To create lasting change, we must move our most passionate stakeholders. Generation Z and millennial consumers are not just amongst the demographic that’s driving India’s digital transformation the fastest. It is also deeply environmentally aware, and has consistently demonstrated a profound interest in sustainable products and solutions. For those in policy, innovation and commercial activities therefore, connecting with Millennials and Gen Z (and soon, Gen Alpha) becomes a key requirement for building an ecosystem of progress and growth. However, this is also a generation with a unique set of habits and motivations – something that isn’t always easy to decode for policymakers, leaders and business owners.

Numerous surveys and studies have consistently shown that millennials are deeply concerned about environmental issues and climate change. For instance, a Pew Research Center study revealed that 75 percent of millennials perceive global climatic disruption a major threat, compared to 56 percent of Baby Boomers. A Cone Communications survey also discovered that a remarkable 87 percent of millennials are willing to make personal sacrifices to address environmental issues.

There are other signals too. In the recently published ‘Deloitte Global 2023 Gen Z and Millennial Survey’ – a pan national study that sheds important light on the attitudes and behaviors of younger generations regarding work and life – a substantial 79 percent of India’s Gen Z and 81 percent of the country’s millennials expressed ‘deep concern’ for the climate. Interestingly, India’s Gen Z and millennials harbored higher levels of concern for the environment than their global counterparts.

This eco consciousness finds its way into their consumption patterns as well, with a Nielsen study revealing that 73 percent of millennials are willing to pay more for sustainable products, compared to 66 percent of the general population.

This makes smart meters – tech devices that help us control and manage anything from electricity to water to lighting (and more) in an accurate and carbon neutral way – much more than just an instrument of higher productivity for the economy. For stakeholders of the world’s new living habitats – such as those involved in city planning, real estate construction, engineering, architecture and design – the smart machines are also a practical bridge to connecting with their next consumer.

By aligning with the values of ‘Gen Next’ – a tech savvy generation that not only prioritizes ‘eco first’ ideas but also cherishes innovative and adaptable technologies – smart meters are fast positioning themselves as harbingers of transformation across India’s social, cultural and economic fabric.

By propelling the adoption of smart meters and acting as evangelists of tech fueled evolution, India’s millennials and Gen-Z are reshaping the future of energy consumption, management, innovation, planning and investment.

Smart metering solutions provide instant access to energy data, empowering consumers to make informed choices and reduce wastage. Be it students living in PG accommodations who want more simplified and transparent billing or young working couples who want greater control and flexibility over their monthly electricity budgets and usage, the advantages of prepaid smart metering can be a true heaven-sent. Not surprisingly, young consumers are increasingly turning to these ingenious gadgets as a means to honoring what they believe is their ethical responsibility towards the Earth.  

They are not the only beneficiaries, though. DISCOM and Utility companies, real estate players and society RWAs stand to benefit significantly too, since smart meters can identify grid issues, reduce downtime, enable preventive maintenance, enhance customer experience and reduce losses and costs at every step.

India’s sustainable investing scenery is undergoing tangible transformation, with the lion’s share being driven by millennials and High Net Worth Individuals (HNIs). Favorable governmental support and corporate initiatives are fanning the flames of what is now an unstoppable, irreversible revolution. In a changing financial ecosystem, forward-thinking investors recognize the importance of astute diversification and value-based connections. This generational shift in investment choices is indicative of a broader trend where eco-friendliness is becoming a key piece of India’s financial future jigsaw.

India’s smart meter market is rapidly expanding, driven by initiatives like the Smart Meter National Programme. The country is investing not just in smarter energy infrastructure and systems but indeed in a bold new mindset, as it braces to make groundbreaking investments in overhauling its energy landscape – exemplified by recent financial incentives for power sector reform. As we peer into the days ahead, smart metering seems set to usher a more performative and sustainable tomorrow – one that benefits users, providers and nature equally. And a ‘green generation’ sits squarely at the centre of this change.

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