The Biden-Harris Administration (the Administration) yesterday launched the Federal-State Modern Grid Deployment Initiative (the Initiative), along with an accompanying fact sheet. The Initiative brings together states, federal entities, and U.S. power sector stakeholders to expand grid capacity and build modern grid capabilities on both new and existing transmission and distribution lines. Implementing these solutions is expected to increase integration of renewables and clean energy sources, with the U.S. set to build more new electric generation capacity than it has in 20 years (96% of it being clean energy). The Initiative is intended to complement last month’s announcement of a public-private mobilization to upgrade 100,000 miles of existing transmission lines over the next five years.

This bulletin briefly summarizes the Initiative’s key state and federal commitments:

Mutual federal-state commitments. The Initiative aims to address the challenges and opportunities posed by increased load growth, a rapidly evolving energy landscape, aging infrastructure, and new grid-enhancing technologies while ensuring reliable, clean, and affordable energy for consumers. The U.S. government and participating states jointly commit to:

  • deploy advanced grid technologies to expand capacity and enhance both new and existing transmission and distribution lines;
  • recognize that modern grid technologies are essential for a comprehensive energy strategy, complementing the need to build out new transmission and distribution lines;
  • work to increase state and federal cooperation for both intraregional and interregional transmission planning efforts;
  • work collaboratively with solution providers, industry, labour organizations, and trusted validators to build a diverse workforce and ensure grid owners and operators have access to training and equipmentneeded to support modern technology deployment;
  • facilitate collaboration among stakeholders and communities to share how to improve siting, regulatory, and economic structures most effectively; and
  • explore opportunities to establish innovative partnership models, pool resources, and jointly plan transmission and distribution infrastructure development.

State commitments. 21 state governments, namely,  Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawai‘i, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington, and Wisconsin, commit to enhancing state cooperation and deploying innovative grid technologies that can boost grid capacity, meet current and future demand, maximize infrastructure benefits, enhance resilience to climate impacts, and protects consumers from energy price fluctuations. Participating states commit to:

  • prioritize efforts to adopt modern grid solutions to cost-effectively meet growing electric grid needs, including increasing capacity and better using existing infrastructure;
  • explore opportunities at the executive and legislative levels to address capacity challenges expediently facing the grid;
  • explore pathways to adopt high-performance conductors and grid-enhancing technologies, including integrating them into grid planning, offering financial incentives, setting performance standards, and updating cost-effectiveness criteria;
  • maximize the use of available federal financial and technical assistance;
  • help assess and communicate the potential benefits of modern grid technologies to partners and stakeholders within and across states, including local governments and the public; and
  • share successes, challenges, lessons learned, and best practices with other states.

Federal commitments. The Initiative notes that a strong electric grid is crucial for achieving economic, social, climate, and strategic goals, enhancing economic competitiveness, and expanding manufacturing capacity. The U.S. federal government commits to:

  • maintain its national focus on grid innovation and promote awareness of power challenges as a strategic and economic priority nationwide;
  • ensure federal agencies and lawmakers are informed of the value and opportunities created by grid innovation, and the need for reform;
  • make technical assistance programs available from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Grid Deployment Office, Office of Electricity, and National Labs for regions and states that are seeking additional support;
  • ensure states are aware of available financial assistance resources to support local projects, including $10.5B from the DOE’s Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnership program and $9.7B in low-interest loans or grants from the Department of Agriculture’s Empowering Rural America program;
  • encourage Power Marketing Administrations to consider modern grid technologies and collaborate with related power authorities;
  • promote ongoing dialogue between partner states, industry leaders, labour organizations, and trusted technical validators (domestically and globally) to explore strategies to accelerate deployment of grid innovation technologies; and
  • continue to source, track, evaluate, and disseminate information on state-of-the-art technologies and policies.

For further information or to discuss the contents of this bulletin, please contacLisa DeMarco at

*Special thanks to Anuja Purohit for her assistance in preparing this bulletin.


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