Page 20 - European Energy Innovation - Winter 2014
P. 20
Winter 2014 European Energy Innovation


Successful smart technology
starts with smart consumers

In the coming decade, our entire energy to various stakeholders to gain should be simple, uncluttered,
system will change drastically. Especially insight in energy data and and modern. It should be offered,
from the consumer’s perspective, much usage. The consumer does care not sought after. The inter-play
will change. Our energy system will about a warm house, sufficient of outstanding pre-offering,
function (best) on the assumption that electricity in peak times, lower pre-technology education,
the consumer participated in the market, bills, comfort and being in especially from independent
they may own and operate generation control. An obstacle is that many sources is an extremely important
capacity, and use smart technology consumers have been confronted way to prepare consumers for
to manage their consumption. This in with smart meter infrastructure the program to come. As a first
turn can result in a reduction on their technologies and related costs step, a consumer must see the
electricity bills, a reduction in the cost of without sufficient understanding bigger picture, the reason why
network operations, and increased energy of how that technology might the utility is embarking on this
efficiency. If we want to reach Europe’s assist to manage their energy action, why the customer should
Energy Efficiency targets set for 2020 and consumption. be interested and why the
2030, we need consumers to engage in community should be working
the new energy system. Not an easy task. What needs to be done, soon! together. Only then should
technology be introduced. It is
We do not have the illusion the INFORM after all, not the technology that
consumer will care too much The VaasaETT Report Empower is the objective; it is only a means
about the meter itself. The Demand II1, authorized by to an end.
smart meter is not a solution in ESMIG, indicates 10 steps to
itself, but a central part of an generate consumer awareness, ESMIG is, together with EDSO
infrastructure that offers various involvement and engagement. for Smart Grids, developing “My
smart grid-related functionalities Generally, any type of consumer Smart Energy”: a portal targeting
Figure 1: The Smart Energy System (ESMIG) information and education tool European consumers explaining
how consumers will be able to
manage their bills, make a more
sustainable future environment
and rely on energy supply with
the help of smart meters and
smart grids.

For public acceptance of smart
metering and use of energy
management services, suitable
privacy and data protection
safeguards need to be in place so
that consumers are assured their
data is treated securely and their
privacy is not infringed.

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