Smart meters are just, well, smart. They allow real-time pricing (f.ex. off peak electricity is less expensive than during peak demand), something that has a big impact on people’s behavior. It basically rewards virtue: If you pay attention, you can save more, and if you don’t, you’ll pay more.
Texas utility Oncor is working with Swiss smart-meter company Landis+Gyr to roll out 3 million advanced meters by 2012. The bill is expected to be $690 million dollars, and will be first paid by customers (directly or indirectly), but over time it will more than pay for itself in electricity savings and a reduced need to built new power plants.
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