Tauranga power forecast – sunny with a touch of SolarShare

P2 Power, New Zealand’s first peer-to-peer energy provider, today announced that it has expanded its innovative solar power sharing service to Tauranga.

P2 Power’s SolarShare technology lets consumers buy and sell excess solar power within their local communities. The Tauranga launch follows a successful pilot programme in Auckland which passed its first 100,000kWh solar sharing milestone in January this year.

SolarShare makes cleaner, cheaper solar energy a viable option for consumers who do not currently have solar panels or can’t afford the expense of installation. Those with solar panels are able to feed excess power back into the grid, where P2 Power manages the energy exchange, offering one of the highest buyback rates in the market, while at the same time delivering solar power to others at an affordable price.

P2 Power CEO Stu Innes says, “Our SolarShare technology uses real half hour smart meter data to match up solar generation with people’s electricity use, so SolarSharers know they are genuinely using locally produced green power, while energy exporters can be confident that their power is helping people adapt to using solar energy.”

“Joining SolarShare is very simple – simply sign up to benefit, and P2 Power does the matching – there is no need to sign up friends and family, though P2 Power loves it when you invite them too,” says Innes.

Innes say the P2 Power team is delighted that it can now begin introducing this approach to energy sharing to the rest of the country.

“We hope that one day all Kiwis will have the choice to take advantage of community-generated solar power,” says Innes.

In the summer months, P2 Power had guaranteed pilot users that at least 7% of their power would come from local solar production in Auckland. Innes says that in the prime summer period customers averaged more than double that.

“With Tauranga’s solar potential, we want to help the Bay of Plenty do even better,’ says Innes.

Innes says the company’s core mission is to provide transparency in the energy market and enable communities to work together for mutually beneficial deals.

“Consumers should not just mindlessly pay their power bills without knowing where it’s coming from. P2 Power informs consumers about how much of their energy is being produced locally, empowering them (pun intended) to prioritise renewables and have a meaningful impact in addressing climate change,” says Innes.

According to the company, SolarShare is just one way to help. P2 Power is developing new options to help people use cleaner, cheaper, community-oriented electricity, and will be bringing these to market in the near future.

Innes says P2 Power will launch SolarShare in other regions over the coming months.

emhTrade Ranks In Top 100 At The International SET Awards

It is with great pleasure to announce that we have placed in the top 100 companies in the international 2018 Start Up Energy Transition (SET) Awards.

The prestigious SET Awards is organised by the German Energy Agency, in cooperation with the World Energy Council, to identify the most promising start-ups working on energy transition and climate protection projects and technologies around the world.

The awards will be presented during the Tech Festival held in Berlin, Germany 16-17 April 2018. The Tech Festival is the annual summit of the SET initiative, which brings together a global network of innovators fighting climate change.

“We are a young company working to develop technologies that will create a new kind of energy market, where consumers have greater choice and control over the power they consume. To make it into the SET Awards top 100 the first time we enter is a fantastic validation of our approach,” says Stu Innes, CEO of emhTrade.

John Carnegie, executive director of the Business NZ Energy Council, says emhTrade is further proof that you don’t have to go overseas to find bright ideas.

“We are delighted that one of our members has demonstrated its technical ability on the international stage. New Zealand is a liberalised market with intense competition, and so our businesses are always looking to test models that can deliver better energy outcomes for consumers.”

“Too often people look to international markets for their inspiration, but our people are just as smart – or smarter in some cases – as the rest of the world. emhTrade’s placing in the SET Awards top 100 shows that wherever you are in the world, good ideas still count,” says Carnegie.

emhTrade has just completed its first pilot project in New Zealand, working with 200 electricity consumers to better understand their motivations and behaviour with regard to renewable energy use.

“The 200 participants in our solar energy exchange pilot achieved a significant milestone, with 100,000kWh solar energy shared since the test programme launched in April 2016. That’s enough clean, green, local energy to make around five million cups of tea or power over 100 houses for a month,” says Innes.

We are now extending our trials with some of New Zealand’s largest distribution companies.

emhTrade Chief Commercial Officer Jamie Silk says the pilot group will be able to use cleaner, cheaper and/or more local power, according to their preferences.

 “The experience and insights of our test users, together with behavioural science and machine learning, will help us quickly improve people’s ability to achieve their personal goals,” says Silk.

By exchanging information with distributors throughout the trials, Silk says emhTrade will gain a greater understanding of the value that can be created for consumers and the energy system as a whole.

The next emhTrade trial project starts in May and is part of a series of ongoing grid pilots we are launching across New Zealand.

Powerco and emhTrade Work Together on Innovative Energy Trials

We are excited to announce that we have recently agreed to collaborate with Powerco to explore new energy choices for customers.

Stu Innes, CEO of emhTrade, says it is clear that consumers are connecting socially and digitally for better environmental, community or financial outcomes.

“And electricity should be no different.”

“The agreement with Powerco enables us to work with consumers and the industry to make this a reality,” says Innes.

Powerco has invited all retailers to be involved in pilots and trials on its network, so both retailers and Powerco as a distributor, can understand what customers want in the future.

Powerco’s Asset Management and Network Transformation General Manager Ryno Verster says the company is excited to offer its network for trials that will ultimately help customers.

“As a distribution network we tend to not speak directly to all our customers so it’s important to also work with others to better understand what customers’ future energy needs might be.”

“New Zealand has a long history of managing network demand and associated investment through hot water load control. Our research programmes show us how new technologies, understanding consumer preferences and working with innovative partners can help us achieve even more,” says Verster.

emhTrade Chief Commercial Officer Jamie Silk says the pilot group, a small group of test users, will be able to use cleaner, cheaper or more local power, according to their preferences.

“The experience and insights of our test users, together with behavioural science and machine learning, will help us quickly improve people’s ability to achieve their personal goals,” says Silk.

By exchanging information with Powerco through the trial, emhTrade can better understand what value can be created for consumers and the energy system as a whole.

The pilot commences early in 2018 in Powerco’s Eastern region (covering Tauranga, the Coromandel and Eastern Waikato) and is part of a series of innovative grid pilots that we are launching launching across New Zealand.

emhTrade Appoints New Chief Product Officer

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emhTrade welcomes Martin White as our newly appointed Chief Product Officer. White was previously Head of Business Agility at Trade Me.

Stu Innes, CEO of emhTrade, says the company’s rapid growth requires a new level of customer interaction and rapid iterative product development. “We are in a new phase of growth requiring an unprecedented ability to quickly understand customer challenges and then work with them to test answers and deliver meaningful solutions.”

“For us it’s really exciting to have somebody of Martin’s caliber join us. Martin will lead our product development and ensure agility in all our customer relationships. His experience at Trade Me will be invaluable in helping us develop and effectively deliver consumer-driven power solutions and products,” says Innes.

The broader emhTrade business is about using technology to solve complex energy problems. Innes says that in mid-2017, after emhTrade won the Energy Innovation Challenge, it entered the Lightning Lab Electric Business Accelerator programme to better learn how to tackle one of the great global power industry challenges – the transactive grid.

“The ability to engage consumers and businesses with new technologies such as solar, electric vehicles and connected appliances will be key to reducing carbon emissions, increasing renewable electricity use, meeting community aspirations and affordable electricity,” says Innes.

In working with the energy industry, consumers and innovation experts through the Lightning Lab programme, Innes says it became clear what emhTrade needed to do.

“Since the Lightning Lab we’ve been steadily growing our team, ensuring that pretty much everyone who joins us is a polymath with the industry, systems and quantitative skills needed to deliver on our vision of an intelligent, transactive grid,” says Innes.

Matthew Harte, emhTrade co-founder and CTO, says the company wants to fundamentally change how people interact with energy generation and delivery.

“P2 Power is redefining how people engage with each other and how they buy their power – and the unsolicited feedback we get from our customers tells us we are on the right track. But this is all just the start of a transformation to help people use cleaner, cheaper, community-driven power.”

“Martin’s experience with Trade Me is exactly what emhTrade wants to achieve in the energy sector. It’s all about developing and delivering powerful, yet easy-to-use online services that makes a real difference to people’s lives,” says Harte.

The Journey To Energy Co-optimisation

We help people use cleaner, cheaper, community-generated energy, helping smooth supply peaks, cut costs and reduce carbon emissions.

Each year billions of dollars of unnecessary cost and billions of tonnes of Greenhouse Gas emissions are incurred in the global electricity supply chain.

We believe we can stop this waste using a co-optimisation platform that talks to consumers and their increasing number of smart appliances.

Consumers experience a mobile / web app that:
1. Understands their personal preference for cleaner, cheaper, community energy.
2. Advises them of the best time to use energy to meet their goals (and also automates connected devices).
3. Rewards them for their actions.

The energy supply chain gains a simple channel for price or other information to reach consumers in a meaningful way, triggering flexible demand to reduce emissions and costs.

emhTrade set up one of the world’s first peer to peer electricity retailers in 2016 and are now taking the platform – and the flexible grid – to the next generation.

emhTrade participated in the Lightning Lab Accelerator programme in 2017 for initial research and validation of our platform helping people align their energy consumption with their personal preferences, be they social, ecological or financial. By creating a sharing economy for energy assets, value is created along the entire supply chain, benefiting utilities and consumers alike.

You can watch the final Lightning Lab Electric Demo Day pitches here.

P2 Power Reaches 100,000kWh SolarShare Milestone!

In 2016, emhTrade set up one of the world’s first peer to peer electricity retailers. Today, we are proud to announce that the 200 participants in our solar energy exchange pilot have achieved a significant milestone, with 100,000kWh solar energy shared since the innovative programme first launched in April 2016. That’s enough clean, green, local energy to make around five million cups of tea or power over 100 houses for a month. 

P2 Power and emhTrade CEO Stu Innes says the company is thrilled to have reached the 100,000kWh milestone.

“P2 Power technologies lets people support each other by buying and selling surplus solar power. We think that consumers shouldn’t have to begrudgingly pay their power bill without understanding what they’re paying for and how it was generated,” says Innes.

P2Power uses SolarShare technology, alongside smart meters, to enable consumers to buy and sell excess solar power within their own community. Innes says that by breaking down the barriers to sharing cleaner, cheaper energy, P2 Power makes solar power a viable option for consumers whose homes are either not suitable for solar panels, or who can’t afford the expense of a solar power installation.

“With more and more people wanting to do their bit to tackle climate change, we believe that the New Zealand electricity market needs to change. P2 Power prioritises local, renewable sources and gives consumers the opportunity to buy local, green power first and grid power only when they need to,” says Innes.

According to Innes, P2 Power offers significantly higher buyback rates for solar owners’ excess energy than traditional retail electricity plans. Non-solar customers can save over 20 percent on energy when surplus solar energy is being generated, paying 14c / unit versus 18c / unit for grid power the rest of the time. During the summer months, P2 Power guarantees seven percent of their customers’ power will be charged at the lower solar rate.

P2 Power is currently available on Auckland’s Vector network. With the success of the initial pilot programme, P2 Power will now launch it in several other regions over the coming months.

“Eventually we would like to see this approach to sharing energy available throughout New Zealand, so all Kiwis can choose to take advantage of community-generated solar power,” says Innes.

Further information on this new approach to solar energy sharing is available at at p2power.co.nz or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/p2ppower/.

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