The aim of this discussion group is to promote constructive engagement between readers involved in community energy work and researchers on projects related to community energy.
The Household-Supplier Energy Market (HoSEM) project has been chosen to open the discussion, with the approval of its lead researcher, Dr. Ruzanna Chitchyan.
The project involves researchers in several British universities, centred on Bristol, and has EDF and Energy4All as partners. It began in 2017 and runs until March 2019. The grant application document describes its aims, and can be viewed at http://gow.epsrc.ac.uk/NGBOViewGrant.aspx?GrantRef=EP/P031838/1
In brief, the project aims to research the feasibility of a democratised peer-to-peer (P2P) energy market. Its intention is to facilitate such a market by developing a novel technical platform using distributed ledger technology to support P2P household-level energy trading. This will be done by studying factors that would encourage households and organisations to participate in this market, by researching possible configurations of P2P trades and algorithms for appropriate trade optimisation, and by studying the social and economic implications of such a market. Among the relevant issues are the role of the major energy suppliers and of regulation and tariffs, the cost of P2P platforms, and the trust which users must have in them.
Some preliminary results from the project are described in “Goal-based automation of peer-to-peer electricity trading”, and a broad view of the underlying technology is provided in “Review of Blockchain Technology and its Expectations: Case of the Energy Sector”
Both papers can be accessed at https://www.researchgate.net/project/P2P-Energy-Trading-for-Renewables
The components of the project, such as P2P trading, distributed ledger technology, regulation and tariffs, and the role of EDF all invite discussion and comparison with related research.
The researchers involved are invited to introduce themselves and expand on the above summary, and to respond to comments and questions from readers which it is hoped will lead to informative and constructive discussion.
Marvin Ramokapane, Dr. Barney Craggs, and Professor Awais Rashid are working on the aspect of trust in HoSEM in the Cyber Security Group at Bristol University. Their focus is to understand what people would want and expect to find in the HoSEM system and see how to make these features available.
Dr. Denise Wilkins and Professor Mark Levine are part of the Social, Environmental and Organisation research group in the School of Psychology at the University of Exeter. Researching group participation in HoSEM, they explore how group identities affect trust and market participation. They examine how to make HoSEM work for the needs of different groups.
A note on the event signposted below: all readers who are interested in energy regulation for peer-to-peer trading and/or regulation on use of blockchain in energy are welcome to register for this free workshop.
25 June 2018 David Suckley