Locke, Chu Announce Significant Steps in Smart Grid Development
WASHINGTON - U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu today announced significant progress that will help expedite development of a nationwide "smart" electric power grid.
A modern, reliable, secure, affordable and environmentally sensitive national energy infrastructure is fundamental to our quality of life and energy future. Yet since 1982, growth in peak demand for electricity has exceeded the growth and development of our electric grid. This demand growth will continue due to a growing population; larger homes with burgeoning IT requirements and more elaborate appliances; and the growth of electric vehicles; as well as, the day-to-day energy required to power our hospitals, schools, industries and other necessities of life.
If Edison were transported in a time, he would be amazed by progress in lighting and sound recording, such as the LED light or the iPod. On the other hand, he would easily recognize much of the basic technology behind today’s power system.
As one of the windiest states in the country, Kansas is a great place to harness wind and solar power. And through the Department of Energy's Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program, the Resourceful Kansas team is teaching the rest of the state about all the technologies that are out there.
Houston-based Texas Medical Center recently celebrated the completion of an energy-efficient, 48 megawatt combined heat and power system. The Medical Center projects that new system, funded in part by a $10 million Recovery Act grant, will help save about $200 million in energy costs over the next 15 years — a big number, even by Texas standards.