On the grid

About 100 projects planned to modernize U.S. power transmission system

President Barack Obama recently announced $3.4 billion in government support for more than 100 projects aimed at modernizing the nation’s power grid.

According to The Associated Press, the United States Chamber of Commerce, which lately has been butting heads with Obama over climate legislation, backed the clean-energy initiative.

In late October, Obama toured a field of solar-energy panels near central Florida, where he urged greater use of technologies that will make America’s power-transmission system more suited to the digital age. He predicted that a more modern grid will give consumers increased control over their electricity usage and energy costs.

The 100 proposed projects, which were selected from a list of 400, include installing “smart” electric meters in homes, and installing thousands of new digital transformers and grid sensors.

The $3.4 billion grant will be distributed over the next two months, and the work is expected to take place over anywhere from one to three years, said Matt Rogers, the Energy Department official involved in the program.