Smart meter manufacturers form advocacy group

Posted by: Metering.com

January 17, 2012

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The Smart Meter Manufacturers’ Association of America (SMMAA) was formed to be a consensus-based advocacy group consisting of smart meter manufacturers, which represent roughly 99% of the installed base of electric meters currently deployed. Members of the SMMAA include Echelon, Elster, GE, Itron, Landis+Gyr and Sensus.

The SMMAA’s goal is to extol the benefits of smart meter and to educate stakeholders on perceptions pertaining to their deployment.

Here are some of the key areas of interest for the SMMAA along with some supportive facts.

Benefits:

  • Consumer empowerment: “An analysis by the Electric Power Research Institute estimates that the implementation of smart grid technologies could reduce electricity use by more than 4% by 2030.” (Source: President Obama’s White House)
  • Green benefits: One utility has saved 4 million gallons of gasoline this year. Smart meters can also support electric vehicle charging and integrating renewable energy.
  • Operational costs savings: Automation of meter reading and field services can represent considerable savings often representing more than 50% of the benefits for project business case.
  • Safety: Fewer trucks on the road also equal fewer accidents and opportunities for injuries. One utility plans to reduce its workforce injuries by 100 each year with smart meters.

Meter accuracy:
For over 100 years, accuracy has always been the core requirement for metering. Accuracy tests on smart meters have been performed on behalf of or in conjunction with state commissions in Ohio, California and Texas. Independent third party firms conducted these tests which resulted in proof that smart meters are at least as accurate as standard meters.

RF emissions:
The independent non-profit California Council of Science and Technology (CCST) study found that “even if smart meters were on 100% of the time, an individual’s exposure from ten feet away is 250-1,250 times less than the exposure level from holding a cell phone to one’s ear.”

Job creation:
According to the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), “the clean energy industry is one of our fastest growing sectors, with venture capitalists, utilities, and businesses investing billions in domestic solar, wind, energy efficiency, smart grid, and electric vehicle companies and projects”.

Customer acceptance:
A survey including CenterPoint Energy and the DOE asked 500 homeowners about their experience using smart meters and inhome displays. Here are the results: 

  • 71% changed behaviours by getting data about their real time energy use
  • 83% turned off lights more often
  • 51% adjusted thermostats
  • 97% plan to continue using smart meters.

More information on the SMMAA and its members can be found on www.smmaa.org

David Elve, President, SMMAA

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