Networking Energy

React Network
3 min readJan 31, 2023

Data is the new oil. But ironically, the energy industry is decades behind.

Our electricity data infrastructure is broken. Users have very little, if any, insight into their energy consumption. Retail electricity providers have to pay exorbitant prices to access customer data. Utilities monitor outages through phone calls. And what little data is available is bespoke and low quality.

We know that we need to turn the grid edge into a resource for power grids.

However, to do so, we need three keys: connections to flexible resources, orchestration of these resources, and data to understand baselines, responses, and performance measurement & verification.

Our energy data infrastructure was built for a pre-internet society. Data pulls are still often done manually. Data is not streamed in real-time; meter data is available at the earliest the next day, often not until the end of the month. The consumption data is typically broken out into 15-minute intervals, with little insight into patterns and individual resource consumption.

Consumption data is bespoke to each utility. There are ~2,900 electric utilities in the United States alone, with very little data standardization between them. Customers do not own this data; the utility does. As the utility has a monopoly on data, it often sells for very high prices which reduces the ability to drive better energy experiences for the customer. Only 1 utility in the United States provides interval data and data access for energy management via API — Fort Collins Utility in CO.


Data from distributed energy resources (DERs) is largely verticalized. Typically, the OEM is the only default organization with access to the DER data. DERs will continue to proliferate in our homes and businesses: rooftop solar, energy storage, EV chargers, and electrified appliances. This data is siloed, limiting the ability to drive incremental value to consumers and improve the energy system's operation.

But the value of energy data is enormous.

Studies have shown that consumers can save 6–18% on energy costs just through behavioral incentives associated with real-time data.

Arcadia, the largest utility data platform, recently raised a Series E at a $1.5 billion valuation. Arcadia is solving a critical problem by standardizing utility and energy data and making it available via a unified API. However, Arcadia is still dependent on existing utility data. We need to build new sources of data to scale dynamic participation across a decentralized energy system.

Energy data and connectivity is the key to unlocking the decentralized, agile grid of the future, enabling prosumers to become active participants in the energy system.

It unlocks whole-building optimization, lowering costs for consumers.

It can help inform better forecasting models for grid operators to reduce forecasting errors.

It enables us to better understand and optimize the distribution grid, and gain visibility to the many DERs proliferating across the grid edge.

It allows for companies to offer better services to consumers, whether it be energy efficiency or electrification services.

It turns buildings into power plants, allowing their distributed energy resources and devices to participate as a resource in power markets to contribute to grid stability.

The data and connectivity layer of the grid edge is the single most important infrastructure to build in the 2020s. It empowers customers, improves grid stability, creates new resources, and facilitates the further decentralization of the energy grid while reducing dependence on the legacy, monopoly energy system.

The React community is building this infrastructure.



React Network

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