On April 5, Chile's National Energy Commission (often referred to by its Spanish acronym, CNE) announced the launch of a blockchain pilot project aimed at boosting the transparency, accuracy, and security of data relating to the nation's energy sector.
The trial will involve CNE employees taking datasets from an existing energy data platform called Energía Abierta, or Open Energy. After software is used to verify their accuracy, those data will be hashed and written to the Ethereum blockchain. Members of the public will be able to access them through one of several GUIs.
In other words, the data in question are not written directly to the blockchain when they are generated but, rather, put onto a conventional database, from which a human actor copies them before they are recorded to the blockchain.
This workflow carries with it the risk that vulnerabilities in the Open Energy system and verification software, as well as human error, could lead to inaccurate information being logged on the blockchain. However, the decision to conduct this pilot is a clear expression of interest by the Chilean state in blockchain technology.
In announcing the launch, Energy Minister Susana Jiménez said:
"We at the Ministry of Energy are interested in bringing [blockchain] technology down from a conceptual level to a concrete use case, with the understanding that leading experts consider it the most disruptive technology of the last decade, one which can become a part of our daily lives in the coming years."
The CNE, a public organization, works with the Ministry of Energy but operates as a distinct body.
In its initial phase, the project will see data relating to national grid capacity, average market prices, residential energy-generating installations, and other topics recorded to the blockchain.
Translations by author.