General Electric and internet giant Google are hoping to promote greater use of “smart” energy technologies in the USA through a new alliance.

The activities of the co-operation will focus on lobbying in Washington DC, and collaborating on the deployment of new energy technologies. At the same time, Greenhouse Gas Services, a venture between US utility AES and GE Energy Financial Services, has signed an agreement with Google to develop greenhouse gas reduction projects.

By promoting key policies, Google and GE hope to promote investment in the country’s power system, in particular to enable the large-scale deployment of renewable generating capacity and the development of advanced transmission, distribution and energy management technologies.

“We all receive an electricity bill once a month that encourages little except prompt payment,” says Google on its official blog. “What if, instead, we had access to real-time information about home energy use? What if our flat screen TVs, electronic equipment, lights and appliances were programmed to automatically adjust to save money and cut energy use? … This vision is what unites Google and GE.”

GE’s expertise in advanced energy technologies and Google’s focus on cutting-edge information technology are a perfect fit for overcoming economic, environmental and security challenges, say the companies.

Their collaboration on the deployment of renewable energy technologies will initially focus on Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS), an advanced geothermal technology that could provide large-scale baseload renewable power all over the world.

“GE and Google are exploring EGS-related technologies such as reservoir visualization and power conversion,” says a statement from GE. The companies will also target technologies to enable the wide-scale integration of plug-in vehicles to the grid.

The partnership is in line with GE’s Ecomagination strategy, which now represents sales worth $18 billion/year. Google is also involved in a number of clean energy initiatives, including investment in alternative energy start-ups.

Google has already made investments of over $10 million in EGS projects.

Greenhouse Gas Services and Google are aiming to develop projects that produce greenhouse gas credits, starting with a methane gas capture project at a landfill site in North Carolina. The project will capture more than 120 000 tons of landfill gas over ten years and is one of the first emission reduction co-development projects in the USA.

Google will add the GHG credits to its portfolio to help it achieve its goal of carbon neutrality.