Fast rollout of smart grids - 11 Aug 2009


The recently separated distribution arm of Dutch energy utility Essent has been launched under its new name of Enexis. It services 2.6 million households in the northern, eastern and southern parts of the Netherlands.

They announced that rather than taking the slow road of upgrading their ageing network they wanted to speed up the rollout of smart grids, starting with greenfield deployments.

The key driver will be to facilitate the feed-in of renewable energy into the network. Their aim is to build a very user-friendly network that offers a one-step procedure to people who want to produce their own energy and deliver it (solar, wind) to the network.

Together with other utilities they also plan to roll out 10,000 'charging poles' for e-cars, and they are in discussion with councils and developers on how to best deploy this network.

They have calculated that building a separate large e-car charging network would cost €30 billion; however by upgrading their existing network to a smart grid this application can be facilitated by an investment of €7 billion.

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