Author: Jagdish Kumar, India
With India’s focusing on technology to bring changes in country’s ailing energy sector, blockchain can play a pivotal role in overcome this challenge.
When the country is looking to provide power to each home after achieving the target to connecting 18000 villages with power, blockchain technology can provide another push to the government.
The draft National Energy Policy suggests fuel-neutral subsidy, wherein blockchain would not only make the subsidy transfer safer, but may also provide the beneficiary with an option to connect with the fuel service providers directly.
In India, power sale of decentralised solar photovoltaic, insurance contracts (smart contracts) for business-creation microfinance possibilities, data sharing of implementation schemes, or single-window approval for infrastructure projects are some of the areas where blockchain can be used.
As the usage of blockchain application is on the rise, there are various systems, which can help the energy sector.
As the blocks contain the information about all the transactions which have been done in the system, the level of personal financial privacy and choice of liberating the information to other involved blocks remains a question.
The Energy Web Foundation, a blockchain developer foundation, has been trying to find a way to reduce the amount of power usage and have unveiled a solution of using proof-of-authority, a set of trusted ‘industry validators’, as a consensual validation process rather than the proof-of-work.
However, there are various challenges in the country which still have to provide power to each house and that too 24X7 power that make this system work.
There are some work which is already done in other countries by LO3 Energy and Siemens that have been working on blockchain projects in energy. They have built a pilot blockchain-enabled microgrid in Brooklyn that connects about 60 solar sites.
The sites use the technology to enable system owners to sell and buy electricity. Similarly, blockchain may provide a platform to the electric vehicle users to digitally negotiate with power suppliers to buy power at the best price.
However, before that, we need robust charging infrastructure and other modalities in place to create a virtual electricity market.
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