Today, during a media briefing, Delphine Batho, France’s Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy reaffirmed the French government’s commitment to the Linky project. During the press event, she acknowledged that France will likely launch a tender in mid-2013 and begin installing smart meters by the end of 2014.
The deployment of smart meters is mandatory under the European Directive 2009/72 pertaining to the electricity market. It states that all EU member states must equip 80 percent of their meters with smart meters by 2020 and 100 percent by 2022. 200 million smart meters should be installed in Europe by the end of 2020. Indeed, the management and conservation of energy has become a critical issue that requires an optimization of supply and consumption.
Itron is taking part in the working groups the minister recently put in place to collaborate on the smart meter roll-out. These groups include consumers, businesses and government representatives. In addition, Itron has already invested over $8 million in this project in research and development, and 100,000 Linky smart meters have been designed and manufactured for the pilot phase at the Itron site in Chasseneuil-du-Poitou.
"Itron is fully committed to the Linky project, which will ultimately enable consumers to control their energy costs. The rapid launch of the tender in 2013, will allow us to showcase our expertise and capture market share in France,” said William Hosono, general manager of Electricity in France, Southern Europe and AFMed.