This interview is part of our new Blockchain In Energy series, where we interview the world's leading thought leaders on the front lines of the intersections between blockchain and energy.
In this interview we speak with Evan William, CEO of The Terawatt Foundation, to understand how his company is using blockchain to transform the energy business, and what the future of the industry holds.
1. What's the story behind Terawatt? Why and how did you begin?
EW: The story begins a few years ago during the early ICO boom when I noticed a plethora of projects that were more or less the same (exchanges, real estate, supply chain, etc) and not many were aimed at helping the environment. I wanted to create something different with extremely limited to no competition. Something that also helped use blockchain technology to make our world a better place, like Vitalik Buterin intended when he created Ethereum. After extensive research I realized no one had done anything related to the fastest growing renewable energy category, which is actually LED lighting! A light bulb went off, pun intended, and it was off to the races.
2. Please describe your use case/s and how Terawatt uses blockchain:
EW: For starters, we have created a patent-pending LED purchase verification system which allows us to reward people and businesses (with our token) who verify on the blockchain that they have upgraded their current CFL, MH/HPS, or Fluorescent bulbs to more energy efficient and eco-friendly LED bulbs. We have partnered with over 8 LED manufacturers (many more to come) to make this process easy and streamlined. Terawatt is also working on building a DAO which will act as a global decentralized fund for utility companies, businesses, and energy customers to help them overcome the sometimes higher upfront cost of LEDs. Something like this has never been done before so it is pretty exciting to be a part of.
3. Could you share a customer/user that benefits from what you offer? What has your service done for them?
EW: What immediately comes to mind is a medium sized business that wants to switch to LED lighting in all of their stores but simply doesn't want to spend all that money upfront. Through our token rebate process and DAO fund, we are able to offset that high initial cost and get LED bulbs into their hands for much less money, and give them a rebate on top of that. We've helped many local and global businesses source affordable LEDs and are already helping speed up global LED adoption. These companies now benefit from lower energy bills, lower maintenance costs, and are eligible for tax incentives for helping reduce their carbon footprint.
4. What other blockchain use cases in the energy sector are you excited about?
EW: Terawatt aims to tackle other renewable sectors like Solar, Wind, Electric Vehicles after proof of concept is achieved with L.E.D.s. I think these are all very exciting, we chose LEDs as you can see they are the fastest growing renewable sector and no one is focusing on it right now except for us!
5. Where will Terawatt be in 5 years?
EW: In five years, we expect to be an industry titan with multiple arms branching into the many renewable categories listed above. We are currently working on a partnership with one of the 10 largest LED manufacturers in the world which would definitely speed up that process. Right now we are primarily focusing on product development and building a strong foundation from which we can really make a difference.