A nationwide electricity smart meter implementation is under development by Northern Ireland’s Department for the Economy.
The decision to go ahead with a smart meter implementation for electricity follows the completion of a cost-benefit analysis, which was prepared with KPMG and investigated a range of rollout scenarios.
Of these, a ‘fast’ rollout over six years starting in 2027 was found to deliver the highest ‘net present value’ of £301 million ($382 million, in 2022 terms) and a benefit-cost ratio of 1.57 and is the preferred option. Conversely, the slowest ‘phased’ approach of replacing existing meters at end of life with a smart meter – estimated to run to about 2044 – also had a benefit-cost ratio above 1, albeit marginal at 1.17 but an NPV of just £71 million.
Similar scenarios were also run for gas smart metering. However, the benefits were considered not to be significant and a gas smart meter rollout is not being pursued at this stage. In this case, the ‘fast’ rollout benefit-cost ratio was marginal at 1.12 and the NPV was £41 million.
As an initial step in the implementation, the Department for the Economy has indicated in its energy strategy action plan for 2023 that it intends to work with stakeholders building […]