Obama Announces Billions for 'Smart' Power Grid
President Barack Obama on Tuesday announced $3.4 billion in grants to help build a "smart" electric grid.
"At this moment, there's something big happening in America, when it comes to creating a clean-energy economy," President Obama said. “But getting there will take a few more days like this one, and more projects like this one."
The projects include installing smart, energy-saving electric meters in homes, automating utility substations, and installing thousands of new digital transformers and grid sensors.
In all, 100 energy vendors, equipment manufacturers and other Smart Grid-related companies were named to divvy up the grant money. These companies fall into four categories: $1 billion for consumer-facing home energy monitors and other devices that will help average people make real-time conservation choices based on pricing; $400 million to retrofit energy distribution and transmission with digital and automation technology to increase efficiency and security; $2 billion dedicated to making sure the various components of the new Smart Grid can communicate and work together; and $25 million to expand Smart Grid manufacturing operations, like the assembly of smart meters, transformers and wireless devices.