stop powering Bitcoin miners in China

The Yingjiang County People’s Government Office in China instructed hydroelectric power plants in the area to cut off power to Bitcoin mining operations earlier this week. The event marks the latest development in China’s crackdown on the crypto-currency mining industry.

Regulators have informed power plants that if illegal Bitcoin miners are not removed from the list of suppliers, electricity will be forcibly cut off for mining operations in the area.

In addition, the notice requires the power plants to submit a report to China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) once the power dismantling process is completed. These reports should be used by the NDRC to improve efforts to crack down on the illegal supply of electricity to crypto-currency mining operations.

China’s municipal and provincial governments are increasing pressure on Bitcoin mining amid growing environmental concerns and apprehensions about the financial risks associated with crypto-currency trading and mining.

This resistance to crypto-currency mining has pushed China’s contribution to the global Bitcoin hash rate to 46.04%, with Chinese miners seeking refuge in Central Asia and African countries with better regulatory prospects.

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El Salvador to deploy 200 Bitcoin ATMs as country prepares to adopt BTC as legal tender

President Nayib Bukele announced on Twitter that El Salvador is deploying 200 ATMs and 50 bank branches across the country to improve the country’s crypto-currency infrastructure, as part of the implementation of the Bitcoin adoption bill next month. The initiative is expected to improve the accessibility and convenience of crypto and fiat transactions and promote the mass adoption of Bitcoin in the country.

The new ATMs will be compatible with the Salvadoran state-backed Chivo wallet, as well as all existing crypto-currency wallets.

Addressing concerns about the bill and its implementation, the president added that no one is being forced to use Bitcoin and that people who do not wish to engage with the crypto-currency will be able to exchange any Bitcoin they receive for cash at these ATMs.

The bill to adopt and accept Bitcoin as legal tender was passed in June by the Salvadoran parliament and aims to reduce transaction costs and integrate the unbanked population into the economy.

However, its rather hasty implementation and the lack of clarity in the regulators’ plan of action have drawn criticism from institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and organizations such as Fitch Ratings.

US infrastructure bill could affect more than 60 million Americans

Coinbase’s global vice president of tax, Lawrence Zlatkin, expressed disappointment at the lack of public discourse on the rushed addition of crypto-currency-based provisions to the US Congress’ infrastructure bill. The leader pointed out that the hastily inserted crypto-currency amendments could impact more than 20 percent of the US population.

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“Today, about 60 million Americans own crypto-currencies, roughly one-fifth of the entire US population. These Americans, and the entire crypto ecosystem, deserve more dialogue than provisions inserted at the last minute,” Zlatkin said in an editorial on Bloomberg.

The infrastructure bill, which recently passed the U.S. Senate without the proposed amendments to the crypto-currency tax reporting mandates, calls for raising $1 trillion to fund roads, bridges and major infrastructure projects.

Zlatkin explained that the outrage against the unfair treatment of the crypto industry and the unclear language used in the bill goes beyond the crypto community, adding that senators have been contacted by more than 80,000 people in the past few days alone.

The Coinbase executive particularly emphasized the potentially broad interpretation of the definition of the term digital asset broker and said that if implemented in its current form, the bill would impose unreasonably strict tax reporting requirements on validators and software developers, pushing them out of the U.S.

VeChain launches blockchain-based platform for carbon footprint reporting

VeChain, the supply chain management company, announced earlier this week the launch of a new service that uses distributed ledger technology (DLT) with software as a service (SaaS) to help companies renovate their carbon footprint data management.

The Digital Carbon Footprint SaaS service seeks to overcome the trust and transparency barriers in reporting a company’s carbon emissions data by capitalizing on the benefits of a public blockchain system.

VeChain’s blockchain-based Digital Carbon Footprint SaaS service provides a comprehensive platform and evokesThe serviceallows companies to use their key carbon footprint metrics and integrate them with the VeChain network’s leading assurance providers, which can then enable the organization to derive new value from these metrics.

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The service allows companies to take their key carbon footprint data metrics and integrate them with leading assurance providers in the VeChain network, which can then enable the organization to derive new value from that data and improve its environmental performance.

Binance exposes users to financial risk, says UK financial regulator

The U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued a notice regarding leading crypto-currency exchange Binance, stating that the exchange was unable to be effectively supervised and that, as a result, its complex and high-risk products pose a danger to users.

The notice further prevented Binance from undertaking all services that were authorized by the FCA in 2018. This includes advising and processing crypto investments for its users. The exchange platform has also been asked to stop all advertising and promotion in the UK.

The financial watchdog said that the restrictions imposed on Binance were a result of the exchange’s failure to meet the threshold requirement for effective supervision and the lack of appropriate protection for its consumers.

In addition, Binance’s failure to submit, report and implement its money laundering and terrorist financing prevention business plan also contributed to the decision, the FCA said. Binance responded by saying it will continue to work with regulators to encourage innovation while ensuring consumer protection.