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India’s Most Populous State, Will Launch Blockchain-Powered Energy Trading

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India’s Most Populous State, Will Launch Blockchain-Powered Energy Trading
India’s Most Populous State, Will Launch Blockchain-Powered Energy Trading

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With more than 200 million inhabitants, the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh ranks as the most populous one in the country. This state has the recent honor of testing the newly created solar energy trading platform powered by blockchain.

A New Way to Trade Power

The Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency (UPNEDA) will partner up with the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL). These two state-owned bodies will operate the first test run of the project. For now, the project will be tested on several pre-selected government buildings that have rooftop solar, situated in Lucknow city.

From the technical aspect, UPPCL and UPNEDA have the assistance of an Australian blockchain company by the name of Power Ledger. Coupled with that, they have the India Smart Grid Forum (ISGF) to help. The ISGF is a public-private partnership initiative started by India’s Ministry of Power. The initiative focuses on the development of smart grid technologies and will help UPPCL and UPNEDA alongside Power Ledger to facilitate the pilot run.

Allowing Consumers to Set Prices

Reena Suri, the executive director of ISGF, gave a public statement about the matter. They explained that the pilot project would serve as a demonstration of the “feasibility of energy trading through blockchain” by making use of solar panels on rooftops. From there, the people will be capable of trading power amongst themselves.

Suri explains that “Power Ledgers Platform Integrates with smart meter systems” that allow households to track energy trading in real-time as well as set their own prices. Households will also be capable of enabling settlements of surplus power transactions through the use of blockchain technology’s smart contract aspect.

The pilot project’s first phase is anticipated to be finished up in March 2020. The evaluation of the results will determine the success or failure of the product. Should it be a success, the plan is to introduce regulations that will promote peer-to-peer energy within Uttar Pradesh. The Australian company, Power Ledger, claims that its platform has seen widespread use across the world. Countries like Australia, Japan, Thailand, and even the US have all adopted the company’s technology, amongst others.

Blockchain, not Bitcoin

India has been taking several steps in order to try and embrace blockchain technology. Only a week ago, India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology made a public statement this. The Ministry told the public that India was preparing for a National Blockchain Strategy.

The move comes in light of the technological potential of blockchain technology in sectors like banking and trade finance. The Ministry praised blockchain technology for its many potential uses in many different industries but made no mention of cryptocurrency. The Indian government as a whole is very much pushing a “Blockchain, not Bitcoin” policy at this time.

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