The way we use and pay for electricity will change in the future

My article on “smart meters” being installed on residential homes generated a lot of interest the other day, so I thought I would blog about it again.

This article comes from the NY Times online, “Google Taking a Step Into Power Metering,” talking about how internet giant Google is taking a step into the “smart grid” field. According to the NY Times article, “smart grid” is defined as, “digital technologies that seek to both keep the electrical system on an even keel and reduce electrical energy consumption.”

Google has developed a free Web service called “PowerMeter “which allows users to track their power usage at home and at their business.  

The point of all this “power monitoring” is to allow consumers to monitor their own power usage and perhaps schedule activities during times when power is cheaper.  The example given in the story is running your dishwasher at 2 a.m. when electricity rates may be lower.

The article also talks about when cars run on electricity and how that will be treated. Read the article in its entirety here: “Google Taking a Step Into Power Metering.”

As of Tuesday, it was reported by the NY Times, that  $4.4 billion of the stimulus money was allocated  for “smart” technologies” which included hiring people to install smart meters. I am guessing the installation would include residential homes as well as businesses, similar to what’s going on in California.

If you are interested in learning more about how the new stimulus money will be spent, aka “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,” the government has set up a website were citizen can track the money: http://www.recovery.gov/

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