The way we record electricity is about the change, as Electric Smart Metering Systems will be introduced to Ireland from 2020. If you are wondering what a Smart Meter is, it’s the next generation meter for electricity. The electric meters that we use today were created decades ago but that will change in 2020.
The Irish Independent believe “Smart meters will reduce household energy bills by €50 or 2.5%, per year”.
What are the Benefits of Smart Metering?
Real time information. Have you ever wanted to know how much money you’re spending on energy? With smart metering you can use your phone or tablet to see exactly how much is being spent on energy, rather than waiting for that dreaded bill to come in January when the cash is low! By allowing consumers access to how much energy they are using they can plan ahead so that they can save money.
Andrew Kneeshaw, Gateway Energy Solution’s managing director, says there will be more value for users, with the information available.
“Smart metering for small businesses opens the door for people to get a real-time view of how they are using energy. Suppliers are already offering on-line portals enabling companies to track use on a day to day basis and this will be the norm in the next few years. Yes, more accurate bills are important, but that benefit pales in to insignificance compared with value of the information it gives users. As energy efficiency advisors, we know that accurate information on use is the key prerequisite to reducing use and this is where smart metering offers the biggest potential benefit.”
- The end of estimated bills! You will now be billed for what you actually used in the billing period.
- All customers will be moved onto time of use tariffs. The time of use tariffs means that companies will be offering a range of tariffs for energy use during the day, which will allow customers to use electricity at cheaper times.
Phil Foster, MD of Love Energy Savings in the UK, had has this to say about the Smart Meter’s and the impact it may have on energy bills:
“The national smart meter rollout is now in full flow and the march towards Ireland’s ‘smart future’ is getting faster, whether we like it or not. While the smart meters are not compulsory, the benefits, both for individuals and the nation as a whole, will result in more effective energy management, ultimately resulting in lower prices and increased efficiency.”
Are there any Drawbacks?
- There is some concern with smart metering about the risk of devices being hacked, leading to personal information being accessed by potential hackers.
- Nearly half of the European Union countries have already rejected the rollout of Smart Metering, due to finding the technology to be poor value for money. The German government decided it didn’t make sense as householders do not use enough energy to make it value for money.
We will have to wait until 2020 to see the impact Smart Metering and what it means for you.