Hi-tech meters will save businesses money and CO2 emissions

An independent electricity company has become the first in the industry to introduce free hi-tech meters that can read be read remotely.

Northampton-based Opus Energy, which supplies small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), has this month embarked on a £5 million plan to fit all 35,000 customers with free Smart Meters in a move that could save millions.

Charlie Crossley Cooke, managing director of Opus Energy, said: "This is a significant investment for us but we feel strongly that when this type of technology is available, with so many benefits for our customers, it should be provided free of charge.

"Smart Meters will not only improve the accuracy of our customers' bills, the technology will also save them time and money, with the added benefit of helping to reduce climate change."

The meters will allow Opus, which supplies businesses such as Habitat and Deloitte and Touche, to take real time meter readings remotely saving the customer from having to submit their own meter readings.

It says this will make bills more accurate and save businesses money.

A study by The Carbon Trust concluded that replacing the 2.7 million manually read meters in the country's SMEs could save them £300 million every year.

And it could also yield savings of some five million tonnes of carbon dioxide - the equivalent to the carbon footprint of Bristol.

The study outlines a strong business case for the meters but acknowledge little financial incentive for energy suppliers to promote the new technology.

The trust believes government backing could boost uptake of the meters leading to significant and cost-effective carbon reductions.

For the full report titled Advanced metering for SMEs visit the trust's website

David Gibbs



Waste & resource management
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