The push for a modernized electrical grid
Despite a cooling economy and dropping oil prices, interest in developing a 'smart' electrical grid is at an all-time high.
According to a USA Today report , the drive for alternative energy has cooled somewhat, thanks to the economic recession slowing down solar and wind energy developers, and oil prices dropping from their all-time high in 2008. However, one small section of the energy industry is gaining interest: developing a “smart” electrical grid.
As part of his $819 stimulus plan, President Obama has called for the installation of 3,000 miles of transmission lines to carry renewable energy to population centers and 40 million smart electric meters in residences. The House’s version of the bill sets aside $11 billion to help in financing the investments. In addition, top power companies and lawmakers are clamoring for up to $1 trillion for a nationwide backbone electric grid, and parties from utilities and venture-capital firms are pouring billions of dollars into the "smart grid"—despite the growing economic crunch.
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey