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New report details largest smart grid deployments around the world

SUBNET Solutions Inc | Friday, April 27, 2012

The Global Smart Grid Federation (GSGF) has released a new report on the current state of the smart grid.

GSGF, which comprises the national and regional smart grid associations from a number of countries, performed the study to determine the major challenges utilities will likely face as they continue to deploy new smart grid projects. Extensive research was done in Asia, North America, Europe and Australia to assess potential future issues.

"The report provides industry leaders with real-world best practices that can be applied to their own projects," said Guido Bartels, GSGF Chairman. "It also provides policy makers with insights into successful national smart grid activities, while providing regulators with models of innovative regulatory constructs that enable cost effective investments."

Bartels added that the report shows how both consumers and utilities will benefit from global cooperation to modernize aging electric infrastructure.

In the report, GSGF interviews several prominent smart grid project managers from around the world to identify the issues utilities will need to focus on most. The group found funding of national security objectives, environmental policy goals and job growth as the key issues for the majority of managers.

The report concluded that smart grids will increasingly be used to meet utilities' environmental, security and economic goals, which could give governments around the world the opportunity to work alongside utilities to improve all aspects of operations, from customer relations to efficiency.

A separate report, released recently by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), warns of the consequences that may arise if great measures are not taken to deploy smart grid technologies properly.

In its report on the current lack of investment in the smart grid, "Failure to Act: The Economic Impact of Current Investment Trends in Energy Infrastructure," the organization warns that without improvements, developed countries could see service interruptions and capacity bottlenecks become more frequent and unpredictable.

"Just like the roads we use every day, when there are bottlenecks or congestion in our electricity infrastructure, it affects everyone," said Andrew W. Herrmann,  president of ASCE. "And fewer disruptions mean real money to American businesses and households."

As more utilities begin smart meter deployments and substation automation installations, SUBNET will continue to provide expertise and software that ensures safe and secure integration of existing assets into the new grid. 

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