To tackle climate change, yearly investments in renewable electricity need to triple from around 330 bn € in to 1000 bn € by 2030. On top of that, effective measures can only be deployed through high public awareness and societal participation. However today, energy assets are hardly accessible to the public or non-energy related businesses.
Today, energy projects are large, illiquid and not easily tradable assets. In order to invest in them and co-own part of these projects, one needs to have strong financial power, legal representatives and a financial team conducting mergers and acquisitions. We want to solve all of these issues at the same time, by "tokenizing" energy assets. As these tokens represent part of the equity of an asset, they grant certain rights, like profit rights, rights to the carbon reduction effect and voting rights, similar to company stocks.
Using blockchain based tokens would help our solution, through many significant advantages: First, it could alleviate the complexity of transactions that is inherent to legal and transactional processes. Smart-contracts, which are basically automation scripts, can help to automate those processes and thereby greatly reduce the cost and complexity of a transaction, both in time and fees. This brings more liquidity to the assets, through faster trading and lower investment requirements. Secondly, Blockchain provides an immutable track of transactions, ensuring high transparency. It is helpful for both users wanting to know more about where their money goes, and for regulators wanting to verify transaction records. Lastly, Blockchains/Distributed Ledgers are a rising tool for financial products due to the above-mentioned advantages. Experts are planning a wide adoption of it in the near future. Therefore, it is a technology of choice for building a new fintech product, putting us already at the frontier of technology.
The platform should also be a tool to bring together individuals in a community. We plan on using it, along with social media channels, to provide our users with insightful information about renewable energy and sustainable investments. We want to build a community and interact with it regularly, therefore we will build a platform that allows us to do so, and that represents and helps them in the best way.
To build this project, I started by developing the smart contract with Remix IDE and tested it directly on the built-in Ethereum EVM from Remix (It was in my knowledge the fastest way to write and test a contract). I then made and deployed a website with next.js, chakra UI, and SWR for state management. I inspired myself from a Github template to build web3 apps with next js. To interact with the contract, I set up a web3 provider with @ethersproject and web3-react. I deployed the smart contract on the Ethereum Ropsten test net and wrote a few hooks to connect to the contract methods. SWR was an amazing tool since it allowed me to listen to blocks validation and update the site live. I was very constrained in time for this hackathon, so I took a lot of shortcuts and of course did not write any test - but I m overall very happy with the result :)