January 15 (Renewables Now) - Saudi company ACWA Power said Saturday it has become the first utility-scale power producer to adopt SolarCoin, a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, but linked to solar energy.
The energy-referenced cryptocurrency has been created to incentivise global solar power production. One SolarCoin (SLR) is disbursed for 1 MWh of solar energy produced.
Already, ACWA’s 50-MW Bokpoort concentrated solar power (CSP) plant in South Africa and the 50-MW Karadzhalovo solar photovoltaic (PV) plant in Bulgaria are mining SolarCoins. More solar parks will join the list.
“As the price of solar coins appreciate, through more users agreeing to accept SolarCoin for value representation and transactions, claiming SolarCoins can become an additional and relevant revenue stream for solar power producers, resulting in an incentive for solar energy investors to install more generation capacity,” ACWA said.
The company pointed out that SolarCoin uses an ultra-low carbon blockchain technology called proof of stake time to maintain the open source ledger system. The proof-of-stake algorithm is significantly less energy intensive than methods used by other cryptocurrencies, such as proof-of-work.
Tomorrow, at the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week event, ACWA Power will host a workshop led by SolarCoin Foundation to explain how SolarCoin is mined and how the SolarCoin wallet works.