xGrid – Power Ledger deploys peer-to-peer renewable trading platform
Power Ledger has announced the deployment of its peer-to-peer (P2P) renewable energy trading platform into the US.
American PowerNet’s headquarters in Pennsylvania will use the xGrid platform to trade 35kW of solar power – garnered from both its office roof and carport – with neighbours connected in its office park to optimise clean energy for both carbon reductions and decreased electricity costs.
The deployment furthers the leader in decentralised, energy trading platforms, and winners of Richard Branson’s 2018 Extreme Tech Challenge’s goal of enabling a decentralised energy structure that allows regular people to actively participate in the growth of the industry and be accountable for the impact of energy on the environment.
The xGrid deployment is the latest U.S. project from Power Ledger and marks the introduction of its innovative P2P energy trading technology into the Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland Interconnection (PJM), the largest U.S. wholesale electricity market. The deal was made through Power Ledger’s partnership with Clean Energy Blockchain Network (CEBN), who will provide local, hands-on technical assistance with the deployment. Past projects from this partnership include deployments with Silicon Valley Power in Santa Clara, Calif., and Northwestern University in Chicago.
American PowerNet plans to commence the deployment this month under the existing deregulation rules with the cooperation of the local utility PPL, utilising its existing distribution system and connecting the solar assets by utilising platform data from pre-existing meters without the need for additional hardware, software or engineering fees.
This American PowerNet deployment comes on the heels of Power Ledger’s recent announcement around its Asset Germination Event (AGE) token, a blockchain-based token that is designed to open up the renewable energy market to retail investors. The AGE token will also open new sources of capital for energy projects and uses blockchain technology to maintain a secure asset and income register, with a view toward developing renewable energy infrastructure across the world.
Scott Helm, President of American PowerNet said: “Rather than just dump our excess solar power on to the grid, we’re thrilled we can now provide clean, sustainable power to our neighbours. Power Ledger’s P2P platform will optimize the offering for all of the participants. This type of structure can benefit all parties involved,” Helm stated, “and can be recreated in any deregulated territory where a business site has excess solar generation.”
Power Ledger Managing Director and Co-Founder David Martin said: “We believe the Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland Interconnection is a key market where P2P can become mainstream, and this project illustrates the growing consumer desire to invest in clean, renewable energy. We are appreciative of CEBN for the opportunity to work with American PowerNet, a pioneer in helping customers cut costs and carbon, and a company aiding us in our mission to democratise energy, and provide cheaper, cleaner power.”
All but two UK regions failing on school energy efficiency
Most schools are still "treading water" on implementing energy efficient technology, according to new analysis of Government data from eLight.
Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil, cutting expenditure by 4.4% and 0.9% respectively. Every other region of England increased its average energy expenditure per pupil, with schools in Inner London doing so by as much as 23.5%.
According to The Carbon Trust, energy bills in UK schools amount to £543 million per year, with 50% of a school’s total electricity cost being lighting. If every school in the UK implemented any type of energy efficient technology, over £100 million could be saved each year.
Harvey Sinclair, CEO of eEnergy, eLight’s parent company, said the figures demonstrate an uncomfortable truth for the education sector – namely that most schools are still treading water on the implementation of energy efficient technology. Energy efficiency could make a huge difference to meeting net zero ambitions, but most schools are still lagging behind.
“The solutions exist, but they are not being deployed fast enough," he said. "For example, we’ve made great progress in upgrading schools to energy-efficient LED lighting, but with 80% of schools yet to make the switch, there’s an enormous opportunity to make a collective reduction in carbon footprint and save a lot of money on energy bills. Our model means the entire project is financed, doesn’t require any upfront expenditure, and repayments are more than covered by the energy savings made."
He said while it has worked with over 300 schools, most are still far too slow to commit. "We are urging them to act with greater urgency because climate change won’t wait, and the need for action gets more pressing every year. The education sector has an important part to play in that and pupils around the country expect their schools to do so – there is still a huge job to be done."
North Yorkshire County Council is benefiting from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which has so far awarded nearly £1bn for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects around the country, and Craven schools has reportedly made a successful £2m bid (click here).
The Department for Education has issued 13 tips for reducing energy and water use in schools.