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Blockchain energy startup Power Ledger extends energy trading trial in Fremantle

Fri, 23 Aug 2019, 05:04 am UTC

Australian blockchain energy startup Power Ledger has announced its energy trading trial in Fremantle, Western Australia is heading into the second phase.

The trial, which was launched in November 2018, involved using Power Ledger’s blockchain technology for tracking rooftop solar energy trading transactions between 18 households in the city. So far, the platform has processed almost 50,000 transactions per month and tracked over 4 megawatt hours of peer-to-peer (p2p) renewable energy trades.

“Power Ledger’s platform has created a renewable energy marketplace, enabling Fremantle residents to set their own prices and trade solar energy generated from their rooftops with neighbours that don’t have solar,” said Power Ledger executive chairman Dr. Jemma Green.

Dr. Green said p2p energy trading has the potential to deliver several benefits to the energy marketplace including more choices for customers on how they manage their power use and access to local, low-cost and low carbon energy, among others.

The trial is a collaborative initiative which also involves participation from Curtin University, Synergy, Western Power, and energyOS. It can be recalled that the Australian government announced A$8 million grant to a project to explore the use of blockchain technology and data analytics to integrate distributed energy and water systems in 2017.

Power Ledger said that by using Western Power’s existing network with Synergy’s customers, its platform enabled households to buy and sell excess rooftop solar energy in real-time. The platform also allowed residents to view electricity usage in 30-minute intervals, instead of the 30-60 day billing cycle.

“Western Power’s smart meter data was fed into Power Ledger’s blockchain trading platform and then exported to Synergy’s billing system, to ensure a secure and accurate recording of the energy trading,” it added.

The trial was slated to be completed in June 2019. The second phase, which will run until the end of the year, will aim to gain a deeper insight into consumer preferences and to test additional pricing models. The key focus will be on exploring how to overcome the challenges to support mass adoption of peer-to-peer tariff structures in Western Australia.

Power Ledger’s SaaS energy trading platform is currently deployed in several places across Western Australia as well as in Thailand, Japan, the United States, and Europe. Just recently, it completed a 5-month trial with Kansai Electric Power Co. (KEPCO), the second-largest utility in Japan, demonstrating the benefits of their P2P system for post- FIT (feed-in tariff) surplus power in Osaka.

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