For Immediate Release
Grant Money Would Help Offset Costs of Building Smart Grid
WILMINGTON, Del. - Delmarva Power announced today that it will file applications for $93 million in federal grants under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Smart Grid Investment Grant Program.
The utility is seeking grants from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to help cover the cost of advanced metering infrastructure, distribution automation and direct load control equipment in its Delaware and Maryland service territories. Of the total, $53 million would be targeted to Delaware and $40 million would be for Maryland. A $93 million grant, if awarded by DOE, would represent 50 percent of the total project spend, which is the maximum possible under the program.
"Every dollar we obtain from the federal government offsets the cost customers would otherwise pay to make these important improvements to the system, which are designed to enable customers to better manage their energy use and costs, improve customer service and reliability and create a cleaner environment," said Delmarva Power Region President Gary Stockbridge. "The funds also will allow us to do our part to jump start the local economy and help Delaware and Maryland meet their energy goals."
Advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) improves reliability by letting the utility know when a customer is out of service. AMI also is key to providing customers with greater usage data, which will enable them to make more informed choices regarding their energy use.
Distribution automation technology enhances the reliability of the electric system, so Delmarva Power will be better able to manage the flow of power and, when the flow is interrupted, restore service more quickly and safely.
Direct load control equipment gives the utility the ability to temporarily cycle on and off air conditioning equipment during times of peak demand for customers who volunteer to participate in the program. This helps to reduce overall usage, keep energy costs down and preserve the integrity of the electric system during critical load consumption periods .
Delmarva Power, a public utility owned by Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), provides safe and reliable energy to nearly 500,000 electric delivery customers in Delaware and Maryland and over 121,000 natural gas delivery customers in northern Delaware .