Rural US awarded $276m for energy projects


The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has directed $276 million towards improving the efficiency and reliability of electricity infrastructure in rural areas.

The USDA will fund projects on metering, substation automation, computer applications, two-way communications and geospatial information systems.

$276 million will be directed towards building approximately 1,000 miles of lines and improve 733 miles of existing energy lines to meet growing energy demands in rural communities in twelve states

$65 million will be injected into the smart grid technologies sector to help utilities reduce outages and integrate new solutions.

US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, said:  “Investing in our nation’s electric infrastructure is fundamental for rural economic growth.

“… These investments also increase efficiency and productivity for businesses and residents, and support the quality of life in rural America.”

The investments are part of 31 recommendations which Perdue presented to the US president Donald Trump to promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities, by aligning the federal government with state, local and tribal governments.

The investments are being made through the USDA’s Rural Development’s Electric Programme.

The investments are being made in Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio and Virginia.