The smart meter rollouts in Europe resemble in a way the epic poems of the ancient past. Like the Odyssey, this pan-European rollout is a decade (or rather more) in the making, and like the Iliad, utilities have to fight their way through many different fronts to ‘conquer’. It is definitely not an easy, but a rather complex task.
About a month ago, the UK celebrated the 10 millionth smart meter installation on one network alone. It was indeed a milestone not only for the UK but for Europe in general. Why? “Because smart meters represent an important asset for the smart grid,” says Francisco Puente, Director at Escan Energy Consulting. They provide knowledge to the consumer so she can save energy and they provide data to the utilities, that is useful for maintenance and the smooth operation of the grid, to say the least.
However, not all European countries are doing as well as the UK. Some do. Some, like Estonia, do even better. But many are still behind regarding the EU Commission smart meter rollout goals for 2020. And this is largely due to the fact that the EU Commission suggestions need to be validated – voted upon – by the various European Parliaments.
Not all member states have the same views on the matter or an equally evolved grid. This plurality is the beauty, but sometimes also the obstacle that the European family has to face. And what is needed for these obstacles to vanish, is an open dialogue between the various actors of the European energy sector, both at the regional and pan-European level.
However, dialogues need platforms or fora as the soil upon which they will flourish. Enlit Europe 365 is such a forum that promotes dialogue. Here, experts from all types of companies in the energy sector network and discuss issues.
Next Tuesday, March 30, experts are going to discuss smart metering in Europe. In two distinct and diverse webinars, hosted by Enlit Europe’s brand new Data Series, representatives from various energy companies will discuss the smart metering deployment within the concept of the smart city in the morning, and the ethical, safety and data management topics in the afternoon.
As data is at the core of the digital transformation that the energy sector is undergoing for the past few years, the Data Series aims at promoting discussions focused on data flow and exchange, data-driven innovation, data security and the technologies that enable all that, but with a twist: The consumer is at the core of all strategies and all data-related projects we focus on.
In the morning, the webinar titled Smart Utility Open Meters focuses on “the deployment of the smart meter within the smart city and in what ways it facilitates the smart utility and the role of the customer”, as Gianni Ceneri, Head of the Global Smart Metering Team at ENEL says. How does a robust smart meter rollout help Renewable Energy Sources integration and in what ways smart meters and smart appliances assist the energy communities in becoming active stakeholders of the smart grid. Representatives from ENEL, ARERA, ANIE, etc., are going to explain how smart meters will contribute to energy distribution infrastructure evolution and digitalisation as well as in providing services in smart cities.
In the afternoon, representatives from Escan Energy Consulting, Italgas, Tauron Dystrybucja S.A, Meters and More, Critical Software and Pinsent Masons LLP, will participate at the webinar titled Knock Knock Your Smart Meter is Calling. This discussion is going to be focused on the innovations that regard smart meters. Topics like smart metering security, ethics, data management, legal issues and sustainability will be discussed. Key speakers will introduce not only the latest concerns but also the possibilities and the opportunities they can bring to nowadays society.
Although not exhaustive, these two webinars are a fine way of starting both the conversation on smart metering made in Europe, as well as the Easter festivities due to the epic aspect of the discussion. Join us!
Editor, Smart Energy International