The issue of water and water metering is becoming an issue not only of billing, but also of having enough for everyone to drink. In Australia a very long and severe drought finally may be broken. The lessons learned indicate that a handful of customers did not heed the regulations for water use. This failure by a few consumed more than 30 percent of the total water, and the fact that meters could only be read every 90 days meant that they were not caught until too late. Farmers and other large water consumers could have traded water rights to the cities, but they did not have the instrumentation to make it possible. The result is that the Australian water establishment is now serious about being able to deal with water metering – daily readings during drought periods, and monthly readings at other times.
The Smart Energy Alliance (SEA) is working with many of the Australian companies to look at the overall needs for water metering, changes in regulations to allow the trading of water rights, and how desalination fits into overall industry structure. Water is a limited resource and making sure that it is used fairly is important to making sure that people can meet their minimum needs. At a large US water company the SEA looked at another issue – one of non-revenue water (leakage). It is very costly to process raw water into drinking water and then lose it. The SEA is working to help integrate meter readings and other sensor information into minimum night flows and help track down leaks. In the first 18 months of the project, 40 percent of the leakage was localised and fixed.
The Smart Energy Alliance combines deep industry experience with a broad understanding of technology solutions from some of the world’s most trusted brands to accelerate adoption of new technologies in the utility industry globally. For more information on the Smart Energy Alliance, visit www.smart-energy-alliance.com