A major operation is taking place throughout our country: in the coming years the old analogue gas and electricity meters are being replaced by (digital) smart meters.
Expectations ran high from the start of the operation: the accessibility to new and useful digital applications would increase visibility and awareness of energy for consumers, who would surely start saving on their energy usage… However these assumptions did not pan out. The PBL Netherlands Environmental Assesment Agency. published a research report in 2016 indicating that energy savings were much smaller than expected because data from the smart meters were not being conveyed to users in an appealing manner.
According to PBL Agency international research shows that good feedback on energy use leads to energy savings. The availability of accessible and attractive feedback system would lead users to awareness and consequently to energy saving behaviour. Better feedback could lead to 10 PJ reduction in households. There are several feedback systems available, in different models and variations.
Currently the PBL Agency, in cooperation with municipalites, housing institutions, tenants-cooperations and power companies is setting up field research to assess the efficacy of selected feedback systems. In this project, the energy use of a selected group of households with a given feedback system will be compared to a selected group without such a system.
Energysense has been asked to execute the monitoring in this research. With the use of our data infrastructure we are in a position to generate insights on the energy use of participating households. PBL Agency will put out a questionnaire to the participating households at the end of the monitoring period, after data on energy usage from smart meters will be combined with the results of the questionnaire. The results are expected in the course of 2019.