Post tagged with "smart meters"

Our Thinking

12 things utilities need to know about one of the year’s biggest energy polls

  • By Casey Davis-Van Atta
  • August 21, 2014

From weighing an ox to predicting the future, it’s often said that there’s wisdom in crowds.

A new report from the global consulting firm Black & Veatch aims to tap into that wisdom by polling 576 top minds in the energy industry. What forces are pushing utilities to change? How are power providers responding to flattening load growth? With coal and nuclear plants slated for retirement, what will take their place?

Black & Veatch asked, and utility decisionmakers answered. Here are 12 key things we learned from the report.

1. Reliability is still king. With distributed generation, smart meters, and regulatory reform sweeping across the country, it’s easy to feel like there are no more knowns in the energy world. But for American utilities, one thing’s the same as it ever was: the paramount importance of delivering power on time, all the time. Black & Veatch found that reliability is still the number one concern in the industry.

top 10 issues

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Our Thinking

Watch Europe’s smart grid undergo a decade of explosive growth, in 14 seconds

  • By Casey Davis-Van Atta
  • August 12, 2014

What you’re about to see is Europe’s total investment in smart grid technology from January 2002 to June 2014 — first with bars, then with a heat map.

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Opower Labs

This neat data algorithm unlocks the power of smart grid technology—without using smart meters

  • By Justin Spradlin, John Vint, and Barry Fischer
  • July 29, 2014

Smart meters continue to transform the global utility landscape, offering cutting-edge features for energy providers and consumers alike — from outage detection to real-time consumption feedback.

In the US alone, the number of installed smart meters has approximately quadrupled over the past 5 years. These meters are collectively generating more than 1 billion usage data points every day — enabling vital data insights for utilities and their customers.

The smart grid is growing fast in other regions, too. European Union member states have collectively invested around 4 billion USD across hundreds of smart grid projects over the past decade. The UK is targeting nationwide smart meter coverage by 2020. And Japan’s largest electric company is working to equip all 27 million of its customers with advanced meters.

As projects like these unfold, smart meters are becoming the industry norm. But some regions are farther ahead than others. The Edison Electric Institute predicts that by 2015, only around half of US states will have smart meter penetration rates higher than 50 percent.

Smart Meter Penetration by 2015

Some states are farther ahead than others with smart meter installations. (Source: IEE Edison Institute, August 2013)

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