Martin Lidegaard,
Minister Climate,
Energy and Building,
Denmark
 
By Jonathan Spencer Jones

Denmark is the next country in Europe to set out its smart meter ambitions – and all homes in Denmark are to have smart electric meters recording hourly consumption by 2020, Climate, Energy and Building Minister Martin Lidegaard announced yesterday.

Currently about half of the homes in Denmark have a smart meter installed – these accounting for about three-quarters of the consumption. With the signing of a new executive order by Minister Lidegaard, the rollout will be completed to the remainder of the homes.

According to a ministry statement the investment in the smart meters will be quickly recovered. The ministry anticipates a reduction in power consumption by 2 percent, which corresponds to a saving of DKK180 (US$32) per year for an average homeowner. Further, hourly settlement will lead to increased competition in the electricity market, which could give the homeowner a further saving of over DKK100 (US$18) per year.

Consumers with heat pumps and electric cars are expected to be among the biggest beneficiaries, as these will follow the price of electricity. It is also hoped that new products and services, such as smart appliances, will emerge in the coming years.

“The potential is enormous,” said Minister Lidegaard. “With the decision to install smart meters in every home, we are sending a signal to companies that they need to start thinking anew. We need to capitalize on our technological edge, thus creating jobs in Denmark.”

The order is now up for consultation, with the Red-Green Alliance (Enhedslisten) already having indicated its support for the smart meter rollout.

The full rollout of smart metering with hourly settlement is at the heart of Denmark’s smart grid strategy, which was launched earlier this year. According to the plan much of the next year will be taken up with the development of the hourly settlement model, and the remainder of the smart meters will be installed from 2016 on.

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