Australia’s coastal city of Fremantle has kicked off a trial that will allow some residents to trade solar power on a blockchain-based platform provided by renewable energy-focused crypto startup Power Ledger.
According to the Minister for Finance, Energy and Aboriginal Affairs in the government of Western Australia, Ben Wyatt, around 40 households in Fremantle will participate in the trial that will end next year in June.
Efficient Balancing of Supply and Demand
During the trial, households will enjoy the flexibility of determining the price at which they are willing to purchase and sell solar power for and then conduct the transactions on a blockchain-enabled platform.
“The trial represents an innovative solution to virtual energy trading that may have implications for energy utilities working to balance energy supply and demand all over the world,” Wyatt said in a statement. “These households are believed to be the first in the world to be taking part in an active, billed, peer-to-peer trading trial that allows them to effectively buy and sell solar energy generated by their rooftop system across the grid.”
The trial is part of the RENeW Nexus Project that has brought together various entities including Power Ledger. The RENeW Nexus project was initiated with a view of exploring how future cities can use blockchain technology and big data to integrate distributed energy as well as water systems infrastructure.
Power Ledger in the United States
This comes less than a month since Power Ledger made a foray in the biggest wholesale electricity market in the United States by inking a deal with energy supplier American PowerNet. The deal allowed Power Ledger to deploy its blockchain-based peer-to-peer renewable energy trading platform at the electricity provider’s headquarters in the state of Pennsylvania.
As CCN reported at the time, the initiative enabled the solar power generated on the rooftops and carports at the headquarters of American PowerNet to be distributed to the surrounding businesses using Power Ledger’s xGrid platform.
“Rather than just dump our excess solar power on to the grid, we’re thrilled we can now provide clean, sustainable power to our neighbors,” CCN quoted American PowerNet’s president, Scott Helm, as having said.
A month prior, Power Ledger had won the 2018 edition of Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC), a competition organized by the billionaire founder of Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson, to equip techpreneurs with the necessary tools required for their success. The startup, which raised approximately AUD$34 million in an initial coin offering last year in October, received financial endorsements totaling millions of dollars after winning the XTC 2018.