Updating Our Electricity Grid

Our electricity grid was designed over 100 years ago. Times have changed. Today, clean, renewable energy can be harnessed right where we live, so electricity doesn’t have to come from polluting power plants miles away. But we have to modernize our grid to take advantage of it.

CLF in Action

CLF is tackling grid modernization in New England from all angles. We’re pushing to update old pole-and-wire systems to better incorporate local solar and wind energy. We’re urging incentives for utilities to add smart meters to improve communication between the electrical system and homes and businesses. And we’re working with the state agencies that oversee our public utilities throughout New England to change energy policies to better reflect 21st-century technology and needs.

Implementing smart policies — and allowing much-needed innovation within this industry — will save families and businesses money on their electricity.

What’s at Stake

An aging electrical grid means that families and businesses can’t take advantage of new technology. Modernizing our electricity grid allows us not only to save energy on our monthly bills, but to reduce our carbon emissions in the process. A modern electric grid will facilitate our transition to clean, renewable energy.

A grid outfitted with smart meters — which facilitate two-way communication between your house and the electrical grid — would let families run appliances when energy prices are lowest, and allow businesses to more easily incorporate energy efficiency measures into their daily operations. It would also help utilities better integrate more local renewable energy sources, like solar panels, into the grid. Ultimately, this would mean that we don’t have to run our dirtiest power plants on the hottest (or coldest) days of the year to keep the lights on.

Grid modernization is a mix of policy change and infrastructure investments that will allow us to fully transition to using clean, renewable energy. With a modern electric grid and the right utility incentives, we can support energy efficiency, keep the lights on no matter how hot our summers get or how cold our winters, and keep our air, water, and climate safe.