Technology is an amazing thing. It makes our lives more convenient in hundreds of ways and it is ever growing. It also has paramount applications in the field of energy conservation. The government is investing in top of the line energy conservation technology which will ultimately create more jobs, stimulate the economy, and save money. Smart Grid technology is among the elite methods of preserving and redistributing energy in an efficient manner. In the process of Smart Grid utilization, our nation’s electric system will move from a centralized, producer controlled network to a less centralized, more consumer interactive model. However, integration will be only more and more expensive as the costs of new generation and delivery infrastructure increases and climbs sharply. According to The Battle Group, which is a consulting group that specializes in finance, regulation, and economics, the infrastructure alone will require payments of $1.5 trillion over the next 20 years. These numbers make the reality of Smart Grid deployment unlikely, but popular awareness has been heightened by projects of all sizes. People will demand more control over their energy choices if they know what’s possible in the energy conservation realm. Just inform the people what they pay for and how they can pay less–that’ll start a movement and create zealousness of sorts.
The Smart Grid represents the creation of a near-term marketplace in the tens of billions of dollars. Technological assistance, like Smart Grid technology, is needed anywhere energy performance can be enhanced, efficiencies gained or innovations enabled. It needs popular awareness however. The Smart Grid opens the door to consumer choice while reducing the cost of delivered electricity. It also makes other already present natural energy producing methods like wind and solar more effective sources for clean and renewable energy. So how do we make this much needed step in energy conservation a reality? Federal and State legislation can have an enormous impact on the speed and efficiency of Smart Grid deployment, and the people can coerce the politicians. The Obama administration has recently unveiled a plan called: “A Policy Framework for the 21st Century Grid: Enabling Our Secure Energy Future.” The steps towards deployment have been taken, but popular awareness is still necessary to make the plan a complete reality and part of our society. Although the complete inculcation of Smart Grid technology is far away, if city after city employs the technology, the macro idea will not seem so far fetched and distant.