California utility approves AMI project to address drought


The five-year contract allows the California state water utility to replace existing water meters with smart meters to ensure accurate billing as well as to help customers to reduce their water usage and costs.

According to a local source,  the installation of the system is also expected to help reduce the operational costs of the water department by enabling quick detection of water leakages and remote meter reads.

[quote] In addition, the infrastructure will provide customer notifications when consumption is excessive to allow users to monitor and manage their water usages.

The signing of the contract is said to fall under EVWD’s efforts to enhance management of water to address the scarcity of water as a result of the drought which is affecting the state for the past five years. The utility provides water to consumers in San Bernadino and its surrounding areas.

Smart water funding

The project will be funded by a loan granted the local water district by the California Department of Water Resources.

The news follows last week’s announcement by the US senate that it is allocating US$37.5bn to fund energy and water programmes in 2017.

The funding will be channelled to accelerate the growth of the two sectors through the department of energy, the US Army Corps of Engineers and the Bereau of Reclamation as from the last quarter of 2016.

According to a local publication, the capital is expected to increase the country’s energy and water security as well as improve flood control projects. [Global smart water metering market worth US$5.51bn by 2021].

The approval of the funds by the Senate marks the first time the House has approved a stand-alone bill to fund energy and water projects since 2009.

Meanwhile, the US city of Berea in Ohio partnered with metering solutions company Badger Meter and metering firm NECO for the rollout of a smart water meters project.

Under the programme, the city will install some 4,000 Badger water meters with assistance from NECO to reduce non-revenue water through accurate water billing and leak detections.

Commenting on the development, Cyril Kleem, mayor of Berea city said: “Some meters in the city are 50 years old, they need to be replaced.”