Many people question the wisdom of having a risky “smart grid” being imposed upon them and then ask, “Why? Why would people in authority ignore the tremendous risks associated with this technology?” To fully answer this question, it first helps to gain a better awareness of how the “smart grid” fits into the larger picture of a troublesome transformation that is occurring within our society. Although the signs of this transformation are evident, its careful orchestration is being carried out “under the radar” by people who should properly be characterized as “Technocrats.”
On February 13th, 2015, President Obama convened a summit on cybersecurity and consumer protection at Stanford University to respond to the rise in major data breaches at U.S. companies, including recent attacks on Anthem and Sony.
In the lead-up to the summit, on February 12th, Michael Krasny, Ph.D., hosted an episode of San Francisco’s KQED “Forum,” a news and public affairs program that concentrates on the arts, culture, health, business, and technology. This episode was devoted to examining the cybersecurity and privacy issues to be addressed (or not addressed) at the summit.
Most of the focus in the media has been on smart electric meters and the many risks that these devices pose for customers and their families. Another risk relates to privacy invasions associated with smart water meters. A growing number of utilities are installing these devices.
Utilities and the smart grid industry tout only the hypothetical benefits of smart meters, never seriously discussing the tremendous risks and costs to our society. On the subject of cyber security, they hardly discuss it at all. For example, the industry group, so-called “Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative,” addresses the cyber security issue with basic uninformative “happy talk” as follows:
“The performance of security measures are tested and reviewed regularly to guard against unauthorized access to systems. Moreover, utility companies are working with federal agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Energy, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), to strengthen privacy and security standards to provide even more safeguards for consumer protection.” 
The above propaganda type language reveals nothing of the catastrophic risks involved with the deployment of smart meters and smart grid systems. Although you won’t receive meaningful cyber threat risk-related information from the smart grid industry, it is not hard to find elsewhere. Continue reading
Smart meters have been advertised as a means to “empower” consumers with information that will somehow save customers money despite the fact that the deployment of the meters themselves cost billions and billions of dollars.
Having reached the end of 2014, there is no doubt it has been a devastating year for utility smart meters and smart grid advocates. Whether all utility executives yet realize it or not, smart meters have failed. They have failed miserably to the deliver the promised benefits. We are left with nothing but the increased costs and risks associated with boondoggle projects reminiscent of pork barrel spending bills approved in the middle of the night by a Congress wanting to get home for the Christmas holidays.
Posted in Smart Grid, Smart Meters, and RF Emissions
Tagged Costs, Cyber Threat, Failure, fires, Health Effects, Privacy, Safety Concerns, Smart Grid, Smart Meters
An article was just published in the November/ December 2014 issue of the journal Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, entitled:
“Self-Reporting of Symptom Development from Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields of Wireless Smart Meters in Victoria, Australia: A Case Series,” by Dr. Federica Lamech, MBBS.
No health impact studies were ever performed prior to the deployment of wireless smart meters. This new article showing a correlation between the introduction of smart meters and the onset of adverse health outcomes strengthens the need for independent research on the potential health impacts of this technology on the population.
The vehement and persistent opposition to utility “smart” meters has given rise to programs across the nation where customers are allowed to refuse installation of those meters and typically keep their traditional analog meters. In most cases, a fee is required to be paid by the customer for this “service.” This service is sometimes called an “opt-out” program.
The primary purpose of this article is to highlight how the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) has perpetrated unequal, unfair, and unjust treatment of citizens in the state of Illinois who choose to refuse installation of smart meters.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald has broken many stories on the global surveillance being conducted by the NSA and GCHQ. As one of the first reporters to see Edward Snowden’s files, he faced personal repercussions for his professional work — yet continues to speak publicly about mass surveillance. In this searing talk, viewable below, Greenwald makes the case for why you need to care about privacy, even if you’re “not doing anything you need to hide.”
The presentation by Glenn Greenwald is particularly important to remind us on “why privacy matters” in a world threatened by more and more intrusive monitoring of our activities, whether it be from recording of telephone calls, tracking of Internet activity, surveillance drones, or utility smart meters.
With a career as a strong consumer advocate, Ralph Nader’s views on selected issues can many times bridge the gaps between the major political parties. Such is the case on so-called “smart” meters.
This article highlights a portion of a recent program on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. The program aired on Saturday, September 27, 2014, on KPFK in California. About 15 minutes were devoted to the issue of “smart” meters, focusing primarily on the aspect of invasion of privacy.
What follows are selected quotes from Ralph Nader on the topic of utility smart meters, complete with two (2) audio files. One 4-minute audio focuses primarily on the statements by Ralph Nader himself as a part of the radio program. The second audio provides the entire 15-minute smart meter segment broadcast on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour.
Introduction to the Documentary Film
“When business leads research, can we still trust science?”
For the past ten years worldwide, questioning on the safety of mobile phone antennas has been increasing. Numerous scientific studies have revealed the adverse effects of electro- magnetic waves on health. Yet, most health agencies, industry representatives, and a portion the scientific community claim that current health standards adequately protect the public.
Earlier this year journalist Nancy Meritens and film director Jean Hèches completed their documentary Ondes, Science et Manigances [or Microwaves, Science and Lies], that demonstrates how the telecommunications industry creates doubt about harmful radiofrequency waves through the manipulation of science.
[Editor Note: This blog article consists of a document authored by Richard H. Conrad, Ph.D., intended as a letter addressed to a utility company considering the installation of smart meters.]
NINE REASONS WHY TODAY’S SMART METER SYSTEMS ARE A MISTAKE
by Richard H. Conrad, Ph.D. biochemist
Smart electric meters and smart grid systems track and record details of customers’ energy usage, and transmit the information to utilities wirelessly at microwave frequencies. Authorities are attempting to make smart meters mandatory. They are usually installed without permission and sometimes against the wishes of homeowners. Smart meters fill homes with pulsed microwave radiation 24/7 without consent, and infringe on the privacy, security, safety and health of residents.
The U. S. Department of Interior (DOI) has declared that exposure standards used by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are “out of date and inapplicable today.”
After reading the information provided in this blog article, maybe we can start a campaign to have some personnel transferred from the Department of Interior to the FCC. The people at the DOI seem to have a better grasp on the hazards of radiofrequency (RF) radiation and might be more inclined to take measures to protect humans as well as fauna and flora.
What follows are excerpts from a letter dated February 7, 2014, from the United States Department of the Interior and addressed to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration of the United States Department of Commerce. This letter highlights the Interior Department’s concern that cell tower RF radiation emissions have had negative impacts on the health of migratory birds, their offspring, and other wildlife species.
… The Promise of the Smart Grid vs. the Smart Meter Canard …
As stated by Timothy Schoechle, Ph.D. in a document released in late 2012:
“The smart meter is a canard – story or a hoax based on specious and grandiose claims about energy benefits ostensibly derived from the promise of ‘two-way’ communication with the customer. … These energy benefits have not been delivered, or have been only minimally delivered by the meter networks.”
“The meter has come to symbolize a ‘bait-and-switch’ situation, mainly to the benefit the utility industry and its vendors as well as to politicians and bureaucrats. In their present form, smart meters offer few or no benefits to consumers, but pose significant risks and costs to them and to society.”
On January 28, 2014, Dr. Karl Maret gave a presentation at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, California on the potential biological and adverse health effects from the radiofrequency radiation emitted by “smart meters” and other wireless devices.
Northeast Utilities (NU) operates New England’s largest utility system serving more than 3.6 million electric and natural gas customers in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire.
In a written submittal filed with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities, Northeast Utilities was highly critical of a proposed state plan that would require utilization of “advanced metering” or smart meters within the state of Massachusetts as part of an electrical grid modernization plan. In fact, the comments are quite remarkable in that they appear to reflect reality without undue political spin or bias. Let us hope that other utilities, public utility commissions, and politicians everywhere can soon come to similar unbiased conclusions that are based upon economic realities and reflect consumers’ and societal best interests.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) generally categorizes agents (e.g., substances or radiation) into four (4) categories in terms of cancer causing ability:
- Group 1: Carcinogenic to humans.
- Group 2A: Probably carcinogenic to humans.
- Group 2B: Possibly carcinogenic to humans.
- Group 3: Not classifiable as to carcinogenicity in humans.
This article will demonstrate in a step by step fashion that evidence is mounting for RF radiation being considered definitely carcinogenic. In the paragraphs that follow, information is presented showing how research data has accumulated over the past couple of years showing a progression from Group 2B to Group 2A, and finally to Group 1. In addition, evidence continues to mount regarding other types of adverse biological effects caused by RF radiation emissions, some of which are summarized in the final section of this article.
NAPERVILLE, IL — As a follow-up to another blog posting, “Naperville Smart Meters Keep Track of Household Activities,” a new Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request was made by members of a Naperville household to obtain information related to smart meter readings for their account.
Since 2011 the Naperville Smart Meter Awareness (NSMA) group has been attempting to get injunctive relief from the mandatory installation of digital “smart” electric meters that collect granular energy usage data substantially in excess of that required for customer billing purposes. As of January 2015, the Federal smart meter lawsuit is still active, and the most recent court document filings are focusing on the invasion of privacy aspects of forced smart meter installations.
On January 23, 2013, Kim Bendis, at that time President of the NSMA, was arrested by Naperville police officers for both resisting an arrest dealing with the video and audio recording a police officer in the course of his duties (enforcing smart meter installations) and on a charge of “eavesdropping.” The statute for which the police based this arrest had already been declared unconstitutional by state courts at the time of the arrest. On October 1, 2014, Kim Bendis was acquitted of the charge of resisting arrest by a jury trial.
Kim Bendis is now seeking damages from the City of Naperville and penalties for the officers involved in her 2013 arrest. Continue reading
Attorney Jimmy Gonzalez gave testimony to the Florida Pembroke Pines Commission in October 2012 to petition the City to issue a Resolution raising awareness of the health risks of cell phone radiation.
Based upon the presentation shown below, Pembroke Pines in Florida joined a handful of other cities in adopting a resolution that warns the public about the potential health effects of cell phone radiation and precautionary safety measures that should be taken.
Mr. Gonzalez died in November 2014 at the age of 42. His passionate presentation from October 2012, however, lives on. May it help save lives.
Silver Spring Networks boasts that it provides the communication module that is key to turning utility smart meters into intelligent smart network devices.
SkyVision Solutions noted that in one of Silver Spring Network’s marketing videos the company claims that it has “created the next big thing, the SilverLink Sensor Network.” As a part of this video, the narrator says, “Houston, we have a connection.”
The Maryland Smart Meter Awareness (MSMA) group has published an eye-catching poster intended to highlight the Orwellian nature of how smart meters have been deployed and declared “safe.”
CPS Energy has options for homeowners in San Antonio, Texas who wish to opt out of the new “smart” meter program, but those options don’t apply to businesses or multifamily complexes. This appears to be a clear case of discrimination.
“We have some residents here who have some serious health issues and it came to light that there were a lot of questions about the health issues regarding smart meters,” said townhome manager Nancy Woodard.
In order to prevent CPS Energy from installing smart meters on the three master meters, the townhome management changed the locks, which are CPS Energy’s property.