Smart grid is a strategic initiative for many developed countries with an aging electric infrastructure. For the Canadian Province of Ontario, it has already become a reality after its utilities deployed smart meters (picture right) to more than 80% of its 5 million electricity users. And this was done despite a sparse geography and a challenging climate. The determination can be traced back to its political leadership in green sector that wants to transform a massive infrastructure challenge into a vector of economic development.
The Minister of Energy, Chris Bentley, noted during my recent visit in Toronto that great hockey players "skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been". Blue Chip companies like GE and IBM have long been in Ontario, which benefits from an advanced manufacturing industry and world-class research & education institutions. But Canadians have more difficulty to commercialize innovation than their US neighbors. Are people in Ontario up to the challenge?