Global Smart Water Metering & Intelligent Data Utilisation Congress 2023
Today, many water authorities in the United Kingdom, Europe, and the rest of the world are actively evaluating the benefits of introducing smart metering programmes. Several water utilities in the UK, for example, are considering implementing smart metering technologies as a means of combating climate change and the resulting water scarcity that potentially could become widespread by 2035.
Since LBCG held its first metering conference in 2006, a great deal has changed, and technology has advanced dramatically. There are currently intelligent metering technologies that can be integrated with valves for leakage and network management. And more complex solutions are now available for retrofitting legacy meters with advanced digital capabilities. In addition, applications and mobile-enabled gadgets that go beyond traditional smart meters now provide users with the ability to monitor their own consumption, make smarter decisions and change core behaviours.
During the research phase for this conference, we spoke at length with industry representatives about the intended benefits of smart metering technologies, and it is evident that there is no one-size-fits-all answer. In the current era of rising inflation and cost-of-living problems plaguing many western economies, business cases are not always so obvious or straightforward to justify. Some water authorities prioritise demand control, while others concentrate on expense reduction or income growth. In spite of this, it is evident that over 85 per cent of the 100 water firms with whom we spoke are seriously considering installing smart metering technology or alternatively, some form of advanced customer data application before 2030.
Numerous senior-level water professionals witness that for a smart metering technology solution to be cost-effective, it must be entirely upgradable and future-proof. Water Utilities cannot afford to invest in a smart metering scheme that may become obsolete in whole or in part. This is only one example of a fundamental consideration that must be made when establishing end-to-end smart metering implementation programmes.
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