Smart meter rollout pushed back to 2024
Compare the Market has welcomed the Government’s extension of the smart meter rollout to 2024.
The Government was originally committed to all homes and small businesses being offered a smart meter by the end of 2020, although customers are not obliged to have them.
Nearly 15 million smart and advance meters are now operating in British homes and businesses, according to Government figures.
But there have been problems with the rollout, including smart meters not working if a customer switched to a different supplier.
“It has been clear for some time that Smart Meters are a smart idea marred by a clumsy rollout,” said Pete Earl, Head of Energy at Compare the Market.
“It has finally dawned on the Government that meeting the mountain of smart meter installations before the 2020 deadline simply isn’t possible. Installing 34,000 meters a day – the amount needed to meet the 2020 deadline – was unlikely from the offset. As well as being a wholly unrealistic target for suppliers, the smart meter roll-out has been plagued with problems from day one."
Pete added: “With the government currently consulting on an extension to the deadline, there is hope that some of the problems associated with the shoddy roll-out – including in some cases smart meters losing their smart functionality when switching supplier – might be addressed. Until this happens consumer confidence in the programme will remain lower than it should be.”
The government said it predicts just half of households will have a smart meter by 2020.