Sept. 15th, 2011: Public Grills Utility Executives on Smart Meter Radiation at CPUC Workshop

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                             Contact: Joshua Hart, StopSmartMeters.Org

Thursday, Sept. 15th 2011


More Reports of Assaults on Residents by “Smart” Meter Installers in Santa Cruz

San Francisco- Yesterday, as part of an “opt out” judicial proceeding at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) the public had a chance to pose tough questions to a panel of utility and “smart” meter supplier executives, who responded at times by giving false information, vague, tight lipped reassurances, often refusing to answer relevant questions about the power of wireless radiation being emitted by the meters. The judge refused to allow expert medical testimony or public comment on the record or any questions regarding widespread health effects of the pulsing meters.

This morning, Stop Smart Meters! received disturbing reports of an alleged assault by a Wellington Energy Installer on an electrosensitive resident who had demanded the installer halt work installing smart meters on the side of his apartment.   The full account can be read here:

Outside at lunch, a boisterous crowd chanted “Pull the Plug,” demanding that the entire wireless “smart” meter mesh network be scrapped, and insisting that any charges to “opt out” of the health damaging “smart” meter program would be akin to charging disabled people to access a wheelchair ramp.

Judge Yip-Kikugawa, who presided over the workshop- was assisted by several CPUC staffers, who circulated wireless microphones throughout the audience of about 100 people, a slap in the face to electrosensitive people who were already suffering from the pervasive wi-fi and cell phone radiation in the room, forcing several to leave the building.  The judge attempted to rule out questions about “why” the opt out was necessary in the first place, requiring that the discussion focus on “how” various opt out proposals would be structured.  Without addressing the reasons behind the widespread opposition to the smart meter program (largely due to adverse health effects) it quickly became apparent that it would be difficult to identify a solution if the problem was not discussed at the outset.

Judge Yip-Kikugawa threatened to shut down the proceedings twice after participants posed difficult questions about the power of the transmitters.  Stop Smart Meters! Director Joshua Hart asked PG&E and Silver Spring Networks how they were complying with FCC regulations that state that “all persons must be kept at least 20cm from the meters” and that meters “must not be co-located.”  Silver Spring Networks replied that it was up to PG&E to ensure that FCC requirements were being met.   Jim Meadows of PG&E replied with a short statement: “PG&E is complying with all FCC regulations.”   Clearly however, the company is in violation of these requirements, failing to warn residents to keep their distance from the meters and installing more than 100 meters in the same location.

Later in the afternoon, Silver Spring Networks executives  admitted that the SmartMeters are transmitting continuously 24/7.  Even though the meters only upload usage information 6 times per day to PG&E, the meters are continuously ‘chatting’ with each other 24/7 every few seconds in order to authenticate and keep the network synchronized.  From their comments, it appears that potentially 90% of the meter chatter has nothing to do with uploading data to PG&E, it is chatter to keep the network synched up – radiation that has nothing to do with customer energy use.   It now appears likely that much of the radiation that is making people sick is simply to maintain the mesh wireless network itself.

Yesterday, PG&E also confirmed that the individual home SmartMeter data is NOT used on a real-time basis for predicting power generation.  The PG&E substations are what communicate the power needs on a real time basis.  They also confirmed that turning off every wireless SmartMeter transmission would have zero impact on how the smart grid functions on a daily basis.

According to PG&E, the SmartMeter time-of-use data is analyzed later (sometimes months later) to make more accurate and precise power generation predictions, but the real-time nature of this data is not used in anyway by PG&E for operating the “smart” grid.  In fact, the individual SmartMeter data is only uploaded 6 times per day to PG&E, and usually many hours after the power is used.  So according to PG&E, the individual SmartMeters are completely unnecessary for communicating real time data and running the “smart” grid.

This raises the question as to why PG&E is deploying meters which are transmitting every few seconds 24/7.  A SmartMeter which could upload the customers’ time-of-use data one time per month (or be read by a PG&E meter reader employee) would serve the exact same purpose.  PG&E would use this data in the exact same way for their billing and energy producing predictions, so the 24/7 wireless mesh network that is saturating our neighborhoods serves zero purpose for billing or energy conservation.

It was confirmed by the PG&E representative that a SmartMeter system which uploads the customers’ time-of-use data for the entire month could be uploaded just one single time per month, and this would serve the exact same purpose for PG&E as the current 24/7 wireless transmissions which take place every 4 seconds.  It is completely unnecessary and serves no purpose for our neighborhoods to be saturated in wireless radiation 24/7.

It became starkly apparent from the proceeding yesterday that a simple time-of-use NON-wireless meter read by a meter reader once per month would supply PG&E with the exact same data they need to make their calculations.  The wireless aspect of the SmartMeter program seems only designed to eliminate human meter readers.  The wireless saturation by the PG&E mesh network in our homes has zero impact on conserving energy.  The truth is that the public in California are being exposed to wireless radiation from “Smart” Meters because PG&E does not want to pay meter reader employees and technicians to activate and de-activate power at homes and businesses, re-directing these funds to shareholder profits.


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