Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin have been looked upon negatively in the media by some due to the huge amount of energy they consume. The entire network could consume the same amount of energy as some medium-sized countries even. However, what people are talking less about are the blockchain companies that could revolutionize the power sector as we know it.
This niche is not as widely talked about as other cryptocurrency niches such as AI, and that’s a shame, because these projects are working on some excellent solutions that could help us create better electricity solutions for ourselves and our communities.
These project’s goals extend beyond more efficient cryptocurrency mining. Instead, these providers will allow for citizens to take control of their electricity usage in ways they were not previously able to. Once these solutions reach their full potential, the world could see a more efficient usage of resources by using the blockchain to share the load.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at some of these innovative companies and find out exactly what they plan to do to revolutionize the way we power our everyday activities. First though, let’s take a look at the current state of the energy sector and see why it needs to change in the first place.
While our society has made some great strides via alternative energy sources such as solar and wind, the fact is that these solutions are still not well implemented. Many people would love to take advantage of solar alternatives, but the infrastructure required to get started is outside the budget of many of those who would be looking to lower their carbon footprint. Unfortunately for the energy sector, this barrier to entry leaves a great idea stuck with little to no real-world execution.
The costs of traditional electricity creation methods are also rising, and there’s not a lot that individuals can do to relieve these burdens save for cutting their usage, which many do. However, there’s only so much you can cut without shunning modern convenience entirely, and most power providers are the only available option in a particular region or even an entire state!
This leaves them with no competition, and little reason to adjust their pricing. For citizens of these locales, that means paying whatever price that these companies ask with no recourse or ability to leave. Frankly, we can do better.
While the electricity sector is not as heavily populated as other sectors like banking or AI, there are still some great projects here.
For example, Power Ledger is an Australian company in the energy sector that is deploying a P2P electricity network. This democratization of utility resources makes it so that individuals have more options when purchasing electricity.
No longer will consumers be chained to only one option, and this free market creates better prices for everyone. Those who already have solar equipment but produce more power then they can use will be able to profit from this energy instead of it going to waste. Those who do not already have equipment can buy cheaper energy from their neighbors, bypassing any middlemen or centralized utility authorities who have no incentive to offer competitive pricing.
Grid+, another energy provider offers a similar service, but with a twist. They actually offer some very easy to use software and devices that allow you to smartly monitor the state of your electricity consumption in your home.
This involves a smart meter, grid agent, and their mobile phone application. It’s all very easy to set up, and once connected it can actually make predictions about the cost of energy, and then purchase for you at ideal times.
It can also automatically cut off certain appliances at peak hours when the costs to run these devices is the highest. If you have solar panels and battery backups already installed in your home, then there’s another great feature here for you. It’s possible to purchase electricity when the price is low, and then resell when it peaks, potentially earning yourself a nice profit.
That, of course, means that you’ll potentially need to install thousands of dollars in solar panels before this part of the project can benefit you. That’s a huge expenditure for most people, but the blockchain has you covered here too!
Sun Exchange is a platform that connects people who want to install solar panels with those who have capital. This works similar to peer to peer lending platforms. Individuals, businesses or organizations looking to add solar systems to their homes or offices can start up a project on the Sun Exchange platform. Investors can then come in to fund these project.
This allows for everyone to access the potential of solar power despite their economic position. After investors finish funding the crowd sale, the solar system will be installed. Sun Exchange then collects monthly rental fees which it pays out to investors. This makes for a very rare opportunity to both do good for the world and earn money at the same time.
Thus far, Sun Exchange is working with a number of conservation centers, schools and businesses in South Africa to fund their solar initiatives. Soon though, these expansions will be available all over the world.
In closing, the blockchain has the ability to completely change the way society currently looks at it. While now, people see the blockchain as a resource hog that will slowly rob our planet of precious resources, that narrative will soon change. Instead, the blockchain will likely be responsible for helping to save the Earth from our ever growing electricity needs.
The efficiency of the blockchain will soon allow for a distributed power grid that will allow communities to create their own electricity in a more clean fashion than purchasing it from a power conglomerate. The free market inherent in these systems will drop the costs of powering your home, and it will make it easier to spread the power grid to farther reaches of the globe.
The growth of solar panels in consumer homes will be strengthened, and possibly even financed by blockchain initiatives. Thus allowing even communities in lower economic positions to benefit from this new technology through their friends and neighbors. As an investor, it’s wise to examine all possible applications for a new technology, and the utilities sector is certainly not one to be overlooked.
There’s quite a few great companies here, and you should spend an afternoon getting acquainted with what they have to offer. In the next few years, everyone you know might soon be using these systems to power their homes and businesses in a way that’s not only better for their wallets, but also better for their communities and the world we live in.