The problem with energy is that it cannot be stored and needs to be used immediately, in its original form or in some other that is put to use. And, this is very evident in the manner that the electricity grid operates around the country with power being generating as per requirements and then getting moved to different states based on demand.
With India marching towards its goal of achieving 100 gigawatt of solar power by 2022 and already home to the world’s largest solar power plant at Bhadla in Rajasthan (2255 MW), there could well be a need that power producers feel about trading their surplus output. By the looks of it, there appears to be a solution for such a scenario all set for use. And it’s called Blockchain technology.
The government of Uttar Pradesh has reportedly introduced a new technology specifically for those generating rooftop solar power that allows consumers to trade their surplus energy. A report published in the Business Standard suggests that the UP Power Corporation and the UP New and Renewable Energy Development Agency are behind the project.
In the first phase that is currently getting started, the project would be limited to some government buildings in state capital Lucknow and would be completed within the next six months. The attempt at this point in time is to demonstrate the feasibility of peer-to-peer energy trade between consumers using blockchain technology.
So where does the technology come from? The two energy companies are being supported by India Smart Grid Forum (ISGF), a PPP initiative of the UP State power ministry and Power Ledger, a market leader in providing blockchain-enabled trading platforms. Once the pilot is completed, the state government would bring about regulations and trading rules in the city and then across the state.
An article published in The BlockCrypto.com quotes an official at the ISGF to suggest that Power Ledger’s platform integrates with smart metering systems to enable households to set prices, track energy trading in real time and enable the settlement of surplus solar transactions in real-time through smart contracts executed via blockchain tech.
As part of the current pilot project in UP, Power Ledger will be unifying its blockchain-based platform with smart meter systems. This will be enabling the participants with rooftop solar infrastructure to regulate the prices, track energy trading and judiciously use the surplus solar energy transactions via smart contracts.
For Power Ledger, this isn’t the first exposure to India’s solar power trading process. A report published by Coin Telegraph says the Australian enterprise had announced the completion of a project in Delhi’s Dwarka region just about a month ago. The project aimed at giving participants cheaper access to renewable energy and an opportunity for solar panel owners to sell surplus power.
The ability to sell excess power should come as a boon for organizations selling solar panels, given that its adoption could bring in some revenues for those using their rooftops to generate solar energy.