Puerto Rico – the next blockchain uthopia
Blockchain is helping restore power in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.
Power Ledger, an Australia-based company has hired a grid resiliency and security expert to lead power restoration efforts in Puerto Rico. The startup is using blockchain technology to do this.
More broadly, Puerto Rico is looking to blockchain startups to help give its economy a boost following devastating hurricane destruction and an ongoing recession. It’s luring entrepreneurs to the island by offering tax incentives, holding conferences, and launching an advisory council. Since the tax exemptions were put into place, more than 800 businesses have relocated to Puerto Rico.
The Australian startup is helping Puerto Rico recover after nearly eight months of power outages on the island. Hurricane Maria destroyed much of the area’s infrastructure and its electrical grid.
What is the role of blockchain technology on the island? Power Ledger aims to help local companies to market energy from micro-networks (such as solar panels) to one another using blockchain. The acquisition of energy can be conducted using ‘traditional’, crypto-currency or ‘exchange’ money for labor. Puerto Rico looks for start-ups that work with this technology to boost its economy after the devastating destruction of the hurricane and economic recession.
Blockchain technology is generally defined as a distributed, open ledger capable of efficiently, verifiably and permanently recording transactions between two parties. Communication thus takes place between peers, rather than through a central entity / authority, and all transactions are visible to any individual who has access to the system.
So how will this work in Puerto Rico? Power Ledger would help companies trade power from microgrid resources (like solar panels) with one another using the blockchain. People will be able to buy power in cash, cryptocurrency, or even labor.