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Energy companies must triple installations to meet 2020 smart meter deadline

ENERGY COMPANIES would need to install 30 smart meters per day, every day, until the end of 2020 in order to meet their deadline for switching the UK.

According to an investigation by Which?, the current rate of rollout is just 9.7 smart meters, meaning that the target won’t just be missed, but will be missed spectacularly.

To give you a flavour – so far, the big suppliers have managed to fit 11 million in total – but many of those are going to need updating further.

The switch to smart has been beset by problems, not least from the imposed deadline, which has led to meters being fitted quickly or by staff who are only just out of training on how to do it.

Worse still, many companies have fitted meters that meet the minimum specification (SMETS1) but aren’t completely compliant with the standard that will eventually need to be adopted (SMETS2).

As a result, many smart meters will cease to work properly if you switch supplier and will therefore need further upgrading.

SMETS1 meters are no longer available, as of last month, but a great many have been fitted already.

The body overseeing the changeover, Smart Energy GB said suppliers: “In line with the government’s figures, smart meters will help people save on average almost £50 a year on their energy bills by 2030.”

But Alex Neill from Which? begs to differ: “The smart meter rollout has been plagued by problems and been massively delayed, the benefits have been overstated and the savings they could bring consumers are at risk.”

The government has been asked to rethink the plans, but we suspect the government will claim it has more pressing things distracting it right now.

Some quarters are questioning whether there’s any tangible benefit for the UK by having smart meters at all, but the industry is determined to continue.

Smart Meters in the UK work with a mixture of a SIM card to send readings back to the supplier and a firewalled Zigbee connection between the two meters. μ

Further reading

Source : Inquirer

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