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US Government Announces $13 Billion in Funding to ‘Modernize’ Power Grids

Published: November 18, 2022
A view of windmills and power lines, as California's grid operator urged the state's 40 million people to ratchet down the use of electricity in homes and businesses as a wave of extreme heat settled over much of the state, near Tracy, California on August 17, 2022. (Image: REUTERS/Carlos Barria)

The White House announced through the Department of Energy (DOE) on Friday, Nov. 18 that it is soliciting grant applications for $13 billion in new financing under the bipartisan infrastructure bill for the expansion and modernization of U.S. electric grids.

The $1.2 trillion infrastructure law, passed last year, provides $10.5 billion to harden power systems against growing threats like extreme weather and climate change, the DOE said, and a further $2.5 billion to help build new transmission lines.

An estimated 70 percent of the nation’s transmission lines are over 25 years old, and this aging infrastructure makes American communities, critical infrastructure and economic interests vulnerable, the White House said.

The upgraded transmission system is also critical to cost-effectively achieving Biden’s goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent below 2005 levels in 2030 and achieving 100 percent clean electricity by 2035.

The White House highlighted other initiatives aimed at boosting the power grid, such as expediting approval of new transmission lines, advancing major project reviews and supporting wind-power transmission.

By Reuters. (Reporting by Abinaya Vijayaraghavan in Bengaluru and Jarrett Renshaw in Philadelphia; Editing by Jan Harvey and Jonathan Oatis)