More Americans using smart meters, report says

Every day, the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) releases a special article covering some form of green technology being used in America. On November 1, the government organization published its latest findings on the usage of smart e-meters, devices that aid in energy conservation and communication between customers and their electricity providers.

According to the results, the number of Americans using these machines rose from 33 million in 2011 to roughly 36 million so far in 2012, an approximately 23 percent rise. This figure suggests that more people are looking at options to reduce their utility bills. One of the benefits of smart meters is the fact that, in some cases, customers can program their devices to turn off at certain times, enabling them to cut down on power consumption. Additionally, these products allow companies to aid their clients in finding energy efficiency solutions.

In one demonstration of the benefits of smart meters, the DoE discussed an accident during October when a Maryland town lost some of its power when a tree collapsed. Because of the information updates afforded by smart meters, electricity providers were able to respond more quickly to the outage.

The DoE conceded in its report that there are some challenges associated with smart meters, including data privacy and occasional price increases associated with the devices. However, many providers are reportedly instituting changes to their systems to make them more affordable.

If the publication is any indication, we expect more consumers to utilize smart meters in their homes. Not only will these devices help them reduce the amount of electricity they use on a daily basis, but smart meters will put a few extra dollars in their pocket while those homeowners practice a more low-impact lifestyle.

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