Smart Choices About Smart Meters: Critical Issues to Consider in Deciding Whether to Opt Out

A public service brought to you by the Smart Meter Safety Coalition

Now that the Maine Public Utilities Commission has ruled that it is “unreasonable” for Central Maine Power to force every customer to accept a wireless meter, and that it is “in the public interest” for customers to opt-out, here’s a candid look at the information you won’t find in CMP’s promotional materials.

It’s information you need to decide whether the purported benefits of a smart meter outweigh the documented risks to health, safety, privacy and cybersecurity.

Here’s why people, communities and governments around the world are rejecting smart meters:

Click on image for printable informational flyer.

  • Radiofrequency interference causing malfunctioning of wireless equipment such as Wi-Fi and Netflix
  • Radiofrequency interference causing malfunctioning of medical equipment such as pacemakers and wireless insulin pumps
  • Radiofrequency spikes causing appliances to break
  • Health effects like migraines, nausea, vomiting, muscle spasms, heart palpitations and sleeplessness caused by intense bursts of radiofrequency radiation that has just been classified as a “possible carcinogen” by the World Health Organization — in the same category as lead, engine exhaust and DDT
  • Cybersecurity breaches
  • Excessive billing
  • Interception of personal identity information
  • Electrical fires

Here’s a more in-depth look at the problems associated with wireless smart meters:

RADIOFREQUENCY INTERFERENCE

Smart Meters have caused Wi-Fi, Netflix, security systems, appliances, and other equipment to malfunction and break. Interference with electronic devices (home office printers, fax machines, scanners, computers, television and cable settings, etc.) has been reported after smart meter installation.

Appliances and devices that are electrically connected in the home (plugged into home electrical wiring) can experience radiofrequency bursts of high enough intensity to cause malfunction and/or damage.

CMP has received more than 100 complaints about interference, and has hired a subcontractor to deal with these problems. However, the company has failed to follow the PUC’s order to prominently feature in its opt-out communications the phone number customers can call for help in dealing with these interference problems.

Smart meters interfere with radios

Smart meters interfere with cordless phones, baby monitors, other household devices

MEDICAL DEVICE MALFUNCTIONS

Wireless radiofrequency radiation from smart meters can cause medical devices to stop working. Medical implants such as pacemakers and deep-brain stimulators used to control the shaking of Parkinson’s disease can be turned off by the radiofrequency interference (RFI) caused by the signal. These signals are already reported in published studies to interfere with critical care equipment, ventilators, pain pumps, wireless insulin pumps and other medical devices.

http://www.emrpolicy.org/regulation/united_states/7jan2011_doj_ada_olhoeft_comment.pdf  http://www.youtube.com/user/EMRPolicyInstitute#p/u/13/SymnXTNh8Ms
http://www.youtube.com/user/EMRPolicyInstitute#p/u/14/XrETLgwPljQ

HEALTH EFFECTS

Dizziness, migraines, nausea, vomiting, muscle spasms, insomnia and heart palpitations are some of the symptoms reported around Maine and around the world after smart meter installation. Smart meters transmit throughout the neighborhood in intense bursts, thousands of times during the day and night. Scientists have compared the intensity of each burst to 100 times the radiation from a cell phone.

Prominent Maine doctor links patient’s symptoms to smart meter installation

World-renowned public health physician urges people to keep their analog meters

Transmitting smart meters pose a public health threat

Smart meters causing symptoms worldwide — read studies, symptoms, testimonials and more

The World Health Organization recently classified this type of wireless radiation as a “carcinogenic hazard,” putting it in the same possibly-cancer-causing category as engine exhaust, chloroform and DDT

Unlike cell phones and Wi-Fi, smart meters and the neighborhood collectors are involuntary exposure, and cannot be turned off.

The type of radiation emitted by a smart meter can cause changes in the biology of the body. This radiation promotes degenerative diseases and premature aging even at levels of below FCC limits.

Numerous other risks to human health from radiofrequency/microwave (RF/MW) radiation exposure, particularly to children and people with disabilities, at levels below the current FCC limits are summarized in articles published in the March 2009 issue of Pathophysiology.  

Smart meters send and receive wireless RF/MW signals throughout homes and businesses. These smart meter RF/MW levels are far higher than those already reported to cause health risks. Compliance is not safety, since the existing FCC safety limits are under challenge, and have already been called ‘insufficient to protect public health’ by some federal agencies.

CYBERSECURITY RISKS

Experts find smart meters subject to security breaches, hacking

Top analysts say smart meters represent a “worst-case scenario” in terms of security and cyber attacks

Smart meter software company found guilty of data theft 

Wireless communications are far less secure than wired communications

Concerns about the security of the US electrical grid have received widespread media coverage (Wall Street Journal, April 27, 2009). Smart meters present a new vulnerability to intentional sabotage as well as to inadvertent access to private information, since the network is wireless and it adds direct linkage to home computers and personal data.

The wireless network proposed to enable smart grid and smart meter technology is a full-saturation, full-coverage blanket of RF/MW  radiation into every home and business that can increase the points of entry to malicious software (malware), to electrical service disruption or disconnection, and to terrorist attack on the electrical and communications grid throughout the US (Wired.com, March 4, 2010).

CNN launched a “Cyber Shockwave” program on February 20, 2011, that detailed national concerns over the security of the Internet and of wireless communications, which makes us vulnerable to loss of the electrical grid, Internet and wireless communications across the country. Banking, transportation and the electrical grid had the biggest vulnerabilities.

INCREASED CHARGES

5,200 Houston residents overcharged because of smart meters

PG&E replaces 1,600 defective smart  meters that inflated customers’ electric bills

In addition to overbilling issues, many experts also warn that smart meters could cost consumers more money than they will save. Consumers Digest (Feb. 2011) did an investigative report exposing the fact that in order to fully utilize the smart meter home area network (HAN) that monitors how much electricity is used by different appliances, customers will have to spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars in new appliances, each one outfitted with its own transmitter.

PRIVACY VIOLATIONS

Smart meters can identify personal habits, make burglars smarter

The use of wireless networks to transmit information and data leaves open the potential for misuse of personal data, billing and usage information, and other private information.

Privacy breaches have already been documented (illegal access of 179,000 accounts at Hydro Toronto, for example).

NO ENERGY SAVINGS

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen studied that state’s smart meter pilot program and concluded that there was no energy savings.

“The pilot results showed no beneficial impact on total energy usage,” Jepsen said. “And, the savings that were seen in the pilot were limited to certain types of customers and would be far outweighed by the cost of installing the new meter systems,” he said.  “Also, the existing meters, installed between 1994 and 2005, have a useful life of 20 years and replacing them early would incur additional costs for customers,” Jepsen said.

ELECTRICAL FIRES

Smart meters cause arcing, interfere with Ground Fault Interruptors (GFIs) and have been implicated in fires, especially in homes with older wiring

A California fire department captain saves his home from potential smart meter fire

OPTING OUT 

Now that you know the serious and documented risks, it’s up to you whether to pay the  $12 per month opt-out fee to keep your existing meter (the “electro-mechanical” option listed below). If you haven’t already, you will soon be receiving this opt-out correspondence from CMP, giving you 30 days to decide which type of meter you want.

While we don’t believe that anyone should have to pay to protect their health, safety, security, or privacy — or to avoid exposure to a possible carcinogen within their own home — we also believe that a paid opt-out is better than no opt-out, considering the risks.

You’ll see that CMP lists another option (Option A), which is a wireless meter with the transmitter turned off. It’s $1.50 per month cheaper than keeping your existing meter, and while it doesn’t eliminate all the risks, we see it as a much safer alternative to the standard wireless smart meter.

Thanks for getting informed!

www.smartmetersafety.com

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One Response

  1. The easiest way to understand the mesh network is to use the model of the internet. This is essentially the same idea only in this situation it is forcibly applied to to every home and building. the difference is it is INVOLUNTARY. The Enernet is an all enclosing energy net that assaults every natural frequency on the planet by over riding the frequencies to which we are all attuned, the natural geomagnetic lines of flux.
    For instance the human frequency when awake is 7.85hertz, when asleep we operate at as little as .5 hertz.
    NO contest, Humans, navigational creatures, pollinators, bees, butterflies, bats, birds, all biological creatures lose their way, fail to be able to migrate, sicken and die once being literally electrically induced by electromagnetic frequencies inside a mesh network.
    Induction causes harm and is against the law.
    Why? It causes nerve and muscle depolarization leading to disease and death.
    Think of how many diseases are now at epidemic proportions that involve compromise and degeneration of nerves and muscles.
    This is why a landmark lawsuit is underway in Oregon to outlaw wireless frequencies altogether. This is a weaponized concept, intentionally or otherwise.
    Just because wireless frequencies are invisible and you cannot feel them does not mean they are not causing harm, latency sickness, delayed onset of disease and death.
    All biological creatures, including humans, are a an integral part of one system, the most magnificently subtle, dynamic nuanced vital electrical biological natural frequency grid.
    This is electrical and medical science being ignored. The natural frequency grid connects all biological entities via their frequencies on the entire planet.
    This is what the smart grid destroys.
    Everything.
    Smart meters use more than one frequency.
    Radio frequency is only one of them, operating at 900 megahertz.
    This is harmful enough but nothing compared to 2.5 gigahertz or five gigahertz. The SMPS (switching mode power supply fires off rapid surge pulses of up to 50,000 gigahertz.
    Its sole function is to protect not the residents but the meter from the voltage on the electricity transmission lines.
    The microwave frequencies are another issue. They allows the meter to “talk” to and “listen” to and receive pulsing frequencies from
    a) every other meter on every other structure or home or school or office building for miles around
    b) every single far more powerful collector meters
    c) signal relay aggregators on utility poles
    So the signal must be such that it is sourced from an uninterruptible supply source.
    This microwave frequency is an extreme threat as it is ubiquitous & fills every inch of the entire indoor and outdoor space while it continues to connects many times a minute 24/7 with even the most distant cell phone tower – even if you happen to live in a cellphone tower free area or on an island and the cell tower is countless miles away.
    This requires a frequency many hundreds of times stronger than one used by any cell phone.
    In fact, this requires a weapons grade level of frequency.
    The RF or radio frequency is used to “talk” and to “listen” to the embedded radiation emitting RFID chips in as many as 13 RFID equipped appliances & electronics in your house including the battery operated second and third smart meters on your water and gas supply sources.
    Google Barry Trower. He is the man who designed these frequencies for military use as a weapon of mass destruction. Thus is an illegal use of frequency in any public and/or domestic application.

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