Smart grid technology will cost £27 billion to develop and deploy, but sticking to conventional technology to upgrade the UK’s ageing electricity infrastructure between now and 2050 will cost £19 billion more.
Those are the findings of a major new piece of research commissioned by the UK’s smart grid industry and written by Ernst and Young, which concludes Britain could see major economic and carbon reduction benefits from the development of smart grid. However, it warns that there is a “decreasing time window” for the UK to be a world leader in the technology, because of competition from abroad, and that failure to deploy smart grid will push up domestic electric costs and could mean the UK misses its carbon reduction targets.
But the report, commissioned by SmartGrid UK, founded by the UK’s leading smart grid companies including British Gas, BT, Cable & Wireless and Oracle, warns that although the UK is currently well placed to become a world leader in smart grid technology, there is a “decreasing time window to do so” with other countries, notably South Korea, China and the USA all developing smart grids.
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