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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Illinois leaders oppose Smart Meters — ICC mandates Smart Meters by 2022 — ComEd speeds up roll-out

What a disappointment for ComEd and its many supporters. With help from many, it managed to overturn a governor’s veto to get very specific legislation authorizing adequate returns for a multi-billion-dollar grid modernization effort. And then, after the project was already underway, the state’s Commerce Commission stepped in to nullify some of the legislation’s provisions. – Jesse Berst

The legislation was not without the kind of drama all too common in the political realm. The EIMA bill never enjoyed the support of the Governor, the Attorney General, the Chair of the Illinois Commerce Commission or the AARP. Throughout the process, all of them made their opposition known. In fact, the bill became law only after surviving a gubernatorial veto last fall.
http://www.smartgridnews.com/artman/publish/Business_Policy_Regulation/What-a-mess-ComEd-puts-brakes-on-smart-grid-rollout-after-rate-dispute-5175.html/

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, citing an excessive financial burden on consumers, “sweetheart deals” and no guarantees of improved service, knocked down legislation that would have paid for the widespread installation of smart meters and other electric grid improvements.

… He added that the state could ensure continued innovation and investment in the electric grid and create new jobs “without compromising core safeguards for Illinois consumers.” Attorney General Lisa Madigan commented “This bill would have been devastating for consumers.”
http://www.smartgridnews.com/artman/publish/Business_Policy_Regulation/Ouch-Illinois-gover nor-dumps-smart-grid-bill-3995.html

The company’s hold over Springfield is clear: Senate President John Cullerton and Minority Leader Christine Radogno have received a combined $93,000 in campaign contributions from ComEd through October 2011, according to public records.

It’s time to put an end to ComEd’s uncontrollable grid, repeal the smart-grid law and work with the ICC to develop a smart-grid plan that actually works for consumers, not just for ComEd. — Bob Gallo, AARP Illinois state director, Chicago”
www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/letters/chi-120620gallo_briefs,0,6519485.story

Now, If all goes according to their plans, ComEd will complete Smart Meter installation three years earlier than originally planned. In June, the Illinois Commerce Commission approved ComEd’s plan to speed up Smart Meter installations.

“We are pleased that the ICC has approved the accelerated timetable,” said Mike McMahan, vice president of Advanced Metering Infrastructure Implementation, ComEd. “This means that more customers will realize smart meter benefits much sooner than originally expected “
http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20140611006229/en/ComEd-Receives-Approval-Accelerate-Smart-Meter-Installation#.U8H1Dtzn9Qw

Are they trying to stay ahead of the opposition?

ComEd customers can only temporarily delay Smart Meter installation, according to the ICC. It ruled in February that Smart Meters will be mandatory starting in 2022. There will be no exceptions. ”Delaying” that installation will cost a customer $21.53 per month.

 …the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) has ordered ComEd to install new wireless smart meters for all customers as part of the “Energy Infrastructure Modernization Act” over a ten-year period.

As part of a ruling by the ICC issued on February 5, 2014, customers can refuse to have smart meters installed at a cost of $21.53 per month. “If customers make the decision to refuse a [smart] meter now and incur monthly charges associated with this choice, it should be with full knowledge that this refusal is simply deferring the inevitable,” the Illinois Commerce Commission said in its order. Beginning in 2022 the ICC has stated that customers will receive the smart meters regardless of whether they want them or not.
http://smartgridawareness.org/2014/02/07/comed-smart-meter-opt-outs/#more-603 1

 ComEd is providing false information on their website

Our smart meters comply fully with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) health and safety standards and emit RF signals far weaker than the levels permitted by the FCC. There is no evidence to suggest that RF emissions from smart meters pose any specific health risk.

https://www.comed.com/Documents/newsroom/Grid_Mod_Fact_Sheet_RF_2013.pdf

ComEd has had Smart Meter-related fires and overheating meters.

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120912/NEWS11/120919936/comed-customer-who-had-smart-meter-fire-describes-huge-flames

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/breaking/chi-comed-confirms-smart-meters-involved-in-small-fires–20120830,0,5315472.story

And ComEd is using ice cream to woo the public.

http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20140704/auburn-gresham/comeds-ice-cream-truck-is-headed-neighborhood-near-you
Chicago’s Com Ed Gives Out Free Ice Cream to Soften Resistance to “Smart” Meters
http://stopsmartmeters.org/2014/07/18/chicagos-com-ed-gives-out-free-ice-cream-to-soften-resistance-to-smart-meters/

With ample evidence of serious Smart Meter problems, health impacts, and an ineffective and costly program, ComEd pushes forward.

Why?

 

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Cindy Sage Challenges the “Smart” in LADWP’s “Smart” Grid (VIDEO)

Note: Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) is using Itron Smart Meters. The information on Itron emissions is here: http://smartmeterharm.org/2014/07/13/how-many-rf-pulses-per-day-from-a-smart-meter/

From EMF Safety Network, posted on May 13, 2013:

LADWP project manager guarantees “smart” meters are optional!

Last week at a Woodland Hills City Council meeting, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) presented information about their Smart Meter deployment plans, while environmental consultant Cindy Sage, co-editor of the BioInitiative Report, presented information warning of the deployment risks.

Marcelo Di Paolo, manager of the LADWP Smart Grid project said they received a $60 million dollar federal grant and that the research institutes of USC, UCLA and Cal Tech/Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) doubled the project funding for a total of $120 million dollars.  Hmmm… what does a Jet Propulsion Lab have to do with smart meters?

Di Paolo stated this is a demonstration project and would be in three areas around UCLA, USC, and Chatsworth.  LADWP is planning to deploy 52,000 Itron smart meters.  Hmmm, 52,000 meters is a demonstration project?

He also said the meters only transmit 3 times a day! Hmmm….Haven’t we heard that before?  PG&E used to say their meters only transmitted 6 times a day. Then they admitted up to 190,000 times a day, per meter.

Di Paolo also said that the project is “purely a volunteer optional program” and that the community can “pick and actually choose whether or not to participate.”

In stark contrast to Di Paolo’s optimism was Cindy Sage who warned about the evidence for health problems from the  pulsed radiation Smart Meters emit.  She stated,  “Those wireless impacts are biologically very similar to the impacts you would have from a cell tower.”  She wisely urged them to learn from the mistakes the Investor Owned Utilities have made.  She asks, “Is this a smart business model, to provide a device for energy conservation…if there are going to be unintended consequences in terms of health impacts for people?”

Di Paolo said the deployment would start in a couple weeks, but two LADWP customers  said they already had Smart Meters on their home, that they were sick from the exposure and that when they complained, LADWP refused to remove it!

Meanwhile, although the manager claims LADWP sent out letters stating at the bottom of the letter that participation was voluntary, nowhere in the Smart Grid L.A. Letter  does it say the meters are optional. At the end of the meeting Di Paolo guaranteed the meters were optional and provided his direct line for people to call: 213-367-1388.

PastedGraphic-1-9Deploying Smart Meters at a time when multitudes of people worldwide are complaining about the health and safety impacts is beyond super dumb, and reckless endangerment of innocent lives.  Our children are the most vulnerable.  Chronic exposure to pulsed radiation is harming everyone’s health.

Thanks to Ecological Options Network for providing the videos of the event. Here’s Part 2 of the meeting:

http://emfsafetynetwork.org/cindy-sage-challenges-the-smart-in-ladwps-smart-grid/

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“Take Back Your Power 2014″ released; screenings this week

The documentary “Take Back Your Power” about Smart Meters and the Smart Grid was released worldwide on September 5, 2013, winning several film awards. This informative and powerful film by Director Josh del Sol takes the viewer on an investigation into the controversies, with interviews and amazing footage.

Now, an updated version Take Back Your Power 2014 has been released. The trailer is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXDFllquOMw.

At 88 minutes running time, this new version has English, French, and Spanish subtitles, as well as 100+ minutes of bonus material.

Two upcoming showings will be at:

EUGENE, OR – Wed July 23 @ 6:30pm.
Flyer: http://bit.ly/1qqBx73

PAGOSA SPRINGS, CO – Thu July 24 @ 6:30pm.
Flyer: http://bit.ly/1n4TpjU

Director Josh del Sol will be present at both screenings and participating in panel discussions.

The film’s website www.takebackyourpower.net has information on how to host a screening in your community of this important film.

Buy the DVD or rent it online. Show the film for your family, your neighborhood, your community group,  your church, and for the public.

The 2014 launch information and specials are here: http://www.takebackyourpower.net/news/2014/07/20/official-release-2014-edition-major-launch-discounts/

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“No rational basis” for Smart Meters, says Massachusetts utility company

In this startling document submitted to the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities, Northeast Utilities in Massachusetts lays out its objections to the Smart Meter program, including that Smart Meters are not needed to achieve grid modernization or achieve energy savings.

It states: “There is no rational basis for the implementation of AMI.”

AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) meters are Smart Meters.

The document states that

  • Meters do not reduce the number of outages;
  • Metering systems are not the only option for
      • optimizing demand
      • reducing system costs, or
      • reducing customer costs;
  • Metering systems are not necessary
      • to integrate distributed resources,
      • to improve workforce management, or
      • to improve asset management.

It discusses the rising cost to consumers.

In this document, it is very troubling to read that there was a 6 month technical review by DPU but that it was conducted “off the record”.

A few excerpts are below.
Full document is here under docket 12-76.
http://web1.env.state.ma.us/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=12-76%2f12-76-Commen ts-7986.pdf

Letter and formal comments

From: NSTAR Electric Company and Western Massachusetts Electric Company (collectively known as Northeast Utilities)

To: Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU)

There Is No Rational Basis for Department-Mandated Implementation of AMI

An Advance Metering System is not a “basic technology platform” for grid modernization and is not needed to realize “all of the benefits of grid modernization.”

…[T]there is no evidence that this is a good choice for customers.

The Department identified four objectives for grid modernization, all of which can be achieved without the implementation of an advanced metering system.

Therefore, it is not correct that advanced metering functionality is a “basic technology platform” that must be in place before all of the benefits of grid modernization can be fully realized, as the Department suggests. Id. at 12.

Finite capital resources available for grid modernization should be aimed at this integration effort before any additional monies are expended on metering capabilities that provide limited and/or speculative incremental benefits over current metering technology (following many years of investment in those systems).5

Moreover, the growth of distributed generation and current subsidies results in the bypass of the electric distribution system by potential electric customers leaving fewer and fewer customers to pay for it. This creates a pricing crisis in practical terms for both residential and business customers remaining on the system. Huge additional investments to the distribution system will only have the effect of exacerbating the issue for customers.

The decision to implement AMI goes against the best business judgment of the Companies and cannot be rationally cost justified in terms of a net benefit for the overall customer base that will pay for the investment over the long term.

The mandated implementation of AMI is not a prerogative within the Department’s discretion. The specification of particular technologies or technological platforms is an issue within the management judgment of the Companies and which would only be undertaken on the basis of all relevant investigation and analysis.

Where is the public investigation?

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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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52 scientists call on Canadian govt. to protect the public from wireless radiation exposure

On July 9, 2014, 52 international scientists submitted a declaration to Health Canada, urgently calling on government to minimize the public’s exposure to the radiation emitted by wireless devices including cell and cordless phones, Wi-Fi, smart meters and baby monitors.

Currently, RF exposure guidelines in four countries. China, Russia, Italy, and Switzerland, based on biological effects, are 100 times more stringent than Canadian and U.S. guidelines.

Declaration: Scientists call for Protection from Radiofrequency Radiation Exposure

[Note: This includesbut is not limited toradiofrequency radiation-emitting devices, such as cell phones and cordless phones and their base stations, Wi-Fi, broadcast antennas, smart meters and baby monitors.]

We are scientists engaged in the study of electromagnetic fields (EMF) radiofrequency radiation (RFR) health and safety. We have serious concerns regarding Health Canada’s Safety Code 6 Guideline.

Canada’s Safety Code 6 Guideline is fundamentally flawed.

Health Canada’s Safety Code 6 is based on an obsolete account and analysis of RFR research and has disregarded or minimized certain recent studies, such as cancer, DNA damage, protein synthesis, stress response, and detrimental biological and health effects in humans that occur at RFR intensities below the existing Code 6 Guideline.

The World Health Organization classified electromagnetic fields at both extremely low frequency (2001) and radiofrequency (2011) ranges as a “Group 2B, possibly carcinogenic to humans” and included reviews and studies reporting low-intensity biological effects.

Canada’s Safety Code 6 Guideline does not protect people.

Currently, RF exposure guidelines in various countries (China, Russia, Italy, Switzerland), based on biological effects, are 100 times more stringent than the guidelines based on an outdated understanding of RFR that relies primarily on thermal effects that includes Health Canada’s Safety Code 6. Following a recent review of Safety Code 6 (Royal Society of Canada Report entitled, “A Review of Safety Code 6 (2013): Health Canada’s Safety Limits for Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields”), Health Canada has decided not to lower the existing guidelines and arbitrarily to include a maximum exposure that is 1000 times higher than the 6-minute average exposure.

Furthermore, Health Canada does not adhere to the Precautionary Principle used by states when serious risks to the public or the environment exist but lack scientific consensus.

Declaration

Many Canadians and people worldwide share a growing perception of risk due to the proliferation of RF sources encountered in daily life and reports of adverse health effects. Since the start of the Wireless Age in the 1990s, health studies show more people reacting adversely to electromagnetic fields and electromagnetic radiation. Epidemiological studies show links between RF exposure and cancers, neurological disorders, hormonal changes, symptoms of electrical hypersensitivity (EHS) and more. Laboratory studies show increased cancers, abnormal sperm, learning and memory deficits, and heart irregularities.

People who suffer from functional impairment due to RF exposure and those who prefer to live, work and raise their children in a low EMF environment are increasingly unable to find such places. Worker productivity, even the capacity to make a living, is diminishing. Some people are being forced into an isolated, nomadic lifestyle, with few resources to sustain them. The medical community in North America is largely unaware of the biological responses to RF exposure and does not know how to treat those who have become ill. The typical methods to alleviate symptoms and promote healing are not working due, in part, to ubiquitous exposure.

Our urgent call for public health protection.

The public’s health and the health of the environment are threatened by ever-evolving RF emitting technologies, without due consideration for what the potential cumulative impacts on biological systems are likely to be in the future.

We urgently call upon Health Canada . . .

i) to intervene in what we view as an emerging public health crisis;

ii) to establish guidelines based on the best available scientific data including studies on cancer and DNA damage, stress response, cognitive and neurological disorders, impaired reproduction, developmental effects, learning and behavioural problems among children and youth, and the broad range of symptoms classified as EHS; and

iii) To advise Canadians to limit their exposure and especially the exposure of children.

Signed,

Dr. Franz Adlekofer, MD, Pandora Foundation, Germany

Dr. Bahriye Sırav Aral, Gazi University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Biophysics, Turkey

Dr. Fiorella Belpoggi, Director, Cesare Maltoni Cancer Research Center, Ramazzini Institute, Italy

Prof. Dr. Dominique Belpomme, MD, MPH, Prof, Med. Oncol. Paris Univ. Hospital; Dir., European Cancer & Environment Research Inst., France

Dr. Martin Blank, PhD, Columbia University, USA

Prof. Marie-Claire Cammaerts, PhD, Faculty of Sciences, Free University of Brussels, Belgium

Dr. Ayşe G. Canseven, Gazi University, Medical Faculty, Biophysics Department, Turkey

Dr. David Carpenter, MD, Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, USA

Dr. Simona Carrubba, PhD, Daemen College, Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo (Neurology), USA

Dr. Devra Davis, PhD, MPH, President, Environmental Health Trust; Fellow, American College of Epidemiology, USA

Dr. Adilza C. Dode, PhD, MSc, Prof. EMF Pollution Control, Environ. Eng. Dept, Minas Methodist Univ. Ctr. Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Dr. Meric Arda Esmekaya, PhD, Gazi University, Biophysics Department, Turkey

Dr. Arzu Firlarer, MSc, PhD, Senior Researcher & Instructor, Occupational Health and Safety Department, Baskent University, Turkey

Dr. Adamantia F. Fragopoulou, MSc, PhD, Postdoc. Research Assoc., Dept. Cell Biology & Biophysics, Biology Faculty, Univ. of Athens, Greece

Dr. Christos Georgiou, Prof. Biochemistry, Biology Department, University of Patras, Greece

Dr. Livio Giuliani, PhD, Director of Research, Italian Health National Service, Rome-Florenze-Bozen, Italy

Prof. Yury Grigoriev, MD, Chairman, Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection, Russia

Dr. Settimio Grimaldi, PhD, Associate Scientist, National Research Council, Italy

Dr. Claudio Gómez-Perretta, MD, PhD, Hospital Universitario la fe Valencia, Spain

Dr. Lennart Hardell, MD, PhD, University Hospital, Orebro, Sweden

Dr. Magda Havas, PhD, Environmental and Resource Studies, Centre for Health Studies, Trent University, Canada

Dr. Paul Héroux, PhD, Director, Occupational Health Program, McGill University Medical; InvitroPlus Labs., Royal Victoria Hospital, Canada

Dr. Donald Hillman, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Department of Animal Science, Michigan State University, USA

Dr. Martha R. Herbert, PhD, MD, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, USA

Dr. Tsuyoshi Hondou, Tohoku University, Japan

Dr. Olle Johansson, Associate Professor, The Experimental Dermatology Unit, Dept. of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institute, Sweden

Dr. Florian M. Koenig, DrSc, Director of Fl. König Enterprises GmbH, Sferics & Meteorosensitivity Research Inst., Germering, Germany

Dr. Kavindra Kumar Kesari, MBA, PhD; Res. Sci., Dept. Environmental Sciences, Univ. Eastern Finland, Finland: Jaipur Nat. Univ., India

Prof. Girish Kumar, IIT Bombay – microwaves and antennas, India

Dr. Henry Lai, PhD, University of Washington, USA

Dr. Dariusz Leszczynski, PhD, DSc, Editor-in-Chief: Frontiers in Radiation and Health, Switzerland; Prof, Univ. of Helsinki, Finland

Dr. Ying Li, PhD, InVitroPlus Laboratory, Department of Surgery, Royal Victoria Hospital McGill University Medicine, Canada

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Löscher, Head, Dept. Pharmacology & Toxicology, Univ. Veterinary Medicine; Center for Neuroscience, Hannover, Germany

Dr. Lukas H. Margaritis, PhD, Prof. Emeritus, Department of Cell Biology and Biophysics, Biology Faculty, University of Athens, Greece

Dr. Marko Markov, PhD, Research International Buffalo, USA

Dr. Samuel Milham, MD, MPH, USA

Dr. Anthony Miller, MD, University of Toronto, Canada

Dr. Hidetake Miyata, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Tohoku University, Japan

L. Lloyd Morgan, Senior Research Fellow, Environmental Health Trust, USA

Dr. Joel M. Moskowitz, PhD, School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley, USA

Dr. Raymond Richard Neutra, MD, PhD, USA

Dr. Gerd Oberfeld, MD, Speaker Environmental Medicine, Austrian Medical Association; Public Health, Salzburg Government, Austria

Dr. Klaus-Peter Ossenkopp, PhD, Department of Psychology (Neuroscience), University of Western Ontario, Canada

Dr. Elcin Ozgur, PhD, Biophysics Department, Gazi University Faculty of Medicine, Turkey

Dr. Martin Pall, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Biochemistry and Basic Medical Sciences, Washington State University, USA

Dr. Michael A. Persinger, Professor, Behavioural Neuroscience, Biomolecular Sciences & Human Studies, Laurentian University, Canada

Dr. Jerry L. Phillips, PhD, Center for Excellence in Science, Prof, Dept. Chem. & Biochem., University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, USA

Dr Timur Saliev, MD, PhD, Life Sciences, Nazarbayev Univ., Kazakhstan; Institute Medical Science/Technology, University of Dundee, UK

Dr. Alvaro Augusto de Salles, PhD, Professor, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil

Prof. Dr. Nesrin Seyhan, Medical Faculty, Gazi University; Founding Chair, Biophysics Dept, WHO EMF Advisory Committee, Turkey

Dr. Wenjun Sun, PhD, Professor, Bioelectromagnetics Key Laboratory, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, China

Dr. Lebrecht von Klitzing, PhD, Head of Inst., Environ. Physics; Former Head, Clinical Research, Medical Univ. Luebeck, Germany

Dr. Stelios A. Zinelis, MD, Hellenic Cancer Society, Greece

Date of Issuance: July 9, 2014

http://www.c4st.org/images/documents/hc-resolutions/scientific-declaration-to-health-canada-english.pdf

Press release from Dr. Joel Moskowitz:
http://www.prlog.org/12346518-scientists-call-on-government-to-protect-public-from-wireles s-radiation-exposure.html

In addition, twenty Canadian physicians signed a statement July 9 calling on Health Canada to raise awareness about microwave radiation impacts and minimize exposure in schools and other places where children are commonly exposed http://www.c4st.org/images/documents/hc-resolutions/medical-doctors-submission-to-health-canada-english.pdf

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How does Smart Meter radiation compare to a cell phone? (VIDEO)

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