Smart electricity meters in rural India a win-win, says ADB

As part of its USD 200 million loan for Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) to implement various demand-side energy efficiency projects in India, the ADB assisted pilot is running in a village in Varanasi where as many as 5,000 households have got smart meters with satellite communication technology installed by EESL.

Asian Development Bank (ADB) is planning to scale up a satellite-based smart meters project, implemented in a village in Uttar Pradesh, as it finds it to be a win-win solution for several stakeholders, including the consumers as well as discoms.

As part of its USD 200 million loan for Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) to implement various demand-side energy efficiency projects in India, the ADB assisted pilot is running in a village in Varanasi where as many as 5,000 households have got smart meters with satellite communication technology installed by EESL.

ADB is considering scaling up this project through a proposed second plan, ADB's Yongping Zhai said in a blog.

Zhai, who is the chief of energy sector group, sustainable development and climate department, said: "We have observed that smart meters bring benefits to four key stakeholders."

First, each rural consumer enjoys improved power quality, shorter outage durations, and flexible payment options (pre-paid or post-paid).

Smart meters also provide real-time information about the electricity usage through a mobile app, so consumers can detect any wastage and optimise electricity consumption to save money, he said.

Smart meters also prepare rural households for distributed and decarbonised future of energy systems.

When more rural households install distributed solar photovoltaic panels on their rooftops, smart meters can be used as net metering -- it means surplus solar power can be transferred to the grid, allowing customers to offset the electricity bills, he said.

[https://www.zeebiz.com/india/news-smart-electricity-meters-in-rural-india-a-win-win-says-adb-69146 Sun, Oct 28, 2018]