Germany Rejects Smart Meters

If the most economically successful yet environmentally obsessed country in Europe rejects smart meters, what does that say?

It says that Germany has come to the realization that smart meters do not deliver what they promise. They just deliver a higher cost to the homeowner.

Magdalena Klemun of greentechmedia.com wrote yesterday:

It’s a bitter pill for German smart meter manufacturers, but the news is easier to swallow for the country’s utility ratepayers: the German Ministry of Economics announced it will not follow EU recommendations to install smart meters for 80 percent of consumers by 2022.

The ministry reviewed a cost-benefit analysis by Ernst & Young and is concerned that the lion’s share of the costs could fall to households, while the bulk of benefit could go to industrial consumers with larger opportunities to reduce power consumption and leverage load shifting.

Ernst & Young’s study found higher costs than benefits for average households. If only customers that received a meter paid for them, it would cost €89 ($118) per household per year to cover device and installation costs, which is more than the expected monetary benefits. If costs are distributed among all consumers right from the start of the rollout, including customers that do not install a smart meter, the cost would drop to €29 ($38). The analysis extends until 2032, with AMI rollout assumed to begin in 2014.

The politicians in our country need to pay attention to the experience of other places.

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