Before people can really grasp saving energy in their homes, they need to know how much energy they are using. This is where ‘smart’ meters can have a real impact.
These meters measure and record energy consumption. This information is transmitted to the energy supplier, displayed on the meter’s screen and stored in its memory. This enables householders to see, for example, exactly how much energy, emissions and money the kettle uses up. It also allows consumers to see how much energy they are using compared to the same period in previous years.
Suppliers can take remote readings and offer new products to encourage households to use less energy at peak times. Smart meters also mean it will be far easier for householders to generate electricity at home and control how much of the excess they export to the grid.
The government expects that within ten years all domestic properties will have smart meters. However the Energy White Paper only pushed ahead with firm proposals for ‘real-time display’ units. These are display units added on to existing meters, and allow consumers to see their energy use at any particular time.
Green Alliance has been examining both the roll-out of real-time displays and smart meters with industry and academic experts and held a seminar on this issue in Ocotober 2007.
We have now submitted a response to the consultation which can be downloaded here (pdf - 59.5KB)
For more information please contact Faye Scott.