Although the US is working hard to change automotive standards to reduce emissions, home efficiency standards are still pretty weak. We are doing well with the adoption of LED and CFL lighting, but it’s grudgingly and so many people use electric heating and stoves from the 70s that the energy saved from lighting is a drop in the bucket. Being aware of how much energy your home is drawing is difficult right now, but there’s no reason it should be — other than the cost of getting smart meters and readers out there. The UK is making that a priority, which I think is a smart move.
They’re aiming to replace all old-school meters by 2020, which is probably about as close as they dare put the date. Since it’s not just a switcheroo with the old one, and requires a little “consumer education,” it means that those lonely souls deep in rural Wales and the like will have to learn how to use these newfangled Frggaulinseggitsensiisuns (that’s Welsh for modern electrical meters). Good idea, and hopefully we and others will follow their example.
Readers of CrunchGear are probably using more energy to power their video cards than to heat their home, so I guess that’s another place we ought to be investigating.