£100k for ‘smarter’ grid in rural US

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is providing more than $100 million (£63m) to help make the electricity grid smarter in rural parts of the country. The programme called ‘Rural […]

Register now!

By Jacqueline Echevarria

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is providing more than $100 million (£63m) to help make the electricity grid smarter in rural parts of the country.

The programme called ‘Rural Utilities Service’ will divide the loan between different electric companies in the states of North Dakota, South Carolina, Michigan and Indiana.

Some of the funding will be used to improve 1,000 miles of power distribution lines and the rest will be used for smart grid investment.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said: “Investments we make to provide rural communities with electricity are critical to our nation’s economy. Our commitment to rural electricity has powered our growing agricultural exports, a burgeoning bio-economy and the quality of life for rural Americans.”

USDA has invested $31 billion (£19.5b) in rural electric systems since 2009, out of which more than $1 billion helped finance renewable energy projects.