As we have mentioned in our other posts, Europe aims to reduce its primary energy use by 20% by 2020, a target which is not legally binding. The Energy Efficiency Directive was proposed by the European Commission in mid-2011 as part of its effort to reach this objective.
The proposed directive has been seen as a game-changer mainly because it imposes an annual 1.5% energy-savings obligation on energy utilities – considerably more than the existing legislation – and it is expected to trigger a major energy-efficient revamp of the EU’s existing building stock.
As utilities will have to achieve additional savings every year, they will start implementing energy efficiency measures for their customers – measures which will see electricity prices go down in the long-run, but which require initial upfront costs.
Bogdan Atanasiu, of the Buildings Performance Institute Europe, said there are two ways governments can do this. “You either take money from the public budget – to which not every citizen really contributes – or you raise the energy bills, ensuring everyone will pay.” For the latter, a fair solution would be to help those who cannot afford the building renovation, Atanasiu said.
Last week European Commission published official document with recommendations on preparations for the roll-out of smart metering systems.
EU Commission website summerized this document with following text:
Commission paves the way for massive roll-out of smart metering systems. When consumers can follow their energy consumption in real time they can better control their energy bills. Smart metering systems will make this possible. Today only 10% of EU households have some sort of smart meter installed. Where economically worthwhile, 80% of all electricity meters in the EU have to be replaced by smart meters by 2020. To facilitate the take-up of this new technology the European Commission has published today a Recommendation to prepare the roll-out of smart-metering systems. It provides step-by-step guidelines for Member States on how to conduct cost-benefit analysis by 3 September 2012. It also sets common minimum functionalities of smart metering systems and addresses data protection and security issues.
By 2020 we will have plenty of data to play with and it’s great that EU has already noticed the importance of security regulations around the smart-metering scene. Data collection should be limited to the minimum necessary and smart-meter owners should have complete control over the usage of their consumption data.
Read more: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/gas_electricity/smartgrids/smartgrids_en.htm
It does, according to the survey released last year by CenterPoint Energy in US. The survey results were collected from 500 participants of the smart meter In-Home Display pilot program which begun fall 2010. 71% of customers reported that they have changed their electricity consumption behavior as a result of the energy use data they accessed on their in-home displays.
Results of the survey:
- 83% of respondents reported turning off lights at night or when not in the room,
- 51% of respondents reported adjusting the temperature on their thermostat,
- 93% of respondents reported they are satisfied with their in-home display, and
- 97% of respondents reported they will continue using it.