Harris Poll finds public has little awareness of smart grid or smart meters

Sponsored by

New York City, February 25, 2010 — Utility companies across the U.S. are committing billions of dollars in projects to upgrade the electric grid and install new meters in homes and businesses.

Yet two thirds of Americans have never heard the term “smart grid” (68 percent) and 63 percent have not heard of smart meters.

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll of 2,576 adults surveyed online between January 18 and 25, 2010 by Harris Interactive.

A majority of U.S. adults (57 percent) are aware of how much electricity they are consuming, and an even greater number (67 percent) say they would reduce their usage if they had visibility to it.

A fundamental promise of smart meters is to provide this continuous feedback, and in the future consumers could be charged a cost per kilowatt that varies depending on the cost to produce.

If this type of pricing replaces the current flat rate charged, 75 percent of Americans “want to be able to see and control how much electricity” they are using. There is, however, a core of U.S. adults (22 percent) who do not want the electric company to know how much power they are using each minute.

Using what they have read or heard about smart grid, consumers are unsure about what makes upgrades to the electric system necessary or advantageous.

Two in five (42 percent) Americans were unable to outright agree or disagree with the statement “The electricity system is fine the way it is and smart grid is not necessary.”

When asked about the impact of smart grid on the security, reliability, and increased renewable sources of energy on the electric system, at least one-half of Americans expressed uncertainty. However, those familiar with smart grid are more likely to see positive impacts than those who are unfamiliar.

The general population is also uncertain about what will happen to the cost of electricity once these investments are made, and as such are very unwilling to pay for it. Those familiar with smart grid are more likely to believe that the cost of electricity will increase once it is deployed (51 percent) than those who have not heard of smart grid (39 percent). They are also more willing to pay a 10 percent premium on their electric bill now for the future benefits (22 percent vs. 11 percent).

This Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States January 18 to 25, 2010 among 2,576 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.

 

Sponsored by

CURRENT ARTICLES

Jamaica aims to double renewable energy capacity

09/19/2014 Sun-splashed, wind-swept Jamaica positioned itself Thursday to nearly double the amount of electricity it generates from r...

DTE Energy's Echo Wind Park begins commercial operation

09/19/2014

The wind park will be operated and maintained by a team of seven permanent employees hired by DTE

Covanta to build waste-to-energy power plant in Dublin, Ireland

09/19/2014

Facility construction is expected to take about three years, with commencement of operations targeted for late 2017

ComEd to refund customers $46 million

09/19/2014

Average refunds for residential customers will total about $8 and will appear as a credit on November bills

Indian firm to build hydropower plant in Nepal

09/19/2014 Nepal's government signed an agreement Friday with Indian company GMR to build the Himalayan nation's largest hydroelectri...

El Paso Electric appoints Mary Kipp as new president

09/18/2014 Mary Kipp, senior vice president, general counsel and chief compliance officer, has been appointed as president of El Paso...

U.S. Trade and Development Agency helps modernize Vietnam power grid

09/18/2014 USTDA also finalized an agreement with the Electricity Regulatory Authority of Vietnam for an automated demand response fe...

ON DEMAND WEBCASTS

3D BIM for Substations—Driving Efficiency from Design Through Operation and Maintenance

In this webinar, PESTECH will describe their transition to intelligent substation design and its ...

High Availability Networks. Application of IEC6439-3 Protocols for IEC61850 Process Bus implementation

Networks can now be built for the first time with genuinely uninterrupted data communication betw...

Understanding Moisture Dynamics in Power Transformers

While the need to measure moisture in power transformers has been well documented and is universa...

Regional Market Outlook for the WECC and ERCOT

Looking for an independent market outlook and analysis of the WECC and ERCOT power markets? ...

Streamline Utility Field Inspections to Improve System Reliability &  Customer Satisfaction

Arm your workers with solutions that improve productivity and customer satisfaction. Listen in an...

EL&P BUYER'S GUIDE PRODUCTS

MITEM Corp

Provides CRM solutions for regulated U.S. public utilities. The product, MitemView integrates differently designed systems to share critical data a...

Resources on Demand

Manages resource requests, tracks personnel movements, and supports lodging/logistics during a power restoration event.

Smart Grids

Quanta is contributing to its customers' smart grid initiatives by installing technology on power networks to provide energy management solutions f...

Horizontal Directional Drilling

With 28 small, mid-sized and large drilling rigs, Quanta Pipeline Services is one of the largest horizontal directional contractors in the world fo...

FEATURED ENERGY JOBS

View more Job Listings >>

POWERGRID International

March 2014
Volume 19, Issue 3
1403PG-cover

ELECTRIC LIGHT & POWER

January 2014
cover