U.K. to Start $1.5 Billion Plan Installing Smart Meters in 2016

  • Electricity and natural gas meters affected by program
  • European Investment Bank invests 360 million euros in plan

The U.K. will install more than 7 million smart meters for electricity and natural gas under a 1 billion-pound program ($1.5 billion) beginning next year.

It will be funded by the European Investment Bank, which will invest 360 million euros ($380 million), the Luxembourg-based development bank said Thursday in an e-mailed statement.

Six commercial banks are also backing the program. They include Barclays Plc, Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank SA, HSBC Holdings Plc, Banco Santander SA, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd. Also investing is Infracapital, a London-based infrastructure fund.

“Smart meters make it easier for households and businesses to save energy and this huge roll-out will help to significantly cut carbon emissions,” said Jonathan Taylor, vice president of the European Investment Bank.

The announcement comes during the United Nations climate summit in Paris, where world leaders and their ministers are working on a global deal that would cut greenhouse gas pollution. The U.K. government is aiming to install a smart meter in every residence by 2020, which would total over 53 million.

The program will be managed by Calvin Capital Ltd., a U.K.-based meter supplier.

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