The Federal Government in Australia has announced an up to A$100 million (US$76.44 million) investment in the 2009 Budget to assist the development of smart grid technology to create a "smarter and more efficient energy network".
Smart grid technology monitors electricity supply across distribution
networks using communications technology. It helps integrate renewable energy
into the grid and gives consumers information on their energy usage.
According to Communications Minister Stephen Conroy, the government will
immediately begin to look for ways to demonstrate a smart grid network.
Depending on an implementation study, the demonstration would extend to
developing an integrated system of smart grids and smart meters in one city,
town or region, which in turn would help with the wider deployment of smart grid
technology across the nation.
Conroy said investment in the smart grid project would mean that Australia
would be better able to take advantage of the pending National Broadband
"The government has invested heavily in energy efficiency and is determined
that Australia now takes the next step to harness new technologies that drive
even further energy efficiency," Conroy said in a statement.
NICTA funding continued
Conroy also said that
government-owned ICT research house National ICT Australia's funding will be
extended by four years to 2014-15 at the cost of A$185.5 million (US$141.8 million) over four
"With funding certainty to 2014-15, NICTA will continue to generate
significant economic and social returns for the Australian community and attract
increased investment from other partners," Conroy said.
Do Not Call Register boosted
Conroy also announced the Do
Not Call Register, which attempts to block telemarketing nuisances, would be
expanded, receiving A$4.7 million (US$3.6 million) over four years to widen its scope, after the
minister received a number of requests directly from the public on the