Smart meters deliver the knowledge to save power
When it comes to electricity consumption, a little knowledge goes a long way
Yet another prominent study has indicated that people who are provided with information about how much electricity they are using – and what it's costing them – find new ways to manage their power consumption.
The report authors estimate that in the U.S., where the research was conducted, just a two percent reduction would result in households saving a combined total of more than $3 billion per year.
Keeping an eye on your usage
There are numerous low-cost ways to reduce your electricity bill. But one of the obstacles to saving energy is a lack of detailed knowledge about your consumption.
With our old, mechanical meters, BC Hydro customers can only access their bi-monthly consumption data when their bill arrives.
This July, BC Hydro began installing 1.8 million smart meters across the province. They are an important step in the modernization of the province’s electrical grid, and they are one of the most essential technologies for our energy future.
In 2012, you will have access to your consumption data through a secure online account. New features enabled as a result of smart metering technology will give you new insights to make proactive steps to reduce your energy bills.
The online account will feature:
- Hourly consumption information in kilowatt hours (kWh) and in dollars – up to the last 24 hours;
- Estimated energy cost projections based on actual consumption patterns; and,
- Optional automatic updates when you're nearing your targets.
These tools and more will arm you with the knowledge to reduce your consumption.
Smart meters are the future
Smart meters will enable energy innovations, too. If you start to generate your own electricity using solar panels or a wind turbine, you’ll be able to sell excess power back to the grid.
You could also use your electric vehicle as a source of power during an outage.
It could be as simple, and as cool, as a glowing, ambient orb that sits on your bookshelf and changes colour as your electricity usage changes. Such simple devices, which make our energy consumption visible, will be possible with smart meters.
Learn more about smart meters:
Straight facts about smart meters in B.C.