Firm assists utilities with Smart Grid DOE grant applications

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Burns & McDonnell has provided federal Smart Grid grant application consultation services for five longtime public and cooperative power utility clients who have successfully completed first-round compliance reviews and are now under further competitive evaluation.

These clients submitted applications to the U.S. Department of Energy for grants totaling a combined $230.1 million that would fund up to 50 percent of eligible Smart Grid investments. The investments would allow the utilities to enhance service capabilities by adding two-way communications systems, advanced metering infrastructure, home area networks, load control, distribution automation, remote grid monitoring, control capabilities and many other technology upgrades. Utilities and their grant applications included:

  • PowerSouth Energy Cooperative, a generation and transmission cooperative headquartered in Andalusia, Ala., has applied for an $82 million grant.
  • Hoosier Energy, a generation and transmission cooperative headquartered in Bloomington, Ind., has applied for a $33.2 million grant.
  • Kansas City Board of Public Utilities, a public power utility headquartered in Kansas City, Kan., has applied for a $30.4 million grant.
  • Lincoln Electric System, a public power utility headquartered in Lincoln, Neb., has applied for a $33.5 million grant to install smart meters in its service area.
  • Nashville Electric Services, a public power utility headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., has applied for a $51 million grant for a Smart Grid infrastructure project that would be coordinated with the Tennessee Valley Public Power Authority.

A sixth utility was assisted by Burns & McDonnell with its grant application but elected to defer a filing in the first round of solicitations.

As part of its consultation with utility clients, Burns & McDonnell has committed to provide technical support and program management for the utilities' Smart Grid projects.

The Smart Grid Investment Grant Program is part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Electricity Delivery & Energy Reliability Recovery Plan. The Smart Grid technology development grants have an allocated funding of $3.375 billion. An additional $615 million has been allocated to support development of Smart Grid storage, monitoring and technology viability.

Burns & McDonnell has many decades of experience in designing and constructing electrical transmission and distribution systems in communities across the nation. With the development of the Smart Grid, Burns & McDonnell is helping energy providers develop power delivery systems that enable utilities to better manage power demand and remotely monitor transmission and distribution systems.

About Burns & McDonnell

Burns & McDonnell provides engineering, architecture, construction, environmental and consulting services to clients throughout North America and abroad. More than 3,000 engineers, architects, scientists, planners, estimators, economists, technicians and other professionals work in 20 offices located throughout the U.S. Founded in 1898, Burns & McDonnell is 100 percent employee-owned. In January 2009, Burns & McDonnell was named by FORTUNE magazine as one of America's "100 Best Companies to Work For."