The global energy market has two big problems. The first: Carbon emissions. Despite climate pacts, global carbon emissions increased by 1.4% in 2-17. The second: Democratisation. Energy supply is typically controlled by a small number of companies who then also control energy prices. But now there is a solution to these issues.
Introducing Power Ledger
Using blockchain, Power Ledger aims to democratise and decarbonise the electricity market. As a software company, they believe they can encourage more people to use renewables by distributing their technology among existing energy companies.
They’ve done this by creating an online marketplace for individuals to sell excess energy picked up from renewable energy generators like solar panels attached to their property. After satisfying their own energy needs, any excess is sent to a nearby energy grid . It is then redistributed via Power Ledger’s software to whoever has bought it.
Encouraging individuals to use their own renewable energy generators in this way, Power Ledger is both reducing energy-related carbon emissions and giving people more control over their energy supply.
How does it Work?
Power Ledger runs on blockchain. Unlike traditional energy companies, they don’t have a middle person sitting between you and a generator. Instead, their software automatically understands where energy is flowing and can settle payment for it instantly. This not only saves you time and ensures no energy goes to waste, it also means you needn’t pay for these people in the middle. Ultimately, Power Ledger allows the consumer to save and earn money from using renewable energy.
Is it Effective?
Yes. James Eggleston, senior analyst at Power Ledger highlighted its success with WGB, a housing precinct run by non-profit Access Housing in Whitegum Valley, Australia. Using Power Ledger’s platform for solar and battery, energy costs for people living on the complex have fallen to just a third of normal energy prices.
“By generating energy behind the meter, not having to pay for large-scale network infrastructure, those people are actually being lifted out of poverty,” said Eggleston. “This project has been so successful that Access Housing is currently planning to roll Power Ledger out in all of its buildings.”
Short-term: Power Ledger is looking to implement more projects all over the world from its high volume of enquiries. Long-term: they’d like to see the platform decentralised, meaning anyone around the world will be able to access it and build their own applications upon it.
Eggleston also mentioned expansion into other sectors: water and transport. Currently under testing in Fremantle Australia, he outlined plans to use Power Ledger’s technology to track water usage and provide electronic vehicle charging points.
To conclude, Power Ledger is a software company that uses blockchain to create a marketplace where people can buy and sell excess renewable energy. Taking out the middlemen and using their software will not only potentially make energy a lot cheaper, but also less dangerous for the environment.