Greentech Media and its research arm, GTM Research, had the pleasure of providing a keynote address at last month's inaugural Municipal Smart Grid Summit held in Bonita Springs, FL. In addition to supporting the conference as keynote speaker and media partner, we surveyed the nearly 100 municipal utility executives in attendance about their current and future smart grid deployment plans. The full collection of survey data can be downloaded here.
In addition to the much larger in size, but far fewer in number IOUs (investor-owned utilities), the roughly 2,000 municipal utilities throughout the U.S. represent a growing opportunity for smart grid hardware and software vendors. Though these deployments, in most cases, are significantly smaller, a growing number of smart grid vendors are looking at the muni market as an area of opportunity in light of factors such as different regulatory requirements and, often times, the presence of more advanced communications networks to build upon (as an example, see this article about EPB written earlier this year by GTM Research analyst Emma Ritch).
Though we don't view the installation of smart meters as equaling the creation of a true smart grid, it is usually the first step to be taken on the path toward smart grid deployment. The chart below shows when those surveyed expect to see smart meters reach a majority of their electric customers.
It's also interesting to see the priority that distribution automation and grid optimization has among those surveyed. The chart below identifies municipal utility executives' view of the most important smart grid applications. (Note: GTM Research has an in-depth report on the topic of Distribution Automation scheduled to be published in October.)
Tomorrow, August 30 at 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST, Greentech Media, GTM Research and Webinar sponsors eMeter and Siemens will be providing a free web-based seminar discussing the results of this survey. You can register for the Webinar here.
The team behind MSGS is gearing up for RSGS (Rural Smart Grid Summit) in September. This is the second year for RSGS, and Greentech Media / GTM Research is looking forward to participating in the conference. Stay tuned for similar survey results later this fall from the rural/coop utility executives in attendance at RSGS.
Again, the full survey can be downloaded at no cost here.