The benfits of smart meters

Posted on 15 May 2012

By: Charles Hendry, Minister of State for the Department of Energy and Climate Change.


Smart gas and electricity meters will play a key role in bringing our energy management into the 21st century.

They will bring benefits for consumers, giving us more control over how we use our energy at home and at work, helping us to cut energy consumption save money and reduce carbon emissions.

Smart meters will provide accurate consumption information and bring an end to estimated billing – so no more nasty surprises for consumers – and will make switching between suppliers smoother and faster.

They will also help suppliers run their businesses more effectively. New products and services will be supported in a vibrant and competitive market in energy and energy management services. The roll-out will also support the development of a smart grid delivering improved network efficiency and responsiveness and supporting the uptake of electric vehicles and microgeneration.

Given these benefits, the Government is overseeing an ambitious programme for every home in Great Britain to have a smart electricity and gas meter with an In-Home Display which will show you how much energy you are using.

Energy suppliers will be required to install smart meters in 28 million homes and 2 million smaller businesses in Britain, delivering over £7billion net benefit to the nation.

The mass roll-out of smart meters will begin in 2014 and be completed in 2019. Some energy suppliers have already started installing smart meters.

We want to ensure that the benefits of the programme are maximised and that consumers are protected.  We are consulting on a series of measures, such as how consumers should be engaged and how data can be accessed and protected, which underline our determination to put consumers’ interests at the heart of the programme.