A new consultation on the government’s proposals not to extend the deadline for businesses to opt out of the smart meter rollout has been launched.
Two million public and private sector organisations, including small shops, chain stores, schools and small industrial units, are expected to install the energy-saving technology by the end of the decade as part of the government’s programme.
But they can currently opt out of the scheme if they install “advanced meters” by April 2016 to meet their rollout obligations.
The programme is expected to generate benefits of around £1.9 billion according to DECC.
The £10.9 billion scheme has however been hit with delays, with some of the elements pushed back by six months.
The Data and Communications Company (DCC) – run by outsourcing group Capita – which is responsible for linking the 53 million smart meters with suppliers, network operators and energy services companies, revised its plans which was confirmed by DECC earlier this month.
The government is also inviting views on the existing policy position which allows suppliers to use communications services other than those provided by the DCC for the technology they install at non-domestic premises. It is consulting on whether it should remove this policy.
The consultation runs until 15th June 2015.
Earlier this month the Energy and Climate Change Committee warned the smart meter rollout is “veering off track” and could be a “costly failure”.