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Smart meters for business and homes

15 June 2007

White Paper requires smart meters in businesses

The Government’s Energy White Paper published last month, and currently under consultation, presents its strategies for dealing with climate change and maintaining stable and affordable energy supply in an increasingly
unstable world.

Among the proposals is a requirement for new meters to come with a real-time display from 2008 and a short term offer
of free displays from energy suppliers for households to 2010. In addition, the Government is encouraging the introduction of
smart meters, in the household sector and for small firms with everyone equipped with one within 10 years, whilst requiring
smart meters for all but the smallest of businesses in the next five years.

This move is supported by Smart meters for business and homes recent research by the Carbon Trust that showed that SMEs using smart readers could save 2.5m tonnes of carbon emissions a year – equivalent to the entire carbon footprint of Bristol. The research included the largest trial in the UK of smart meters in 580 sites. It showed that SME’s that switched to smart meters saved £1,000 on their energy bills with the largest savings in multi-site businesses such as retail and wholesale chains, and high energy users such as small manufacturing companies.

The White Paper aims to extend emissions trading to large commercial organisations such as banks, supermarkets and
large local authorities through a cap and trade ‘Carbon Reduction Commitment’.Government also published a ‘Distributed Generation’ Reportto simplify energy market and licensing arrangements for localised energy microgenerators to sell excess electricity.

The strategy will see the tripling of the amount of electricity from renewables by 2015, and cutting of emissionsby 23-33m tonnes of carbon by 2020 – the equivalent of removing all the emissions generated by every car, van and lorry on the UK’s roads today.

The White Paper can be found in full at energy/whitepaper

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