Questions about the benefits of the smart meter and RF module

  1. 3. Question about the Functionalities of the smart meter and RF module
  2. 3.1. Why are the old meters being changed?
  3. 3.2. What benefits do the new smart meter offer me as a customer?
  4. 3.3. Will the new meters help me better manage my energy consumption?
  5. 3.4. Will the new smart meter help me become more environmentally friendly?
  6. 3.5. Will the smart meters allow Enemalta PLC to generate energy more efficiently?
  7. 3.6. Are there any social benefits that will be reaped through the introduction of smart meter technology?
  8. 3.7. Will the new devices allow Enemalta PLC and Water Services Corporation to offer me new tariffs that fit my life style?

3   Question about the Functionalities of the smart meter and RF module

3.1   Why are the old meters being changed?

The utilities are introducing state-of-the-art technology which offers greater simplicity, rapidity, transparency and flexibility. The new meters will improve the service we provide to our customer (e.g. eliminate estimated billing), increase efficiency in certain operations (e.g. reduce meter reading costs substantially) and provide social and environmental benefits (e.g. reduce electricity theft and reduce CO2 emissions).

3.2   What benefits do the new smart meter offer me as a customer?

Smart metering offers a myriad of benefits, however not all these will be available immediately upon installation in your premises. This is because some benefits such as differential contracts for example will only be offered after a substantial number of meters are installed or when new back-office software is installed (e.g. prepayment). One early benefit is that the Utilities can communicate remotely with the smart meter. This means an end to the inconvenience of a meter reader’s visit once the smart meter is installed and subsequently the area in which you live in is connected remotely to our central system. Following this, all your bills will be issued on actual readings thus eliminating estimated bills.

3.3   Will the new meters help me better manage my energy consumption?

Yes. The meter displays more useful information than the current meter. Moreover, you will be able to securely access consumption information on-line to better understand your consumption patterns.

3.4   Will the new smart meter help me become more environmentally friendly?

Yes. It will help you identify the periods of the day, week or year your electricity consumption is higher, enabling you to reduce or shift this consumption to other times. Once all smart meters are installed, the Utilities will be able to promote different tariff bands which will reflect better the cost of electricity being generated at different times of the day, week or year. By changing your consumption habits you will not only be reducing your CO2 footprint but also saving on your electricity bill.

3.5   Will the smart meters allow Enemalta PLC to generate energy more efficiently?

Once all smart meters are installed, Enemalta PLC will collect more accurate and detailed statistics of consumption and load by time of the day, period of the year, as well as locality and areas around the island. This will help Enemalta PLC for medium-term grid infrastructure planning. For short term efficiencies, the Utilities could also enter in contractual agreements with large consumers to limit their load at critical peak times, therefore minimizing the chances of power cuts in certain areas. It is also technically possible to mass curtail power in large areas (limit power load on a large number of households) in the case of the risk of a large outage to prevent widespread and prolonged power cuts.

3.6   Are there any social benefits that will be reaped through the introduction of smart meter technology?

There are several social benefits namely:
– All consumers will benefit from more information and better control over consumption, however this will provide most benefit to low income households;
– The smart meters will reduce electricity theft;
– The Corporations will reduce certain costs such as meter reading, billing inefficiencies, disconnection and re-connection costs and be able to transfer such savings onto the consumer;
– Introduction of contracts which accurately reflect the consumption requirements of different customer groups.
– Reducing electricity peak loads by incentivizing changes in consumption patterns will reduce the country’s CO2 footprint as well as postpone investment in very expensive generation plants.

3.7   Will the new devices allow Enemalta PLC and Water Services Corporation to offer me new tariffs that fit my life style?

Enemalta PLC and Water Services Corporation will consider offering differential contracts to better suit the different lifestyles of its consumers. However this will only happen once all smart meters have been installed and consumption patterns are studied in detail.