Smart Grid Benefits

Current Benefits

PG&E’s SmartMeter™ program is already delivering substantial benefits to customers. SmartMeters™ give customers greater control over their energy use and costs by allowing them to monitor their energy use online and determine which activities are contributing to their bills. Customers can also go online to see projected monthly bills based on their current usage allowing action to be taken before prior to getting the bill.

SmartMeter™ Enabled Tools

Future Benefits

Buildling a smarter grid will help California achieve a more efficient and reliable power grid and revolutionize energy use for generations to follow. It will help us reduce our carbon footprint and give us more choices about how we use our energy. See below to explore the future benefits of Smart Grid.

More Reliable Power

Building a smarter grid will help California achieve a more efficient and reliable power grid and revolutionize energy use for generations to follow. The SmartMeter™ program is the first step in connecting us to the grid which will allow PG&E to quickly identify outages and resolve other service problems—in many cases without a visit to your home or business.

More Efficient Renewable Power

Thousands of Californians already rely on our most abundant natural resource—the sun—for generating their power. Using solar energy to power your home or business can lower your energy costs over time, while also creating clean power, free of harmful greenhouse gas emissions. Plus, properly maintained solar systems should be able to product clean energy from the sun for up to 25 years. The Smart Grid will revolutionize the way we use and store renewable energy.

A Cleaner Mix of Energy Sources

Clean energy sources like wind and sun are key players in PG&E’s energy mix, which also includes hydropower, biomass and geothermal resources. Over half of the energy PG&E delivers to customers comes from zero-carbon sources, making it among the cleanest energy in the nation. And that’s significant, considering the U.S. is responsible for much of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Renewable energy resources help us reduce our carbon footprint and demonstrate environmental leadership.

Smart Devices & Smart Homes

The SmartMeter™ is the first step toward turning our power grid into an intelligent, integrated network. The next steps? Smart appliances and the smart home. Together, they make a Home Area Network (HAN) that will give us the ability to automate our home energy use so we get the most value from every dollar spent on electricity. The SmartMeter™ connects to smart devices and provides near real-time data to each. This way, the devices can respond to grid conditions automatically. In the future, we’ll be able to use a broadband connection to control exactly when and how our appliances use energy—from anywhere.

Reducing Our Carbon Footprint

Electricity is the most versatile and easily controlled form of energy. Unfortunately, its generation is also the biggest single source of carbon dioxide emissions. With the Smart Grid, we’ll have the power to substantially reduce carbon emissions. Everything about the Smart Grid is geared toward reducing our reliance on fossil fuel resources and increasing our use of renewables to reduce our carbon footprint.

Paving the Road for Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles (EVs) are on the horizon, bringing with them reduced greenhouse gas emissions and fossil fuel dependence. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that a shirt to EVs could reduce foreign oil imports by 52%. California is sure to be among the country’s most enthusiastic early adopters of EVs. Accommodating these millions of EVs will require a smarter grid. Anticipating the influx of EVs over the next ten years, PG&E has been testing “smart charging” technology, helping to develop codes and standards. By working with national and international organizations, vehicle manufacturers, dealerships and customers, we’re helping to ensure that all EVs charge and communicate in similar ways.

Smart Jobs

Putting the grid into action will generate more than just cleaner energy. It will generate tens of thousands of Smart Grid-related jobs over the next decade. The majority of these jobs will center on power company headquarters, hardware development and manufacturing, and software development and services. And California is the leading state in each of these four areas, as they pertain to the SmartGrid. The rest of the good news? Since most of these jobs are tied to specific locations, they can’t be outsourced.

SmartMeter™ & Smart Grid

  • Learn how the two are working together to power a brighter future.

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Modern Grid Benefits

Over 20 years, the smart grid could save $46 billion to $117 billion through the avoided costs of power plant, transmission line and substation construction.

By 2025, increases in energy efficiency, renewable energy and distributed generation through the smart grid could save an estimated $36 billion.

Read the full D.O.E. report

Environmental Defense Fund

  • Environmental Defense Fund endorses the Smart Grid.

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By making smart investments in a "smart" green grid, we can greatly reduce our use of dirty energy, improve air quality and the health of millions of Americans affected by dangerous air pollution, and advance our energy independence and economic growth.

  • Carbon Calculator
  • Industrial incentives