BEAMA Welcomes Government's Smart Challenge

BEAMA Welcomes Government's Smart Challenge

Electrotechical manufacturing association BEAMA has welcomed the two documents ‘Towards a Smarter Future’ and ‘Smarter Grids: The Opportunity’ outlining the Government’s plans on the details for the phased approach to installing smart metering in all UK homes, and the future developments for smart grids and smart housing.

The association’s Chief Operating Officer, Dr Howard Porter, says: “The electrotechnical industry has been waiting for these announcements. We fully endorse the level of functionality presented for smart metering, which will provide the maximum benefits for consumers and industry. It also lays the basis for integration with smart grids outlined.

“The documents issued now present clear direction for the future. Industry is ready and prepared to swing into action to help the Government develop, and deliver, this ground breaking initiative.

“We were particularly pleased to see the clarity of thinking presented in the ‘Smarter Grids: The Opportunity’ document. This discussion paper provides a roadmap to 2050 with future interaction between the distribution network and energy users. The provision of real time data from smart meters enables enhanced communication between energy providers and energy consumers. This will facilitate improved management of the electricity supply grid and result in a more reliable and effective supply system with lower operating and maintenance costs.”

The installation of smart metering will also provide a better understanding of energy usage patterns in homes. Future homes will become energy producers through renewable technologies with more sophisticated supply and demand balancing. This will lead to a more tailored energy system of generation and supply through a smart electricity supply grid. This combined approach will give invaluable benefits in the way energy is both supplied and consumed.

The enhanced control over power flows within the supply grid will assist building the near zero carbon electricity supply system of the future. Connecting the increased generation from renewable technologies with potential developments in energy storage will be made easier, with dynamic data provided from the increasingly ‘smart’ system. The integration of low carbon electric vehicles will be key to this new grid.

Dr Porter continues: “The near zero-carbon supply grid will increase take-up of electrical technologies, particularly for space and water heating. In this area BEAMA is well placed to coordinate the input from the full range of electrotechnical manufacturers and will play a leading role in developing future supply systems.

“The installation of smart metering in every home is the first step towards revolutionising the way energy is supplied and distributed in the UK. Smart meters will open up many new services for householders and greater competition from energy suppliers for customers. This will put the consumers in a strong position to seek out the best deals from energy providers.

“Already, our members are providing ‘smart’ products for installation within homes. Smart meters will become the communication hub, which will facilitate better domestic coordinated energy management. We are fully behind the smart metering rollout and look forward to working with the Government in ensuring the best results for consumers, suppliers and UK plc.”

BEAMA members manufacturing Transmission and Distribution (T&D) equipment will soon bring forward their proposals concerning how modern T&D systems, including smart grids, can be realised. These proposals are included in a report commissioned by T&D Europe and prepared by the University of Genoa. BEAMA Director of Power, Nigel Grant, is a contributing author and the report will be presented at BEAMA’s Winter Conference (see below).

T&D Europe is the European Association of the Electricity Transmission and Distribution Equipment and Services Industry. BEAMA is the UK member.

BEAMA Smart Electricity Systems Conference (Feb ’09)
BEAMA’s winter conference - ‘Smart Electricity Systems’ - covers all technologies covered by the Government announcements. It’s a ‘must-attend’ event to help understand how industry can make the ambitious plans a reality.
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To book contact: BEAMA on 0207 793 3000 or

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