At present, people and businesses with rooftop solar systems have two choices. They can consume the energy they produce themselves or feed it back into the electrical grid. Enosi wants to give those who generate their own solar energy a third option — sharing it with others.
Recently it asked Solar Analytics, an Australian software company that works with rooftop solar owners to maximize the efficiency and profitability of their systems, to conduct a survey. 350 Australian prosumers — those who produce electricity — and 350 consumers — those who want more clean energy — were asked about their attitudes regarding energy sharing. The results were startling.
- 90% of consumers and prosumers were interested in shared solar, with 92% of prosumers and 83% of consumers saying they would switch energy retailers to share solar.
- Prosumers do not feel they are treated fairly by electricity retailers and most are interested in the idea of shared solar as a way to take control of energy resources.
- 81% of prosumers indicated that they would rather share their excess solar energy with another person or organization than sell it back to their electricity retailer.
- 80% of consumers indicated that they would be interested in the idea of purchasing excess solar energy from prosumers.
Enosi’s energy sharing platform allows prosumers to sell their excess solar power to consumers through blockchain-based peer-to-peer trading. It puts energy choice in the hands of households and communities rather than leaving it up to large energy retailers. Empowering prosumers will lead to lower cost and cleaner electricity for all.
“This data is extremely significant because it illustrates the reality of the situation, that most people would rather support local organizations or their own communities than a commercial entity,” said Steve Hoy, CEO of Enosi. ”With this data in mind, we have great confidence in our model…..as it will help to establish a new, low cost, sustainable system for sharing and trading excess energy.”
CleanTechnica reached out to Enosi to clarify a few points about how it operates. In particular, we wanted to know if the traditional grid was involved in the transactions between prosumers and consumers. Steve Hoy responded, “Yes, this is spot on. This is being done over the grid and within current regulations. This is the attraction as we can drive cleaner cheaper energy today and a lot more innovation. We need no regulatory changes. Yes, there will be grid charges – there is no way around that until you get regulatory change or most people have batteries or can use their EV’s to recharge them.
“However, by concentrating on the energy retailer sector like we are, we can break the back of oligopolistic pricing, give energy customers the choice of clean energy at same or better pricing. Effectively we are allowing anyone to become an energy retailer – this is a massive game changer – small retailers can compete on price, products and services, communities can organize their own energy needs, solar farms can go direct to retail customers, businesses with large customer bases can now offer energy. ”
This is a brilliant idea — putting energy producers together with energy consumers so more people can participate in the clean energy revolution. But don’t expect this idea to take off in the US any time soon. Most utility company executives would rather commit seppuku than allow individuals to have access to their grid. As America heads backwards into the glory days of coal power, any progressive regulatory changes anywhere outside the state of California will be few and far between.
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