Nobody now pretends that the long-standing Government target, to put 63 million smart meters, into every home and SME by this January, stands any chance of being met. What is most galling is the news that eight out of the 25 electricity vendors charged with delivering this scheme are still installing those seriously old-fashioned SMETS-1 meters.
Those are the clunky old devices that don’t work if you change supplier, won’t operate with differential time tariffs, and consistently break down. They were officially supposed to be off the market four years ago. This spring, Energy Minister Claire Perry announced that henceforth absolutely no more old meters would be installed; only the SMETS-2 versions, which are vaguely worthy of the epithet “smart”.
But the old meters remain – unsurprisingly because they are useless. And so, regardless of any ministerial diktat, there are now well over 13 million occupying space in British buildings. Every single one of which will require costly upgrading to work properly. When will we learn?