FERC issued an order today to end a rulemaking process where it was considering whether to establish the standards to govern the way public utilities implement "smart grid" technologies on their transmission lines. The idea behind smart grid is to modernize the power grid using advanced computer and telecommunications systems to make energy transactions less costly and more reliable. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 directed FERC to adopt smart grid standards in coordination with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). FERC explained its decision to stop considering new smart grid rules by saying there is not yet broad agreement on what the smart grid standards should be, and so it deferred further action until NIST can present a consensus plan. FERC's decision does not set a deadline for NIST to make a proposal.