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Energy: Metering

Volume 481: debated on Monday 27 October 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how long he expects the work evaluation of smart meters to take; who is conducting the evaluation; and when he expects to take the next steps towards wider installation of smart meters. (226943)

[holding answer 14 October 2008]: The Government published a response to their 2007 consultation on energy billing and metering in April this year. At that stage, the economic impact assessment did not indicate a positive case for a roll-out of smart metering to all domestic customers. However, in a project of this scale the figures carry a high degree of uncertainty and many of the benefits are difficult to quantify in monetary terms. Officials have therefore been undertaking further work with stakeholders, including contracting some independent consultancy work, to ensure that the Government have the best possible understanding of costs, benefits and issues relating to smart metering. The intention is for Ministers to take a decision soon on whether to roll-out smart meters to domestic customers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress his Department has made in requiring electricity and gas suppliers to provide advanced meters to electricity customers in Profile 5-8 and gas customers with annual consumption above 732MWh by 2013; and if he will make a statement. (225365)

In July 2008, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform consulted on final proposals to ensure that these customers would be provided with advanced metering by 31 December 2013. This consultation closed on 5 September. My Department will shortly issue its response to this consultation, with a final licence modification, with a view to having the new arrangements in place in January 2009, subject to the passage of the Energy Bill.