Don Tapscott: “The killer app for blockchain could be saving the planet…”
Don Tapscott knows a thing or two about crypto — so when he throws out a tip it’s worth listening to. He thinks Exergy could be the ULTIMATE use case for blockchain — and here’s why.
Don Tapscott is co-founder of the Blockchain Research Institute, the global center for thought leadership on blockchain, and an advisor to LO3 Energy. We spoke to him about his views on the future of energy.
Why crypto should be interested in the energy industry
“Crypto is not all about currencies, it’s not about selling a token on an ICO to enable funding of your company. They are two important types, but there are many more. I think where some of the biggest opportunity lies will be in tokens that provide fundamental utility and a completely new business model.
Energy is what powers our existence, literally. And if we can change the way that works, we can change the world.”
Why we need to change how energy works
“The industrial age was an age of standardization where something in the center pushed out standardized units to passive recipients. We pushed out centralized energy to ‘dumb’ recipients and we’re moving into a new age that’s more distributed, where intelligence is built into the system.
Collaboration is what drives the modus operandi of entire industries, rather than powerful institutions that are operating on a command and control model.
To me, this really represents the digitization and democratization of energy. I think it could have foundational effects and create all kinds of bold new companies, like AirBnb and Lyft, only in the energy industry.”
How blockchain can to make that possible
“Blockchain represents a new platform for the transaction and management of assets, and trust between parties and devices is not achieved by an intermediary, it’s achieved by cryptography and collaboration and some clever code.
The grid of the future really runs on data and to be able to have these renewable resources, we need to dynamically manage all of the energy sources and devices at the edge of the grid.
If we have data then we can have intelligent devices that are learning, that are doing transactions and that can manage themselves at the edge of the grid. Data is the key to moving towards a distributed power grid.
AirBnB and others have thrived on top of a new information economy. There was democratization of information and access created by the Internet and people had this excess capacity, a couch or a car, but they couldn’t monetize it. These companies enabled them to do so.
What if we could capture all of the data that we create about energy use, think about how valued that would be…”
How Exergy can provide a solution
“I think that Exergy is at the center of this transformation of the energy industry.
The XRG token is the ultimate sort of utility token in a sense. It’s a permission token that enables people to put their data on the Exergy platform and to take it off of the platform, so it really turns data into a digital asset within the industry.
We’re talking about a utility token that provides some really important functionality in transforming the power grid and ultimately this could become a sort of natural asset token where the data, represented by the token, really represents energy itself.
It’s going to have an impact on the physical world. It’s not just moving money around.”
I get a lot of requests to advise companies and I can’t accept even a hundredth of them because I have limited time. I have to be very choosy about what I get involved in. Exergy, I decided, was one of a handful I would support because I think this company is at the center of the transformation of something really important — not just the power grid, not just the energy industry but the way we find energy resources to power our economy and to manage our lives.”
Why energy is the killer application for blockchain
“This is something that’s worthwhile. I’ve often said to my kids you want to live a principled life of consequence and I think this is a company that is functioning according to some very strong principles and, if it’s successful, will be enormously consequential in the world.
I hope the crypto world will understand it’s really about the transformation of our economy, changes to the deep architecture of entire industries and corporations. This is where the really big opportunity for prosperity, for an economic impact, lies.
This is really not just about financial return from some ICO. This is really about the future of the planet and I think in some ways energy and sustainability.
Maybe the killer app for blockchain may be saving the planet.”