Blog > UK needs smart grid as complement to smart meters


UK needs smart grid as complement to smart meters

Tuesday 24th April 2012

A report announced today by Ernst & Young suggests that a UK smart grid could pump £13 billion into the UK economy and create 10,000 new jobs. Moreover, Bill Easton, utilities director at Ernst & Young, commented that: "In addition to the direct economic benefits, we can also expect to see wider economic benefits to the UK, providing a welcome boost to growth, jobs and exports."

Coming a day after Ofgem announced its first Smart Grid Evaluation Framework, designed to encourage implementation of smart grids by the energy suppliers, today’s report certainly makes a very attractive case for a UK smart grid.

Although the report sounds of note of caution over slow adoption of smart grid technologies, Robert McNamara, manager of SmartGrid GB highlights that: "failure to deploy a smart grid will hamper development of clean tech industries and push up domestic electric costs."

This is a key point. Having committed to significant investment, through the Green Deal and the smart meter roll out, to bringing down consumer energy bills and improving domestic energy efficiency can the Government really ignore the energy infrastructure outside of people’s homes?

On a day when the Prime Minister has been accused of backing down on his environmental promises today’s report shows how the smart grid doesn’t have to be a burden to be endured for the sake of emissions targets, but a positive boon for the country.

With the US and China making strides in their smart grid roll outs the UK would be churlish to ignore the benefits the technology can bring. We must ensure that the drive for energy efficiency doesn’t stop outside people’s houses.


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