A neighbourhood in Brooklyn now manages its own micro-grid, allowing residents to purchase solar energy directly from their neighbours.
Renewable energy is becoming increasingly widespread, and cheaper. That’s good news, considering the fact that we urgently need to cut our dependence on fossil fuels if we wish to avoid irreparably disrupting our climate.
A new peer-to-peer energy sharing community could help make New York greener, one roof at a time. The TransActiveGrid project is based in Brooklyn, and is the fruit of the cooperation between LO3 Energy and ConsenSys.
The concept allows residents with solar panels on their roof to sell energy directly to their neighbours, without the administrative or financial burden of a middle man. The power goes directly from one house to another and payment happens with blockchain, a system that allows for the secure and transparent record of online transactions.
“If you produce energy far away, there’s a lot of losses, and you don’t get the value of those electrons. But if they’re right across the street, there’s a lot of environmental and system efficiency that’s being realized from being very close to one another.”
– Lawrence Orsini, founder of LO3
Beyond the environmental benefits and the community-forming aspect, microgrids also present an important advantage: resilience. Microgrids are connected to the traditional grid and can receive power from it, but in case of an emergency, they can function in ‘island mode’ and tap into the local energy supply. This ensures continuous access to electricity, regardless of natural disasters or other incidents.
Find out more about TransActiveGrid in the clip below.
For more about blockchain and the extraordinary role it could play in making our world more socially and economically sustainable, check out our article: Blockchain: A Digital System For Real World Sustainability.