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GRID2.0: Power Struggles and Open Markets

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GRID 2.0 could be an chance revolutionize Society by catalyzing two critical resources…
Energy and Information!

People have been hearing more Mainstream Media buzz around Smart Grid or GRID2.0 initiatives. Some have even considered the finer points of the debates that have sprung out from the power struggles that are going on behind the scenes – mostly arising from the proposed methods and standards that would be applied to unify the current patchwork of disparate electrical transmission systems that we call “The Grid”. This need to get competing interests to actually cooperate on common initiatives is only one of the biggest challenges to overcome in leapfrogging over simple upgrades, and actually re-building our electrical distribution systems to meet the emerging needs of the 21st Century.

Some people will simply presume that these initiatives are just another example of the Corporate world wishing to cut it’s costs through new efficiencies, by updating equipment or infrastructure at the expense of Customers and Taxpayers. While this may well be true, the biggest opportunities (and risks to corporate hegemony) actually revolve around the emerging protocols and standards that threaten to democratize monopolistic hierarchies, open up delivery systems to smaller suppliers, and take full advantage of the enormous opportunities to fully optimize (and even automate) the basic economic principals of Supply and Demand with lightening fast methods based on remote sensing and network communications.

Basically, the entire electrical system stands on the edge of entirely re-defining the way it both supplies and delivers power. The deeper implications point to an opportunity to invert pyramids of power through a technical overhaul of a system that was initially designed to support monopolies, and closed markets for insiders.  Unfortunately this is one revolution that can’t be easily driven by Customer demand, because let’s face it….Most of us have little to no understanding of how electricity actually works, and can only hope that increasing technical failures, and new economic pressures will ultimately force the Utilities to upgrade into a more open framework for power distribution.

Pop-Open “The Trouble With Electricity” to learn more about the true nature of electricity.

Aging Distribution

So even though Electricity makes our entire modern world go round, it remains a surprisingly misunderstood resource, that we’ve come to easily think of as a “product” that simply flows through lines of distribution like some sort of moving fluid that can be increased or decreased to meet demand at our end. Few of us realize that it can’t be warehoused and released later to meet spikes in demand, or just turned down when there isn’t enough to go around. Rather it’s more of a “pressure” that must be constantly maintained to strict technical standards, even if that means running a wasteful surplus to cover off the shortcomings of a dumb/mechanical distribution system! All while also responding in real time to consumption and demand patterns (and spikes) by varying the supplied output back at it’s various sources.

What’s really exciting about overhauling the distribution of electricity is that, in the process of upgrading our power distribution grids, and our electricity consumption/production habits in general, as a necessary side-effect, we might also change the economics of traditional supply chains as well!  Perhaps even overhauling the power structures of Society itself, in a future where citizens can achieve new forms of energy independence! .

Although there currently isn’t any particular political will to enact such changes, nor to promote any ideologies behind such lofty ideals, perhaps we could borrow a few pages from an existing political movement, in order to conclude this initial introduction to the bigger subject of Social Change through Open Power Markets by considering the stated ideals of “Libertarianism. Perhaps even consolidating these general concepts into a bigger mission statement for open and free markets for Power.

Click to Consider the The Power of Social Change

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Libertarianism is a people’s movement and a liberation movement. It seeks the sort of open, noncoercive society in which the people, the living, free, distinct people, may voluntarily associate, disassociate, and, as they see fit, participate in the decisions affecting their lives. This means a truly free market in everything from ideas to idiosyncrasies. It means people free collectively to organize the resources of their immediate community or individualistically to organize them; . . . Liberty means the right to shape your own institutions. It opposes the right of those institutions to shape you simply because of accreted power or gerontological status.

Smart Grid 2.0

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Don’t underestimate :
The Power of GRID 2.0
A Driver of Social Change & Dissruptor for the Status Quo !

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Simplified Electricity Grid - North America

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