Utilities continue to invest mightily in the nation’s electric transmission infrastructure, a new federal report shows.
Overall, investment in the electric power delivery grid reaches $21 billion in capital additions in 2016, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
“Spending on infrastructure to deliver power to homes and businesses has increased steadily over the past 10 years as utilities build, upgrade, and replace station equipment, poles, fixtures, and overhead lines and devices, EIA said.
Broken down by region, the heaviest surge in transmission was in the PJM Interconnection region serving the power needs of the heavily congested northeast.
Robust spending on transmission by utilities continues as the grid evolves to become more digital and accommodate more diverse sources of generation. At the same time, the grid must be hardened against cyberterrorism and secured against possible attacks.
EIA identified some of the leading transmission projects under construction, including “the Midcontinent Independent System Operator’s (MISO) Multi-Value Portfolio ... a $6.6 billion portfolio of 17 transmission projects designed to address regional reliability needs and provide greater access to renewable energy resources.”