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Easy life, complex technology

Welcome to the world of blockchain!

Across a leafy neighbourhood in Brooklyn, locals such as 54 year-old real estate broker and solar energy proponent, Michael Guerra, generates and trades all his own energy with his next-door neighbour. This allows Michael to obtain the energy he needs from renewable sources and also sell excess electricity credits, bypassing the electricity supplier, and providing a grid that functions independently, even during broad power failures.

American start-up energy-tech company LO3 Energy enlisted residents’ participation in this radical scheme through a combination of modern technology (identifying homes with rooftop solar installations through Google Earth) and traditional methods (securing their buy-in through door knocking).

Powered by blockchain, their community initiative now enables hundreds of local homes and businesses to choose their preferred energy sources from a network of suppliers to increase the amount of clean, renewable energy in Brooklyn. The virtual trading platform enables locals to sell excess electricity credits from their systems to buyers in the group, bypassing the electric company energy supplier.

For people like Michael, who initially only installed solar panels to reduce his air-conditioning costs in summer, it’s a no-brainer and the way of the future.

In some industries and applications, there is little doubt that emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchains have the potential to radically reshape supply chains and, as a consequence, industry norms themselves.

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We are only starting to understand how ‘digital’ will fully impact people’s lives and work practices. What we do know is that this is an inevitability and it is an unstoppable force, and will forever change the way we live, interact, design, build and maintain our homes, workplaces and precincts in the future.

This fourth edition of our Buildings of the Future series explores not only how we design, construct and maintain our buildings, but how we can use data to amplify business performance.

Watch our video, explore our insights below, or download the full report.

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Explore our insights

There's a lot for us to consider

The fact is, it is not an option as to whether to evolve. Failure to change will mean failure to thrive, but it can be overwhelming to know where and how to prioritise. For more information on where to focus your investment, explore our Bottom Line Benefits paper.

The value in IoT for smart buildings lies not in the creation of hundreds more internet connected sensors, but rather new technology that leverages existing data from existing assets to optimise operations and amplify business performance, with the end-users being at the forefront of all decision-making.

Groundbreaking technology is already here, and with the use of blockchain we can create true value. The connection of blockchain to IoT is when technology will accelerate at lightning speed.

Currently, we are paddling in the kiddie pool, testing the water to see what’s possible with energy savings, but the light is yet to truly switch on. When it does, get ready – blockchain’s impact on buildings will radically change the spaces in which we live, work and play in the future and how we amplify performance through data-enabled knowledge and insights. 


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