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NB Power's Approach for a Revised Smart Meter Plan
By Utilities Tech Outlook | Wednesday, April 03, 2019
NB Power launched a new home energy saving program to help the residents of New Brunswickers who are constructing new homes. The New Home Energy Savings Program will benefit the residents to build a home efficiently and save money. Energy efficiency will be beneficial for the economy as well as the environment. NB Power is conducting a public relation campaign to gain support for itssmart meter plan. The utility wants public consultation before bringing back the $122 million smart meter plan to Energy and Utility Board (EUB) this year. The board had previously rejected the proposal stating that the advantages don’t outweigh the fee to the shopper, and now, NB reported that utilities had been revised to provide financial saving benefit to the buyers.
NB is conducting sessions with municipalities to change the people’s perception on the meter. The utility has made changes with the help of previously received notes from the EUB. Former Power and Useful resource Improvement Minister Rick Doucet stated that the NB energy must be more of enterprise savvy as it operates independently from authorities; furthermore, he said that the utility must demonstrate how the spending will benefit the ratepayers before investing the money. The meter is expected to account energy usage more accurately and transmit it wirelessly to the authority which also will allow the customer to plan their energy usage better. The utility was not deterred from applying again when EUB rejected the plan. Gaetan Thomas said that more research had been done by the utility and this time dollar figure was attached to the savings rate that was mentioned in the previous year.
The meter is expected to reduce power wastage by 0.4 percent, but according to new information, power savings is supposed to be up to one or two percent. This new power saving factor will take the business case from minus $1 million to positive $10 million in savings. The savings factor couldn’t be calculated previously by NB due to lack of data. Now, the smart meter request is ready to be placed again when NB is prepared.