Report on Smart Meter Problems

The December 2012 report “Analysis: Smart Meter and Smart Grid Problems – Legislative Proposal” is available to the public. This 173-page report by activist Nina Beety has extensive referenced information about many of the problems and risks of the Smart Meter program, with information from state, national, and international resources. Supplemental documents can be downloaded here.

Originally written for California legislators, this updated report also provides a legislative and regulatory action plan for halting this program, and suggestions for reforming utility regulation so that the public is protected in the future.

Table of Contents

Introduction
What is a Smart Meter?
Smart Grid/Smart Meter problems and issues
– Overview
– Overcharging, accuracy, and the Structure Group report
– Reliability
– Privacy invasion
– Fires and electrical problems
– Health problems Continue reading

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N. Ireland parent attempting to protect his children from Wi-Fi forcibly given psychotic drugs — #freeStephenClarke

International experts are increasingly warning about the impacts of wireless radiation exposure to all of us, especially children.

Stephen Clarke protested Wi-Fi in his children’s school in Northern Ireland. It was a peaceful protest to raise awareness to this issue.

For doing that, he was incarcerated at a psychiatric hospital in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and is being forcibly medicated. He has been held there for over 11 weeks.

This is in complete violation of his civil rights and is a frightening suppression of peaceful protest and free speech by British authorities.

Please contact authorities at the addresses below and demand his release. Please post this to websites and distribute to your contacts, particularly regarding this denial of basic civil rights.

Stephen is being held at

Mater Hospital
45-54 Crumlin Road
Belfast BT14 6AB
Great Britain

Send cards and letters to him there, as well as letters of protest regarding his incarceration and forced medication.

He also has citizenship in Canada.

The Human Rights Commission can be contacted here:

Rhyannon Blythe BL
Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission
Temple Court 39 North Street
Belfast BT1 1NA
Tel: (028) 90243987
Fax: (028) 90247844
Email: rhyannon.blythe@nihrc.org

A Twitter campaign #FreeStephenClarke has been proposed.

Please do anything you can to help Stephen.

For more information and a timeline of events: Continue reading

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Lakeland Electric to Replace 10, 657 Residential Smart Meters in Florida

The Ledger News reported August 26 that Lakeland Electric in Florida will be replacing Smart Meters. These are also Sensus, and have the remote connect/disconnect switch.

Smart Grid Awareness writes about the domino effect and the fire issue in its article August 27.

It is almost impossible to keep track of all of the smart meter fires and related issues. We jump from country to country, from state to state. The latest issue is in Florida where Lakeland Electric soon will begin replacing 10,657 residential smart meters over concerns they might overheat, General Manager Joel Ivy said Tuesday, August 26th.

“Domino Effect of More Smart Meters Being Replaced Due to Fires”

http://smartgridawareness.org/2014/08/27/domino-effect-of-more-smart-meters-being-replaced-due-to-fires/

Those meters cost ratepayers about $2 million, and now their replacements will cost $1.3 million, plus labor costs to install, making this a very expensive proposition.

NVE in Nevada and Alabama Power are just two energy companies using Sensus that are not doing any replacement. Yet.

What about the GE fires, the Landis & Gyr fires, the Itron fires?

And what happens with other fire and electrical hazard issues not related to the remote connect/disconnect switch, such as tripping arc fault circuit interrupters, burning up electrical outlets and appliances, and causing electronics to mysteriously fail?

What happens a year from now when a surge hits and meters explode off walls and start fires? Will the utility companies come up with a new excuse for why there are problems?

When Sensus says these issues are systemic in the industry, just what is it referring to? The excuses about the fires — so-called “external” problems — or the fact that there are fires and electrical problems everywhere Smart Meters are installed?

 

Source:

http://www.theledger.com/article/20140826/NEWS/140829388/1410?Title=Overheating-Concerns-Lakeland-Electric-to-Replace-10-657-Residential-Smart-Meters-

Overheating Concerns: Lakeland Electric to Replace 10,657 Residential Smart Meters

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PG&E’s nuclear reactors should be shut down, says US Nuclear Regulatory Commission expert

Diablo Canyon NPP, near San Luis Obispo, California, should be shut down pending a safety review, says NRC senior federal nuclear expert Michael Peck in an internal report that was finally made public by Friends of the Earth August 25 .

The NRC  has allowed PG&E to continue operating the plant despite known safety questions.

At issue is the recently discovered Shoreline Fault. However, the other three faults, especially the Hosgri Fault, reportedly responsible for a devastating earthquake in Santa Barbara in the 1900’s, are also issues.

This is in addition to “normal” radioactive emissions from Diablo Canyon and other nuclear reactors that are a biological hazard to all life.

Here is a petition by Friends of the Earth to shut down Diablo Canyon:
http://action.foe.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16332

Last year, the Union of Concerned Scientists released a report on Diablo Canyon. They found the NRC was not holding Diablo Canyon to the same earthquake safety standards as other nuclear power plants.

“This is a dangerous double standard,” said David Lochbaum, director of UCS’s Nuclear Safety Project and author of the report. “At other facilities, the NRC enforced its safety regulations and protected Americans from earthquake threats. Today, in the case of Diablo Canyon, the NRC is ignoring its regulations, unfairly exposing millions of Americans to undue risk.”

When similar concerns surfaced at nuclear facilities in California, Maine, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia, the NRC did not allow the plants to continue to operate until the agency determined they met safety regulations…In contrast, the NRC has allowed PG&E to continue to operate Diablo Canyon’s reactors despite this known threat.
http://www.ucsusa.org/news/press_release/diablo-canyon-report-0381.html
NRC Fails to Apply Standard Earthquake Protection Protocols to Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant, Report Finds, November 13, 2013

Peck first raised his concerns in September 2010 when he filed non-concurrence papers and later elevated them to differing professional opinion, the highest level of official dissent within the agency. His report said that pipes and other important plant equipment at the plant may not be able to withstand the maximum shaking that could be generated by the Shoreline fault, which runs 2,000 feet offshore of the plant.

“We find it completely disgraceful that the NRC hid these concerns for all these years,” said Jane Swanson, spokeswoman for the antinuclear group San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace.

Peck recommended that Diablo Canyon be shut down until it can be proved that the plant could withstand a quake along the Shoreline fault, a process that could require an amendment to the plant’s current operating license.
http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2014/08/25/3211883_report-diablo-canyon-closure-nrc.html?rh=1
Report calling for Diablo Canyon’s closure raises concerns locally, August 25, 2014

According to Peck’s filing, PG&E research in 2011 determined that any of three nearby faults – the Shoreline, Los Osos and San Luis Bay – is capable of producing significantly more ground motion during an earthquake than was accounted for in the design of important plant equipment. In the case of San Luis Bay, it is as much as 75 percent more.
http://www.ktvu.com/news/news/ap-exclusive-expert-calls-diablo-canyon-shutdown/ng8Tj/
AP Exclusive: Expert calls for Diablo Canyon shutdown, Aug. 25, 2014

On August 26, Friends of the Earth filed a formal petition with the NRC:

Friends of the Earth — an advocacy group critical of the nuclear power industry — filed a petition with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission asking for a hearing and charging the Diablo Canyon plant is violating its operating license.

… The group argues the reactors located between Los Angeles and San Francisco should remain closed until a rigorous safety review is completed and PG&E amends its federal license.
http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2014/08/26/3213001/group-files-petition-to-idle-california.html#storylink=relast
Group files petition to idle Diablo Canyon nuclear plant, August 26,, 2014

To make a comment to the NRC, here is an editable letter you can send, courtesy of Friends of the Earth. My comment was to shut down Diablo Canyon permanently:

http://action.foe.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16332

 

Sources:

http://www.ktvu.com/news/news/ap-exclusive-expert-calls-diablo-canyon-shutdown/ng8Tj/
AP Exclusive: Expert calls for Diablo Canyon shutdown, Aug. 25, 2014

http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2014/08/25/3211883_report-diablo-canyon-closure-nrc.html?rh=1
Report calling for Diablo Canyon’s closure raises concerns locally, August 25, 2014

http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2014/08/26/3213001/group-files-petition-to-idle-california.html#storylink=relast
Group files petition to idle Diablo Canyon nuclear plant, August 26,, 2014

http://www.ucsusa.org/news/press_release/diablo-canyon-report-0381.html
NRC Fails to Apply Standard Earthquake Protection Protocols to Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant, Report Finds, November 13, 2013

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Florida power company threatens disabled World War II veteran with electricity shutoff

Below is the story of what Florida Power and Light is doing to Irving Friedman.

You can protest this action by FPL and file a complaint with the Florida Public Service Commission at

800-342-3552

The docket number is

#130223

You can also file a civil rights complaint against the Florida Public Service Commission and Florida Power & Light Company with the Florida State Attorney General here:

http://tinyurl.com/plz64vy

Be sure to check the spots for “over 60” and “veteran.”
Include this in the body of the message:

Florida Public Service Commission Docket #130223

Or

you can call the Attorney General at 850-414-3300 (this is a toll call, not toll-free) and ask to file a civil rights complaint.

************************

Irving Friedman is a nearly 89-year-old disabled WWII veteran(service-connected disability). He has three joint replacements – right and left hips and right shoulder. He is a past stroke survivor. He just recently came home from two months in the hospital/rehab after a heart attack, cardiac catheterization, 4-vessel coronary artery by-pass surgery, and having a pacemaker implanted. His wife is both a cancer and a stroke survivor. Obviously, a Smart Meter would be really bad for them. Mr. Friedman requested and was granted an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act [ADA, Title III, Sec. 36.302(a)] of keeping his analog meter on May 18, 2011. Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) *NEVER* denied having granted an accommodation until three years later, now, when it benefits them. Now their story is: “We never granted any accommodation to anyone.”

Mr. Friedman has been a customer for 33 years and has paid for every single kilowatt of electricity he has ever used. He has only refused to pay the illegal fees for accommodation as stated in the ADA [Title III, Sec. 36.301(c)]. The Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) told FPL it was okay to violate the civil rights of the disabled and charge the “opt-out” fees, and that if they’re not paid, to cut off a person’s power. In so doing, they themselves have violated the ADA [Title II, Sec. 35.130 and Sec. 35.134].

FPL claims that “cost-causers” must pay for “non-standard” service. However, they provide *FREE* “non-standard” service to Hispanic people in the form of a duplicate Spanish language FPL Web site, Spanish-speaking customer service people, and all letters, flyers, brochures, etc. in Spanish, even though it is not a disability under federal law to not speak English, and the Florida Constitution states that English is the official language (unlike Canada where everything *HAS* to be bilingual under law). They also provide “non-standard” service *FREE OF CHARGE* in the form of TDDY to deaf customers (an accommodation under the ADA), yet they discriminate against all other disabled customers who *CANNOT* be exposed to RF radiation emitted by Smart Meters because it poisons them, severely exacerbates their pre-existing disability, or interferes with implanted medical devices.

That is *BLATANT* and *ILLEGAL* discrimination!

FPL has now sent threatening letters (another violation of the ADA Title III, Sec. 36.206) to Mr. Friedman, telling him that if he doesn’t pay the “opt-out” fees by September 3rd, they will turn off his power. Both Mr. Friedman and his wife use CPAP for sleep apnea when they sleep. The machines require electricity. Without power to run the machines, they could suffer grave medical consequences or die.

So, the FPSC and FPL have no compunction against threatening, coercing and intimidating the disabled or killing someone. This is how they treat elderly, disabled people. Shame on them!

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Massachusetts: Consumer advocates call for audit of National Grid Smart Meter Pilot Program

Editorial in the newspaper Leominster Champion, 8-22-14:

WORCESTER –The Worcester Zoning Board of Appeals approval for National Grid to erect sound barriers on the north and south walls of the Cook’s Pond substation has intensified demands by consumer advocates for increased oversight and auditing of the controversial smart meter pilot program.

Wireless smart utility meters enable two-way communication between home appliances and the utility company, and have come under fire nationwide for security, safety, privacy, exorbitant cost, greenwashing, and health issues.

The Department of Public Utilities, chaired by Ann Berwick, wife of Gubernatorial candidate Don Berwick, mandated smart meter installation by investor-owned utilities in Massachusetts, despite the fact that the $48M pilot program has not yet begun.  The DPU and the pilot have been criticized for behind-closed-door dealings, lack of environmental and health monitoring, and deleterious impacts on property values also plaguing the New England governor’s plans for the Kinder-Morgan gas pipeline and Northern Pass.

Advocates question whether escalating costs for the pilot will be borne by ratepayers, taxpayers, or investors.  According to documents obtained through a FOIA request, the program’s official start was delayed from January to October 2014.  Cost overruns in other states including Maine have resulted in rate hikes.

Due to sound ordinance violations, a chained-link fence surrounding the Cooks Pond neighborhood substation will be replaced by an industrial 12-inch wide 24-foot high sound wall on the north side, and a 20-foot wall on the south side, each extending over 160-feet to mitigate noise from transformers and HVAC equipment.

Residents question whether the substation in the heart of a residential district should have been targeted for significant expansion in the first place, why it was not engineered properly for compliance with sound ordinances, and why the utility was not fined for the nuisance violation. In response to opposition to a 90-foot microwave tower at the substation, Worcester’s Assessor issued a report stating that due to tree cover, the impact would be minimal on property values, yet removal of significant foliage contributed to the sound ordinance violation, and no longer shields the neighborhood’s view of the substation.

Charges that the program is being implemented to justify rather than to scrutinize smart meters in a demonstration of “decision-based evidence making” by the DPU and National Grid have intensified over time, starting with the choreographed Green2Growth symposium.  Activists have been unable to obtain data concerning the expense associated with auto-enrollment and subsequent de-installation despite filing a FOIA request, and the DPU has mandated auto-enroll state-wide, with opt-out fees planned, even though National Grid promotes the pilot’s free opt out as indicative of its commitment to customer choice. The pilot footprint has extended beyond its approved map, and the program is 5 times larger the Green Communities Act mandate.

Unbudgeted testimony for National Grid by career tobacco scientist-for-hire Peter Valberg did not convince informed environmentalists that the technology protects the health of citizens or the environment, particularly because area residents have reported injury and illness. CEIVA, a firm with Disneyland roots known for “telling stories” has been employed to help launch the home energy management segment of the pilot.

HaltMAsmartmeters and StopSmartMeter MA activists note that the Worcester pilot program reflects the level of integrity for MA residents of the DPU’s mandate to insure safe and reliable delivery of electricity, noting  “Its not looking good for ratepayer’s rights or for the environment, and what happens in Worcester won’t stay in Worcester.”

Source:

http://www.leominsterchamp.com/news/2014-08-22/Opinions_%28and%29_Editorial/Consumer_Advocates_call_for_audit_of_National_Grid.html

Used under Fair Use Rules.

 

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Union cries “Don’t blame us” while ignoring Smart Meter safety issues

Despite outreach and expert information from community advocates, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers – IBEW – ignored all safety issues related to Smart Meters except for one local in Tennessee.

This is in stark contrast to the Electrical Trades Union in Australia which was vehement in their objections, calling for the program to be halted and telling the new media that Smart Meters are a fire hazard, and that they feared people would have to die before federal officials took action.[i]

Local 1288 in Tennessee spoke out at public meetings against the meters and the fire risk. They even went so far as to plan billboards to warn the public.[ii]

The industry association Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers – IEEE — was alarmed over the fires in 2012.[iii] So, what’s wrong with the union?

Now, IBEW is crying that Smart Meter problems are not the installers’ fault. [iv]“Don’t blame the union” doesn’t carry any weight coming from a union almost entirely lacking in any safety concern over Smart Meters and which has generally treated communities so poorly.

Union contractors have bullied and harassed the public, lied about Smart Meters and their utility companies, even physically pushed people around. They installed meters by stealth and trespass, used dangerous techniques such as pulling them off under load, and have not notified residents that power would be disconnected despite the threat of physical harm to residents, including power disconnection to essential medical devices or power tools. They have even vandalized property to do their installation.

These incidents have happened repeatedly.

IBEW in general has been unconcerned about the safety issues to their communities, even sending representatives repeatedly to government meetings, such as the Santa Cruz Board of Supervisors in California, to support Smart Meters. And they have opposed ordinances which would halt Smart Meter installation.

IBEW ignores worker safety. Despite the danger of electrocution from pulling of meters “under load”, that is, with the electricity on, their workers, who are not electricians but just temps with minimal training, have done just that.

And IBEW defends the safety of Smart Meters despite the close range that these contractors work all day long in front of individual Smart Meters and banks of Smart Meters. What non-disclosure clause have workers signed? Have workers received any information on the health consequences for this long-term, high intensity exposure? What medical care is available to them long-term? What health problems are already manifesting?

How many millions of dollars did IBEW receive in union dues for these temporary workers to ignore these issues and act as neighborhood bullies?

IBEW and utility companies work hand in glove to force Smart Meter installation on communities everywhere. Look through campaign contributions to officials, and also discover the large contributions IBEW makes to keep officials compliant.

This is a win-win-win for them, and a triple loss for us.

This triune cooperation dooms public safety, as they sell out for money and power.

—————————————————————————

[i] http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/more-news/smart-meter-death-fears/story-fn7x8me2-1226285463342

 

[ii] http://www.wmctv.com/story/22229806/unions-oppose-mlgws-smart-meter-expansion

http://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2013/jul/10/ibew-plans-smart-meter-billboard-protest/

 

[iii] http://spectrum.ieee.org/energywise/energy/the-smarter-grid/smart-meter-fire-reports

 

[iv] http://www.leaderpost.com/health/Smart+meter+installers+problem+Union/10141322/story.html

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Petition to Massachusetts Attorney General for moratorium and investigation into Smart Meter pilot program

Please sign this petition on behalf of Worcester residents to Attorney General Martha Coakley.

http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/investigate-worcester?source=c.em.mt&r_by=8061333

The Worcester National Grid Smart Meter Pilot program exposes the community to unprecedented risks in violation of local democracy.

This citizen petition calls for an immediate moratorium on the installation and promotion of smart meters by public and private agencies until smart meters are proven safe for public health and the nature environment, the economy, and the security of the community. We, the undersigned, respectfully request that the Office of the Attorney General, as the ratepayer’s advocate, investigate the Worcester National Grid Smart Meter Pilot Program.

http://www.haltmasmartmeters.org

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