Intelligent electricity meters: Bundestag launches smart meters

With the votes of the coalition and the CDU/CSU, and against the votes of the left and the AfD, the Bundestag passed the draft law “to restart the digitization of the energy transition”. The law aims to accelerate the installation of “intelligent electricity meters” – also known as smart meters – in buildings. The law has also already been submitted to the Federal Council, which is expected to deal with it on May 12, 2023.

Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck personally campaigned for the law in February in the Bundestag. The intelligent systems should help to use energy efficiently and cost-effectively and to relieve the power grid. They are therefore an important component of the energy transition.

This was also emphasized by speakers from the coalition during the debate in the Bundestag today. Thomas Jarzombek from the CDU said his parliamentary group agreed with the bill, although it was too complicated and unambitious. Timon Gremmels from the SPD explained that smart meters make it possible to set up virtual meters and thus make rental electricity more attractive, for example through photovoltaics.

So far, however, the systems for measuring and controlling energy consumption have not spread at the necessary speed, according to the draft law (PDF). Among other things, this is due to complex administrative procedures when releasing the devices.

The aim of the law is to have the digital infrastructure for a largely climate-neutral energy system in place by 2030. Among other things, the fact that certification from three independent manufacturers is no longer required for each development stage should contribute to this. An “agile rollout” should also be made possible. This means that devices that have already been certified can already be installed, and necessary functions can be installed later via updates.

Smart meters should become attractive for consumers by being able to book dynamic electricity tariffs. This would allow them to shift their electricity consumption to cheaper times when a lot of electricity is generated from renewable energies. Value is also placed on data security, the draft law emphasizes. The Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) should concentrate more on smart meter gateways in its standardization.


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