Boulder, Colorado – smart grid city

electric ultility pylon What the hell is a “smart grid city”? [via Worldchanging]

Well, maybe you could call it “Infrastructure2.0”, but whatever you call it, it’s a new (and hopefully more sustainable) way of looking at the issues of providing utilities to urban areas. According to Xcel Energy:

“The next-generation electricity grid will allow our company to better meet growing demands, address environmental challenges, maximize available resources and optimize the entire energy system. Ultimately, a “smarter” grid helps us serve our customers by creating more options for managing personal energy use, habits and costs.”

All hot air and sales jargon, you might be thinking. Well, Xcel seem to be walking the walk as well talking the talk – they’re going to make Boulder, Colorado into their first Smart Grid City, with the first phase predicted for completion this August. [image by tanakawho]

I’m pretty pleased to see the energy industry acting on these sorts of ideas instead of just paying them lip service, and I hope something similar starts appearing over here in the UK. Perhaps where Xcel leads, others will follow and surpass.