"$700 billion in new electricity generation will be needed over the next 20 years."
"Overall transmission modernization, including new higher capacity lines along with the communications technology, could cost as much as $1 trillion."
"A promise of $4.5 billion in economic recovery money for smart grid development, much of it going to help pay for installing new meters, has produced a rush by utilities and technology companies to start or accelerate projects."
All that came from just one Associated Press story this week.
You think there's a bit of interest in the smart grid?
Everyone's trying to get a piece of this thing.
For investors like me (and my readers), who have seen this coming for a while, taking profits has never been easier. It's really been like shooting fish in a barrel. We've had more double-digit winners in 2009 than weeks in the year.
And the media is pumping up the smart grid like crazy. . . selling it like an infomercial.
Here's how the AP categorized business interest in the opportunity:
"Hundreds of technology companies, fledgling venture capitalists, longtime corporate icons and almost every major electric utility company want to be part of [smart] grid modernization."
Given the serious implications for savvy investors, you should want to be a part of it as well.
This Is the Energy Internet
The technology the smart grid will usher in is also making mainstream news.
Here's how the same AP article described the future you've been waiting for:
. . . Home thermostats and individual appliances that adjust automatically based on the cost of power, and water heaters that can draw power from a neighbor's rooftop solar panel. They see a time when, on a scorching hot day, a plug-in hybrid electric car charges one minute and a few moments later sends electricity back into the grid to help avert a brownout.
Also coming are utilities that get instant feedback on a transformer outage or shift easily among energy sources from wind turbines to coal-burning power plants and back to the turbines when the wind begins to blow again.
And, from miles away, power companies will peer into homes and businesses, then automatically lower thermostats or adjust power use, depending on demand and prearranged agreements.
Indeed, the technology is impressive. Bob Gilligan, a VP at GE, says, "It's the marriage of information technology and automation technology with the existing electricity network. This is the energy Internet."
And according to Michael Jung, director of the highly successful smart grid start-up Silver Spring Networks, "The hurdles are not technological. They're really policy hurdles."
But even those are being worked on as Uncle Sam shows his support for the smart grid.
The stimulus alone dedicated $4.5 billion to the cause. And the DoE recently opened the funding gates when they raised the individual grant limit to $200 million. . . from just $20 million.
Plus, the energy bill working its way through Congress contains a minimum nationwide efficiency standard that will bolster the effort.
Bureaucratic bigwigs are also flexing their muscle. Obama and Biden have offered dozens of sound bites on the subject. Energy Secretary Chu has called implementing the smart grid an "urgent national priority."
That's not the only thing that's urgent— so is staking your claim.
I'm not joking when I say some of these smart grid stocks have gained 300% since Obama was elected. Take a look:
I've guided Alternative Energy Speculator readers to multiple double-digit wins in this sector. And I'll continue to cover it here in Green Chip Review as the trillion dollar market unfolds.
Call it like you see it,