US energy officials agree to ‘destroy’ all data from crypto mining survey

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The Texas Blockchain Council and Bitcoin mining firm Riot Platforms claimed that the survey had political motives and posed a threat to innovation and economic growth in the United States.

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US energy officials agree to ‘destroy’ all data from crypto mining survey

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United States energy officials have reached an agreement with the Texas Blockchain Council (TBC) and Bitcoin mining firm Riot Platforms to cease its proposed emergency survey targeting crypto miners across the country.

According to a March 2 filing, the U.S. Department of Energy, the Energy Information Administration (EIA), and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) have settled with the TBC and Riot to stop gathering information from crypto miners for its proposed three-year emergency survey filed under the “EIA-862 Emergency Collection Request.”

Court filing in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Source: CourtListener

It further noted that all information previously collected from crypto miners for the survey — which the TBC and Riot claimed was intrusive — will be deleted, and any forthcoming data will also be discarded.

“Defendants agree that EIA will destroy any information that it has already received in response to the EIA-862 Emergency Survey. If EIA receives additional information in response to the EIA-862 Emergency Survey, EIA will destroy that data.”

The settlement effectively cancels the temporary restraining order, which was set to be in place until March 8.

On Feb. 23, Cointelegraph reported that the court had temporarily suspended the U.S. energy regulators from collecting the data while the lawsuit was ongoing.

This came after the TBC and Riot convinced the judge that irreversible harm would happen without prohibiting further data collection.

The plaintiffs claimed that the survey posed potential damages including non-recoverable costs of compliance with the survey, a credible threat of prosecution if they do not comply, and the disclosure of proprietary information requested.

Read more: Riot Platforms boosted BTC output by 19% in 2023, mines 6,626 Bitcoin

While the EIA estimated the survey would take around 30 minutes to complete, the court considered the estimation “extremely inaccurate.”

The TBC and Riot also challenged the estimate, stating that the cost of compliance so far has been over 40 hours.

However, both the TBC and Riot have agreed that the EIA can submit a new notice seeking public feedback for two months on the information it is allowed to collect.

“Defendants agree that EIA will allow for submission of comments for 60 days, beginning on the date of publication of the New Federal Register Notice,” the filing stated.

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