Bitcoin mining machines in China. Photo: www.zk71.com

In an effort to cut energy consumption, authorities in the Chinese autonomous region of Inner Mongolia have proposed closing down all local cryptocurrency mining operations.

The Inner Mongolia National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) last week released an official proposal to shut down local crypto miners in accordance with its energy-saving regulations, Cointelegraph reports.

The proposal suggests ways to “comprehensively clean up and shut down virtual currency mining projects” by the end of April. The authority also proposed a strict ban on new crypto mining projects in the region. The NDRC will collect public feedback on the draft proposal until Wednesday.

According to a Reuters report, Inner Mongolia was the only one of 30 mainland areas under Beijing’s energy consumption and energy intensity review that failed to meet energy-saving targets in 2019.

Inner Mongolia became a popular destination for crypto miners because of its low electricity costs. Local authorities, however, have apparently been planning a crackdown on crypto mining operations in the region in recent years, issuing multiple statements scrutinizing local mining businesses, said the Cointelegraph report. In August 2020, Inner Mongolia officials considered a new policy preventing crypto miners from using state-subsidized electricity.