Smart meters to save UK households only £11 a year, report finds

(The Guardian, 21 Jul 2018) Report by MPs and peers says predicted benefits of scheme ‘likely to be slashed further’.

Government predictions of the savings smart meters will generate for consumers are inflated, out of date and based on a number of questionable assumptions, a group of MPs and peers has said.

They also said the rollout of smart meters risked going over budget, was past its deadline and must be reviewed immediately.

The £11bn scheme to put 53m devices in 30m homes and small businesses by 2020 has been “plagued by repeated delays and cost increases”, the head of the British Infrastructure Group of Parliamentarians (BIG) said.

The group also said high numbers of the devices had gone “dumb” after installation because of problems caused by switching provider or mobile data coverage.

The public spending watchdog, the National Audit Office, is already investigating the project, which is led by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), for a third time.

In a report backed by 93 MPs, the BIG said suppliers were almost certain to miss the 2020 rollout deadline and that its benefits were “likely to be slashed even further”.

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The Guardian, 21 Jul 2018: Smart meters to save UK households only £11 a year, report finds