According to a recent study by ABI Research, cumulative global
investment in smart grids will total over $45 billion in the next
five years, as both governments and utilities repair, upgrade and
transform their aging infrastructure. Much of the developed world
relies on energy transmission technology and infrastructure that
was built between 60 and 80 years ago, and it's beginning to show
says that the "lion's share" of this spending will go towards
"Transmission and Distribution" investments, which will attract $41
billion through 2015. Smart grids give utilities real-time, two-way
communications with each segment of the electrical grid, assessing
loads, usage, and efficiency twenty-four hours a day.
Major companies like Cisco (
), Siemens AG (
), and General Electric (
) have taken stakes in the smart grid market. Echelon [Echelon]
) and Itron (
) are dedicated smart-grid and data-systems companies that could
benefit from this flood of investment.
In addition, to respond to the demand for smart grid investment
opportunities, First Trust has created the First Trust NASDAQ Clean
Edge Smart Grid Infrastructure Index Fund (
), which tracks the performance of
in the grid and electric energy infrastructure sector.