San Diego, the second largest city in California and eighth largest in the United States, is making some important moves toward becoming a smart city, which according to the “Smart City San Diego” collaborative, means promoting sutainability and the growth of green jobs. Ecology and green solutions form the basis of the Smart City San Diego initiative, which plans to establish San Diego as the US leader for clean energy. The groups was formed one year ago (January 2011) and comprises the city of San Diego, the University of California San Diego, and the San Diego gas & electric company.
The goal of the initiatives planned by Smart City San Diego is to improve the regions energy independence while reducing its greenhouse gas emissions. The list of initiatives combines and organises a number of different initiatives that are applied piece-meal in other cases, such as EV chargins station infrastructure, smart appliances, smart grid communication systems, cleantech economic development, renewable energy storage research, cleantech-friendly policy development, green job workforce development etc. In addition, the city is one of the top contenders in the running to host the 2013 Solar Decathlon competition, an international competition to design and build the most attractive, effective and energy-efficient solar powered house.
To accomplish the initiative’s planned electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure, Smart City San Diego has been working with Daimler’s Car2Go program to make its San Diego pilot program a success, working collectively to promote participation in the pilot as well as to spure more general interest in electric vehicles. The program has also been used to generate data about where more EV charging stations need to be constructed.
Other measures are strategically focused around one of San Diego’ s major natural assets, the sun. Building on the California Governor’ s Office of Economic Development’ s designation of the greater San Diego region as an Innovation Hub (IHub) for solar energy storage, Smart City San Diego members UC San Diego and SDG&E have submitted a grant application to test, demonstrate and evaluate a variety of solar integrated energy storage projects over a year to two-year period.
If funded, this initiative will give the grantees the funding necessary to test multiple solar energy storage applications across multiple sites, providing solid data and strategic analysis for the benefit of stakeholders such as utilities, grid planners, regulators, solar inverter manufacturers, system integrators, business modelers, energy storage manufacturers and other early adopters.
The collaborative group has focused on both listening to major cleantech players with the power to create more jobs in the region, and speaking to policy-makers like California Public Utilities Commissioner Mark Ferron, who have the power to create conditions favorable for such players, both small and large.
Working with CleanTech San Diego and SDG&E, GE offered its first-ever GE Sourcing Supplier Diversity event, during which a number of local cleantech suppliers were given the inside word on what GE buyers are looking for in suppliers, along with what they need to do to be considered for future projects with GE. Mark Hura, global smart grid commercial leader for GE’ s Digital Energy business, highlighted GE’ s focus on bringing smart grid infrastructure to San Diego as an opportunity for local suppliers to work with GE.
The original article can be found here.