Smart meters

I’m very disappointed to see the latest link between the RSPB and smart energy GB.

Firstly there’s the ridiculous statement that “the humble smart meter in your home has a major impact on how we protect and nurture our wildlife” - maybe someone should have read this carefully before publishing as it’s obvious nonsense! 

Secondly, what about the considerable effect on the environment of all those engineer visits, not to mention the huge number of working energy meters that end up being scrapped?

in addition there’s the £13bn cost to the country of installing these meters. What about spending that on protecting and nurturing our wildlife (or even on feeding hungry children or fighting COVID)?

Getting involved with this thorny subject and in essence in politics is, in my opinion, a mistake. I am usually a strong supporter of the RSPB but I’m afraid tharI’ll be scaling back my support from now on. 

  • If we're talking about the same thing, we had a new "Linky" meter installed a few months ago & for people who control their usage it's a nightmare. For the last 30 years we have gone to our meter on a monthly basis, taken the reading & calculated the usage, simple maths. Now we have had to set up an on-line account, & jump through hoops every time we go on to find out what our usage has been in the last month. In fact last month they wouldn't let Ron in on his i-pad AP & had to do it through a new account set up on the computer. It's technology gone mad!! It is also a huge waste to destroy the old meters that worked perfectly. There are some communes over here who have banned them on health safety fears due to the signals it sends out. I can't see where the environemental bit comes in.

    Best wishes

    Hazel in the Gironde estuary, France

  • In reply to Noisette:

    This must be what hes talking about Hazel

    I am sick of being offered one here in Scotland and until it becomes law that we all must have them installed I shall keep refusing as heard so many horror stories about them!

    (Pardon the Scottish Accent)

  • I believe they're also a nightmare for people who have them installed.....but live in areas where mobile signal is 'limited'.

    We agree they're not worth having. I do think there is a place for them in terms of educating people who aren't aware tumble driers use a lot of energy for example. Nothing wrong with a washing line for at least six months of the year......Likewise, swapping for energy saving lightbulbs saves if people aren't aware of those types of things, the meters help.....but otherwise, they aren't worth having and are a waste of resources IMO.

    Having said that, charities are finding it hard to raise money this year, so I wouldn't knock them for collaborating with businesses to open up new revenue sources.

  • Smart meters aren't for the consumer's benefit at all - sure, it may make some people realise how much they're using and turn stuff off instead - or go for a more economical appliance next time they buy one, but that's small beer. The true purpose of smart meters is to allow control of your consumption in a future where everyone is using a lot more power. So it may stop your car charging for a while or turn off your fridge for an hour should there be a shortfall of power being generated. The meter will be the network's gateway to the smart appliances in your home, with remote meter reading an added bonus (fewer meter reader jobs). There'll be financial incentives (ie a cheaper tariff) no doubt.
    Early smart meters were really poor, needing to be replaced if you changed suppliers (so terribly wasteful), but apparently newer versions have overcome that problem. As Robbo says, their network connection is via a built-in mobile phone SIM, so they are vulnerable to poor reception (and, since the meter is invariably in a cellar, under the stairs or similar, that's more likely than you might expect).
    Unfortunately, the drive to get them installed is government driven - the suppliers all have targets they have to meet, hence their pushing so hard. Ultimately we'll all end up with them I'm sure, but I too will simply ignore the letters until I have no choice!


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  • First, I'm not a fan of smart meters, but that is me personally, but then we keep a close watch on the gas and electricity we use.

    However, for some folk who are absent mended, it could be a beneficial way of saving money on their energy bills, particularly if they leave a light on in a room when the vacate it, which indirectly, should help the environment.

    As for old meters being scrapped, later ones they are often refurbished and reused when a meter has gone faulty enabling quick replacements without the need to try and repair. I know, because a few years ago, we had four in the space of a week, and I asked the gas engineer why they kept going faulty.

    The old ones that are not up to the latest legislation will be stripped and many components recycled or in some cases, reused.

    I'm also well aware that many recycling processes are not as environmentally friendly as we believe. It really is worrying when we ship stuff across the seas to other countries to deal with, or just dump and leave to rot over hundreds of years!

    However, one thing to keep in mind, statistics can be made to tell the story the statistician, or the person(s) employing the statistician wants to tell, so be very aware of many energy and environment saving claims, from all sources, and one in particular which is close to my heart, is electric vehicles.


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