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Government announces smart meter delay

According to a recently released House Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee report, it is not likely that the near universal smart meter roll out will be achieved by 2020.

It said that technical issues around interoperability – such as the migration from SMETS 1 to SMETS 2 – lacked a clear plan for resolution and the DCC delay had damaged confidence in the programme.

The report’s authors urged the government to remain ambitious about securing the maximum benefits from smart meters as soon as possible, particularly in relation to energy efficiency and consumer bills, and called on the government to monitor the effect of the programme to ensure that low-income households, in particular, are benefitting.

“The delay in starting the smart meter universal roll out is disappointing, but not unexpected,” said Energy and Utilities Alliance (EUA) chief executive Mike Foster.

Industry has repeatedly met the expectations of government and jumped through hoop after hoop, but this must stop. A firm start date needs to be identified to allow companies to gear up and start the roll out.

“Moving the completion date back from 2020 is far from ideal. However, it is important to recognise that if the project starts late it cannot be delivered in less time without cutting corners. Moving back the completion date may be the least worse option.”

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