Friday, 13 February 2009

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Google has developed an application to help consumers better manage their home energy use. The company says that studies show that access to energy information results in savings of 5-15% in electricity usage. If just half the US population cut bills by 10% it would be equivalent to taking eight million cars off the roads.

The company has been lobbying for a 'smart grid' that provides both utilities and consumers with real-time energy use information, which of course means smart meters. Google goes further in pressing for open standards and protocols to drive the market. But the company is also building the tools. It has developed a tool called PowerMeter, which will show consumers their home energy information almost in real time on their computer. It's currently under test, but Google is building partnerships with utilities and independent device manufacturers to roll it out in pilot programmes.

As Google rightly points out, there is no easy solution to providing consumers with detailed energy information - it will take the combined efforts of governments, utilities, device manufacturers and software developers. But if households had the sort of real-time power usage (and cost) information shown in the chart then it will surely have a direct impact on usage.

I certainly want it.

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here for more details. The offer ends on Friday February 13th, so don't be unlucky ...

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