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On the Hill/Around the Nation
International News
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
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NEMA Takes the Stage at the GridWise® Global Forum
by Richard O’Neill

Gridwise Global ForumOn November 8, the second annual GridWise® Global Forum kicks off at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C. Billed as an "unrivaled international gathering of policy and corporate leaders, technology innovators, legislators, regulators, consumer and environmental advocates," the forum will convene to examine the policy elements necessary to deliver on the promise of a Smart Grid.

Featured on the agenda are a number of NEMA members, including:

  • Beth Comstock, Chief Marketing Officer & SVP, General Electric
  • Thierry Godart, Vice President and General Manager of Energy Automation and Smart Grid Applications, Siemens Energy
  • Philip Mezey, President and COO, Itron, Inc.
  • Gregoire Poux-Guillaume, CEO, Alstom Grid
  • Gary Rackliffe, Vice President of Smart Grids in North America, ABB, Inc.

Sessions featured during the forum will cover: Energy Industry in Transition: Models for Success; Lessons Learned: What the ARRA Data Tells Us; Guarding the Grid: Smart Grid and Grid Vulnerability; and, and Smart Grid Data: Insights, Privacy, or Both?

The electricity that powers everything from a single appliance to our vast, intricate national defense system is such an integral part of our daily lives that we rarely think about where it’s generated or how it’s delivered. Today, generation occurs at large, central fossil fuel plants, hydroelectric dams, and nuclear facilities. It then travels many hundreds of miles along an enormous, transmission and distribution lines throughout the nation—called simply the grid. Tomorrow, we’ll need an even more complex and sophisticated infrastructure that will continue to power our digital economy but in a cleaner, more reliable, and more affordable way—a Smart Grid.

To unlock the potential of a smart grid, we can choose from a multitude of hardware, software, and telecommunications tools. These technologies range from complex sensors that yield new and unique data and are woven into all aspects of the grid, to elegant user interfaces that give operators and consumers alike simple tools for making better decisions.

Specifically, a Smart Grid will:

  • give consumers the power to manage their own electricity use,
  • reduce peak demand by actively managing consumer demand,
  • balance consumer reliability and power quality needs,
  • mine energy efficiency opportunities proactively,
  • improve overall operational efficiency, and
  • seamlessly integrate all clean energy technologies.

By smoothly engaging consumers and purposefully empowering utilities, a Smart Grid clearly holds the key to a healthy economy, a clean environment, and a prosperous future.  Details about the forum and registration information are available.

Richard O’Neill is a Program Coordinator for the Gridwise Alliance whose duties include managing communications and marketing activities.  He resides in Washington D.C., and is an adamant fan of the Washington Capitals.

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Hot Topics

Microgrids Getting Greater Attention at Federal Level: NEMA is advocating numerous provisions in FY2012 defense-related legislation that provide support for energy projects associated with microgrids and encourage the executive branch and state and local officials to give greater attention to microgrids. The House and Senate defense authorization bills, as well as defense, military construction and veterans affairs appropriations bills, include requirements and funding for these agencies to improve energy management throughout the agencies and on installations. NEMA is also pressing Congress to address Congressional Budget Office policies that do not properly account for energy savings achieved through energy savings performance contracts. Microgrids on military installations are particularly effective demonstrations of NEMA technologies since they do not face the level of red tape that exists elsewhere, and would ensure energy security on military installations during outages, such as the recent blackout in San Diego. Military investments in microgrids are projected to reach $10 billion by 2030. NEMA supports development of microgrids to make our military more energy independent, save taxpayer money, and create jobs.
—National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA)

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On the Hill/Around the Nation

NEMA Briefs CPSC Chair on Industry Efforts to Address Battery Ingestion: On September 22, 2011, a delegation comprised of members of the NEMA Dry Battery Section met with U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Chairman Inez Tenenbaum and her staff to discuss the industry’s proactive efforts to prevent and reduce the incidence of ingestion of lithium button and coin cell batteries. NEMA members highlighted five areas of focus, including education and outreach, battery compartment design, battery design, warning copy, and packaging. For more information on lithium button and coin cell battery ingestion, please click here. NEMA and Dry Battery Section members are committed to evaluating and implementing feasible measures to prevent, reduce, and where possible, eliminate the ingestion of lithium button and coin cell batteries. NEMA continues to work collaboratively with all stakeholders to address this multi-faceted challenge.
—National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA)

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International News

Smart Grid South Africa Workshop
Date: October 25-26, 2011
Johannesburg, South Africa
The U.S. Trade and Development Agency invites interested parties to attend this workshop to meet with key decision makers from South Africa’s electric power sector and to learn about upcoming procurement and investment opportunities in the country. The Government of South Africa is investing heavily in its electric power sector to upgrade infrastructure, increase generation, and gain efficiencies through new technologies. This expansion of South Africa’s electricity infrastructure will require significant investments in Smart Grid technologies.

This is an excellent opportunity to:

  • meet senior representatives from South Africa’s electric power sector
  • showcase your smart grid technologies, equipment, and services
  • learn about upcoming procurement and investment opportunities in South Africa
  • exchange lessons learned and current best practices for state of the art electricity transmission and distribution systems
  • discuss policies, standards, and financing options to support smart grid projects in South Africa
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NEMAcast focuses on news, information, and opportunities in the electroindustry. Listen online at podcast.nema.org. NEMAcast has several channels, each with a special focus on different parts of the electroindustry.


Industry News

  • Obama Admin to Unveil Transmission Pilot Projects
    Administration officials announced steps to speed up the construction of "key transmission facilities" they say will create thousands of jobs while modernizing the nation's electric grid. 10/05/11

[ Industry News Archives ]


Standardizations Trends

  • NEMA Publishes ANSI MG 1 Motors and Generators
    ANSI MG 1-2009 (R2010) Motors and Generators conveys practical information concerning performance, safety, test, construction and manufacture of ac and dc motors and generators. 10/06/11

[ NEMA News Archives ]


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Market Comments by Tom Robinson
Beginning Tuesday of last week the S&P registered a healthy gain of 2.1% for the week. The FTSE 100 was up 3.4%, and the Eurofirst 300 rose 2.6%. Tokyo fell about a percent, but Asian stocks overall were flat, if volatile. read more...

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2011 National Electrical Manufacturers Association. eiXtra is a biweekly e-newsletter for electroindustry professionals summarizing key manufacturer, standardization, and regulatory news. NEMA does not sell or release subscriber's personal information and will never willfully disclose individually identifiable information to any third party without first receiving your permission. Privacy policy.
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