11:00 16 May 2013
The proposal to install “smart energy meters” nationwide will have to wait for another year. This was announced yesterday by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to the energy providers as the necessary data and communication facilities are not yet in place.
It was earlier announced that energy providers should start the rollout of the smart energy meters in the summer of 2014 but is now being moved back to autumn of 2015.
The Secretary of Energy, Mr. Ed Davey, said that the one-year lead time will give the government enough time to complete the necessary system to successfully launch this energy savings project. With the delay in the launch, completion date has also been moved back to 2020 instead of 2019.
Ministers have insisted on the installation of “smart energy meters” in 30 million homes and small businesses. The £12billion project aims to make manual meter reading and guesstimates of bills obsolete.
A smart meter is an electrical meter that accounts for the energy consumption in hourly interval and sends back that information to the utility company for billing as well as monitoring purposes.
In contrast to a home energy monitor, the smart meter is capable of collecting data and reporting remotely. While traditional meter reading is done manually, smart meters is capable of two-way communication.
The use of smart meters is a good scheme for energy savings. Energy suppliers will save approximately £300million a year from their use. Consumers on the other hand will be benefited with accurate bills, which has always been a bone of contention for a lot of customers.
The smart meters can also be a driver for the consumers to better manage their energy use and save from reduced bills at the same time help protect the environment with lesser carbon emission.
As some utility companies have already started the installation of smart meters, DECC said it would establish new rules so that households that already have smart meters installed from the end of 2013 would be able to keep them even if they change to a supplier that did not offer the same kind of energy savings meters.
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