Power grids worldwide are under pressure from a more volatile climate, growing demand for renewable energy, and rising urbanization. Existing grid networks are vulnerable to extreme weather events and cyber-attacks, with power outages in the US alone costing businesses around $150 billion a year. Traditional grid technology holds back the integration of distributed energy sources and restricts consumer energy contributions. With the global population expected to increase by 2.5 billion people by 2050 – two-thirds of whom are expected to live in urban areas – energy demand will only increase the load on existing infrastructure. Furthermore, as nations and businesses look to bolster energy security in light of the turmoil wrought by the Russia-Ukraine crisis, it is even more imperative to explore ways to build for a more efficient, resilient, and sustainable future.
Making the Switch: Navigating the Smart Grid Transition report discusses how innovative combinations of advanced technologies will accelerate innovation towards a "Smart Grid 2.0" that can address these legacy operational challenges and create commercial opportunities across the energy sector (see Exhibit below).