Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), a joint venture of four public sector enterprises under the union ministry of power, has lined up investments worth Rs 2,700 crore for the smart meter project in Uttar Pradesh.
He said so far 400,000 smart meters had already been installed in 13 cities, including Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Prayagraj (Allahabad) and Gorakhpur. “We plan to install the remaining smart meters in UP by March 2021.”
Last year, EESL had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with state power utility UP Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL) for the project, which is projected to help the power distribution companies (discoms) save Rs 8,000 crore over 8 years.
Under the MoU, EESL will install four million smart meters in three years and maintain the installations for 5 years at a stretch on BOT (build, operate, transfer) basis.
After these installations, UP discoms have already started witnessing positive results, he claimed. For example, Kanpur Electricity Supply Company (KESCO) saw 8.4% increase in the average revenue per unit (ARPU) during January-July 2019 period over the corresponding 2018 revenues. Similarly, Paschimanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited, a discom in Meerut, witnessed 21% increase in average monthly revenue.
Kumar informed so far, EESL had installed 0.5 million smart meters in India, of which 400,000 meters were installed in UP, making the state emerge as a leader in smart meters installations in the country. He said smart meter project was primarily aimed at regulating power consumption pattern, promote online billing, infusing transparency, reducing line losses etc.
“Now, we have built the capacity to install 100,000 smart meters a month, so that we are able to achieve our target within the stipulated timeframe,” Kumar added.
UP discoms have about 6.7 million power consumers, of which nearly 6 million are domestic consumers, UPPCL nodal officer (smart meters) R K Mishra said.
He said going forward the smart meters could be utilised for allowing net metering, which encompasses a billing mechanism that includes both conventional and solar energy utilisation by consumers. For example, if a power customer has a photovoltaic (PV) system installed on rooftop, it could generate more electricity during daytime than utilised. The smart meter would allow consumer get credit on solar energy utilisation as well.