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Graphic Series: Earthly Ideas, Smart Grids

This week's cartoon describes smart grids (BRT) – systems for transmitting energy that use two-way sensors to detect and respond to changing power supplies and demands in real time. Smart grids have the capacity to transfer energy from wherever it's being generated to wherever they are needed, making it possible for all kinds of new power-generation models, from large solar installations to backyard windmills, to work together. Smart grid technology, combined with smart metering, can save enormous amounts of energy that is currently being wasted, it's one of our most promising tools for building more energy efficient communities and nations.

Here on Worldchanging, we've been covering the development of smart grids since 2003. For some of our best posts exploring future possibilities for smart grids, check out Jamais Cascio's Smart Grids, Grid Computing, and the New World of Energy, Joy Green's Smart Grid, Meet the Product-Service Model, Julia Levitt's Smart Garage: An Integration Revolution, or Sarah Kuck's Project Get Ready Aims to Create Electric Vehicle Revolution.

Click image to enlarge

Editor's note: This post is part of a series featuring Worldchanging ally Andy Lubershane's original graphics. While many of the issues covered in the comics have been discussed on Worldchanging in the past, we hope that you'll be able to use this new medium in a different way … whether it's in your classroom, on your office wall, or to help explain ideas to friends and family.

Andy Lubershane researches, writes and cartoons about sustainability from his home in Boston. Check out more of his illustrations here

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