August 2010 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch In July, the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) at the U.S. Department of Energy announced $92 million in new funding for 43 research projects in 18 states aimed at long-term solutions for improving how the nation uses and produces energy. The agency, originally authorized by Congress in 2009, opened for business last Spring. This announcement completed the third and final cycle of the office’s Recovery Act funding.
June 2010 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch Federal energy loan guarantees and grant programs can produce both intended (subsidies for research and development) and unintended (market distortions) effects on technology development and job creation, along with giving promising research a needed boost in capital.
Smart Grid Implementation: Strategies for Success The United States is well underway with the modernization of its energy grid, driven by $4.5 billion in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grants and other Congressional legislation. Smart Grid needs to be implemented quickly enough to provide optimal value improving delivery and reliability, and also contribute to the nation’s energy security by tapping more domestic and renewable providers.
April 2010 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch In an effort to increase energy efficiency, the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 requires all light bulbs to be 25 to 30 percent more efficient by 2014 than they are today. In effect, the federal law will ban incandescent light bulbs.
March 2010 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch Recent developments surrounding Boulder’s SmartGridCity highlight some of the challenges inherent to addressing national energy priorities within state-level regulatory constituencies.
January 2010 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch The Department of Energy (DOE) issued the final rule amending regulations for the Loan Guarantee Program, which Congress established to stimulate the expansion of energy sources that do not emit greenhouse gasses and the creation of innovative energy technologies. This final rule, which was announced December 7, will allow financial institutions and other investors to actively participate in the program.
ENERGY: MAKE THE SMART GRID WORK FOR VIRGINIANS When President Obama announced $3.4 billion in new federal grants to upgrade the nation’s power grid last month, he did so amid many references to 21st century technology. A “smart” power grid based on new technology will be essential to meeting the nation’s energy needs over the coming decades. But if such a critical implementation is to happen smoothly, decisionmakers would be wise to learn past experience to ensure that the new grid does all that is required of it.
SELLING SMART GRID TO AMERICANS President Obama's recent announcement of $3.4 billion in grants to help modernize the nation's energy grid was steeped in references to 21st-century technology.
November 2009 – Energy Regulation Trendwatch President Obama on October 26 announced $3.4 billion in grant awards for Smart Grid modernization. The nation’s largest such investment to date, funded under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, went to support 100 projects, out of some 400 applicants.
Next Steps For Smart Grid Smart Grid technology is coming. Over the next few years 17 million American homes will be equipped with advanced electric meters enabling two-way digital communication between your home and your utility. It’s not a moment too soon because the current business model for electric power is a relic of the 1930s. Utilities go on contract for routine demand. They haul coal to burn at power stations or lash up nuclear reactors to supply that demand.