Leading the smart energy revolution

We are at the very heart of Britain’s modern energy revolution – a revolution that has become pivotal to realising a greener country and a more sustainable world.

Over the next couple of decades, the world’s energy system will be transformed almost unrecognisably by new digital technologies. This energy revolution will have a profound and lasting impact on both energy demand and supply, making it more connected, more reliable and – crucially – more sustainable. In tandem with modern technological breakthroughs, it is the requirement to decarbonise our energy usage that has become the major driver for this energy revolution.

Achieving a cleaner, greener and more efficient energy system has become pivotal to realising a more sustainable world, though not just in the face of climate change. The ever-expanding global population and rapid urbanisation of our cities is set to pose additional energy-related challenges in years to come, with growing demand placing even greater stress on power networks while traditional energy sources dwindle. The electrification of transport and – increasingly – heating will pose a particular challenge for the generation and distribution industry.

As a result, it has never been more important to modify and modernise our energy system to counter these universal challenges, not only by way of how energy is supplied, but also by nature of how (and when) we demand and use it.

Given the size of the task at hand, the energy revolution will require cohesive global action and cooperation to affect real and enduring transformation. Besides international policy makers, it is the energy sector itself, and companies like SMS, that has the greatest potential and responsibility to spearhead change.

As a major energy services and smart metering company with both technology and sustainability right at the very core of our ethos and business model, SMS Plc is leading the revolution in the United Kingdom through our commitment to delivering the future of smart energy.

How we are leading the way

The change in the UK energy market is driving new and innovative solutions to deliver cost savings and to meet carbon reduction commitments. Energy reduction, through changing consumer behaviour, is creating a large market for the installation and management of intelligent technology assets. Thanks to the development of our complete energy service, we are uniquely positioned to be a driving force as this market grows.

Why are smart meters so important to our digitally-driven energy transformation? Aside from providing more accurate energy billing (removing manual meter reading) and enabling consumers to better understand their energy usage, smart meter technology is a key component in the realisation of the smart energy grid – the digital, interconnected national network that will provide us with a more modern, more efficient, and cleaner supply of power.

Put simply, the smart grid will utilise a range of new technologies – with smart meters at the very centre of this chain – to allow for two-way communication between consumers and the energy network, enabling real-time, automatic responses to changing electric demand. According to the International Energy Agency, one billion households and 11 billion smart appliances could participate in interconnected electricity systems by 2040 thanks to smart meters and connected devices. The implications of this are huge – with the potential to lay the foundations for a carbon-free society in the future. You can read more about the smart grid and its expected benefits here.

Through our work to support UK government and energy suppliers in rolling out smart metering technology to the British public and SMEs, as well as providing MOP, MAM, and data services directly to the industrial and commercial sector, SMS Plc is playing a pivotal role in helping make the smart grid become a reality.

With sustainability having become a true global issue, corporate social responsibility (CSR) is today high on the agenda for organisations accountable for practising greener behaviour, as much as it is for an increasingly environmentally and socially conscious consumer market. Meanwhile, government policies aimed at encouraging businesses to combat climate change and promote economic prosperity – along with a generally improved understanding surrounding the commercial advantages of corporate sustainability – have helped heighten demand for energy efficiency services worldwide. By reducing their energy consumption, organisations are not only fulfilling a moral obligation to the environment and enhancing their public image, but also reaping the financial rewards from doing so as they significantly slash operational costs.

Owing to our combined expertise as a Data Collector/Data Aggregator (DCDA) and energy consultancy, we are assisting the UK industrial and commercial (I&C) sector in boosting energy efficiency and sustainability through the provision of our specialist energy management solutions. With the UK government challenging British businesses to deliver energy efficiency improvements of at least 20 per cent by 2030, we are also fulfilling a vital role in helping organisations become legally compliant with environmental obligations as the country looks to meet its carbon reduction commitments in the coming years.

At the same time, as the smart meter rollout gathers pace, we are additionally innovating to support energy suppliers in using the large amount of domestic energy consumption data now available to drive the sustainability agenda.

Besides smart meters, our smart energy future depends on the wider establishment of national green energy infrastructure, namely renewable energy generation, energy storage systems, and a countrywide network of public and private electric vehicle charge points. As a UK-wide multi-utility infrastructure solutions provider, we specialise in connections for renewable energy and storage projects, having done so on a large number of major developments around the country.

At the same time, we are also currently developing our capacity to play a leading role in expanding the national electric vehicle (EV) charging network and deployment of micro-generation through a specialist electricity connections, asset installation and asset finance service. Once the smart meter rollout has been completed, the establishment of this EV charging network is set to take over as potentially the biggest energy infrastructure project of our lifetime, creating numerous challenges and opportunities in the process as we look to accommodate the efficient integration of an estimated nine million EVs on our roads by 2030.

At SMS Plc, we are geared up to assist EV market stakeholders – the government, charging companies, energy suppliers, and businesses – in meeting this great challenge, and to realise the plethora of environmental and commercial opportunities that the EV revolution presents.