Illinois passes landmark smart grid legislation


The General Assembly has overridden Governor Quinn's veto and passed the Energy Infrastructure Modernization Act (Senate Bill 1652). A separate trailer bill adding provisions that raise the bar on utility performance standards also passed.

The ground-breaking legislation authorizes implementation of a 10-year, $2.6 billion investment program by ComEd to strengthen the existing electric system, while adding new digital smart technology.

According to ComEd President and Chief Operating Officer Anne Pramaggiore, passage of SB 1652 will offer the following benefits to Illinois residents:

  • Illinois residents will be back to work thanks to specific provisions that mandate more than 2,500 statewide jobs at the peak of the grid's build-out.
  • A smart grid will improve overall system reliability, reducing outages and improving power restoration while allowing consumers to save money through a set of new smart grid-related efficiencies, such as new pricing plans and rebates.
  • Funding for energy efficiency programs, and use of solar and wind power will increase.
  • ComEd will provide $50 million and Ameren will provide $10 million in programs designed to help low-income families and seniors over 10 years.
  • $200 million will be invested in the "undergrounding" of overhead lines, tree-resistant overhead conductors and other storm hardening solutions to strengthen the distribution system after 2011's historic storm season of 2011.

The passage of this legislation is just the beginning for ComEd.

"[Now] we begin the serious work of developing a smart grid and smart meter system," Pramaggiore said. "We intend to work closely and collaboratively with our partners and stakeholders to bring all perspectives to bear as we work to create an electric service model that is more reliable, more flexible, greener and more customer focused."

For more:
- see this blog 

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Black & Veatch: Smart meters could save ComEd customers $2.8B