|Transmission project spending in North America will ramp up significantly over the next eight years, with a total of $169.7bln of projects expected to come online between 2012 and 2020, according to TransmissionHub data.The writers claim the report sheds light on the following statistics including the soaring demand for electricity and the need for increased reliability are driving a range of new projects for the North American electric transmission systems"Nearly $70bln of projects are scheduled to come online during the 2012-2015 period alone. Excluding suspended and cancelled transmission projects, about $7bln of projects representing about 3100 miles of lines, the majority of which are 230kV, are scheduled to come online in 2012. In 2013 and 2014, that annual investment will more than double, with investments of $15.4bln and $15.3bln, respectively, representing 5600 miles and 6100 miles of lines. Those annual investments will more than double again in 2015, to $31bln, representing 9700 miles of lines. For the 2016-2020 period, North American transmission investment is expected to amount to $101.2bln, with the majority of that spend, $74.3bln, taking place at the front end of that range, or 2016-2018. "The soaring demand for electricity and the need for increased reliability are driving a range of new projects for the North American electric transmission systems," says Rosy Lum, chief analyst, TransmissionHub, "At the same time, the industry is increasingly integrating and generating renewable resources into the power grid."