Stimulus money allocated for smart grid development

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced delivery of more than $47 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for eight projects to further smart grid demonstration projects in seven states.

Secretary Chu also announced $10.5 million in Recovery Act funding available for local governments to develop emergency preparedness plans for their electrical systems. Together, these efforts will help accelerate the development and implementation of a modernized and secure electrical grid, a critical piece in delivering renewable energy to American consumers and ensuring an effective, reliable and efficient electricity system across the country.

“Modernizing our electrical grid to make it stronger, smarter, more efficient and more secure is a crucial step in expanding renewable energy and creating jobs," said Secretary Chu. “These investments will help lay the foundation for American leadership in the clean energy economy.”

The $47 million in Recovery Act awards announced today will support existing projects that are advancing demonstration-scale smart grid technologies which will play an important role in modernizing the country’s electricity grid. This investment will add to the $17 million in funds the Department had awarded these projects in 2008 following a competitive award process.

By accelerating the completion timelines for each of the projects, the Recovery Act funds will help modernize the electric grid, allowing for greater integration of renewable energy sources while increasing the reliability, efficiency and security of the nation’s electricity transmission and distribution system.

The $10.5 million to increase the nation’s energy security is available for local governments to apply for competitive energy assurance grants ranging between $60,000 and $300,000. The funding will help cities and counties create jobs, while developing strong emergency response plans that they can rely on during energy emergencies and supply disruptions, which can have devastating economic, health and safety impacts on local individuals and businesses. This funding adds to the nearly $40 million previously announced for state-level energy assurance planning.



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