By B.N. Frank
Opposition to utility “Smart” Meters – electric, gas, and water – is worldwide for numerous reasons. Last month, Activist Post reported about “Smart” Meters getting poor reviews in the UK. Soon after, UK Power published an article about “Smart” Meter pros and cons. Blimey!
From UK Power:
Energy smart meters – the pros and cons
Check out our complete guide to smart meters for everything you need to know about the new devices, from how they work to how to get your hands on one.
Energy prices are (generally) always on the rise. Aside from a slight blip during lockdown last year, when prices dropped due to a drop in demand, prices have been steadily rising for years.
Electricity prices alone have increased by almost a third in the last five years.
To give you an idea of the extent of the price hikes, here are some headline figures:
But what can be done about it?
Switching to a cheaper energy deal when your current one is up for renewal is always a good start, but it helps to combine your money-saving efforts with some energy efficiency measures.
Installing a smart electric meter can help. These electronic digital devices help to keep track of and record the usage of electricity at home. Although there have been problems with the roll out, the government plans to equip every British home with a smart meter by the middle of 2025.
In fact certain utility companies like British Gas and First Utility have already begun to offer these to customers and these will help to replace traditional analog meters that need to be manually read, as they automatically record information and send it across to the utility provider. Like everything else smart meters have advantages and disadvantages, such as:
Benefits for consumers and the environment:
- Helps to reduce power outages and tripping of electrical systems
- Helps a consumer to economize to receive lower energy bills
- Gives a homeowner detailed information about their power consumption
- Since there is no manual meter reading required, it saves emissions from use of vehicles to visit a home
- Helps to cut greenhouse emissions from an electricity plant
- Is beneficial in maximising utility of existing power resources and obviates the need for new plants
Benefits for the power service provider:
- Removes the need to have the meter read manually
- Helps in increasing efficient use of power
- Monitoring is easier and faster
- Helps in determining price as per demand
- Removes the need for building additional power units
- Helps in determining power supply and reducing blackouts or outages
- Improves profitability for the power company
However, some people believe there are drawbacks to these energy meters which may be taken into consideration when purchasing one. Some of the challenges for utility companies, the environment and consumers are:
To the environment and consumers:
- Disposing of the old analogue meters
- Consumers need to curtail power consumption or environmental benefits will be lost
- The extra costs for the new smart meter
- Verification of the accuracy of the device
- Safety of personal data
Drawbacks for utility companies:
- Having to ensure that customer personal data is secured
- An increase in the budget outlay for related R&D and software
- Storage of vast quantities of consumer data
- Upgrading from old to new technology and systems
- Convincing the general public and winning them over to shift to the new smart meter
It seems there are plenty of pros and cons when it comes to smart energy meters, and we’d love to hear what you think about the roll out of this new technology, get in touch on Twitter and let us know your thoughts.
Click here to run an energy price comparison, and see if you could be paying less for your gas and electricity.
“Smart” Meters have been associated with HIGHER bills, fires (see 1, 2, 3), explosions, and health problems (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14) some of which have led to lawsuits (see 1, 2). A 2017 study determined that 9 of most commonly installed “Smart” Meters had measurement errors up to 582% (see 1, 2). A documentary about “Smart” Meters, Take Back Your Power, is free to watch online.
Activist Post reports regularly about “Smart” Meters and other unsafe technology. For more information, visit our archives and the following websites:
- Coalition to Stop Smart Meters
- EMF Safety Network
- Smart Meter Harm
- Smart Grid Awareness
- Smart Meter News
- Smart Meter Education Network
- Take Back Your Power
- The People’s Initiative
- Wireless Information Network
- Electromagnetic Radiation Safety
- Environmental Health Trust
- Physicians for Safe Technology
- Wireless Information Network
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