Legal challenge to smart meters

December 29, 2010

OPINION By JUDY VICK

If you haven’t already, you will soon receive a notice from PG&E announcing the installation of a wireless smart meter on your home. The proposed benefits might sound good–a way to get more specific information about our energy use, so we can make more informed choices about how to save energy.

Why then, does The New York Times report that opposition to smart meters is sweeping the nation? And Bloomberg Business Week states, “Duke Energy’s proposal to install 800,000 (such meters) in Indiana was rejected by regulators because the cost of the project would outweigh potential benefits to consumers.”

Here in California, residents of Bakersfield filed a class action suit against PG&E for substantial billing increases after smart meters were installed. California Senator Dean Florez, the majority Democratic leader in the Senate, demanded a halt to smart meter installations. “People think these meters are fraud meters,” said Florez.  “They feel they’re being defrauded. They’re getting no benefit from these things.”

In California alone, 23 Cities (including Morro Bay) and three counties have formally opposed the wireless PG&E smart meters.

Also at the forefront of homeowners’ concerns are alleged public health risks of radio frequency radiation emitted by smart meters. Cindy Sage, co-editor of the Bioinitiative Report, states the World Health Organization (WHO) does not give an assurance of safety for current radio frequency radiation exposure limits set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), rather, the WHO is in the process of deciding if radio frequency is a carcinogen or neurotoxin. WHO is not going to have a formal report until late next year.

Supporters of smart meters compare radio frequency radiation exposure from smart meters (two feet away) to cell phones at the head (which has 3.2 -1.100 times more radiofrequency), laptops (1.1 – 2.2 times more) and microwave ovens (two inches from door 550 times more).

However, opponents say this is a tactic the industry uses to minimize the radiofrequency impact from smart meters—which cannot be turned off by consumers—unlike the other devices. It also assumes there is no harm from cell phones, laptops and microwave ovens—which are used for shorter periods of time. People who report illness from radio frequency exposure avoid all these types of devices. Prudent avoidance of electromagnetic radiation has been adopted in Australia, Sweden and several U.S. states including California, Colorado, Hawaii, New York, Ohio, Texas and Wisconsin.

Opponents also say that smart meters violate one or more FCC conditions for radio frequency exposure compliance—one example is co-locating meters in conjunction with other antennas or transmitters.

Neurological symptoms from exposure to radio frequency include headaches, difficulty falling asleep, sleep disturbances, disorientation and general malaise, cardiac symptoms such as rapid heart rate and irregular heart beat known as arrhythmia.  Continued emission exposure can also compromise the immune system and make one susceptible to disease and illness.

Consumer groups are concerned the wireless smart meter grid will not be secure. In a recent regulatory filing, the Consumer Federation of California attacked the position of investor owned utilities seeking to avoid regulatory liability for abuses of private consumer data taken from smart meters by non-utility third parties.

Opponents also say PG&E admitted smart meters interfere with arc fault interrupters, designed to protect against fires, and household electronics.

On November 18, 2010, the California Public Utilities Commission Division of Ratepayers Advocates called for an investigation into alleged public health hazards with PG&E smart meters. The announcement read, “Unless the public’s concerns can be put to rest, there is a very great risk that PG&E’s smart meter deployment will turn out to be a $2.2 billion mistake ratepayers can ill afford.” The next day, the commission announced its investigation into consumer complaints.

On December 6, Assemblymember Jared Huffman (D – San Rafael) introduced Assembly Bill 37, which requires the commission to allow customers to opt-out of the wireless smart meters and provides for a wired alternative. Huffman also requested the California Council on Science and Technology examine the federal limits on radiation from wireless devices, including smart meters, to determine if they adequately protect the public.

Alternative systems exist, which are wired, making them “cleaner,” more secure and safer. Many businesses, multi-residential units, and cities such as Chattanooga are using them.

If you want the wired option:  Urge San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors (sbaker@co.slo.ca.us, (805) 781-5450), and our elected officials to support Assembly Bill 37, and to halt the installation of wireless smart meters until AB 37 is enacted into law. Write a letter to Huffman and express support for AB 37 (lawrence.cooper@asm.ca.gov.

Ask PG&E to delay installation on your home: 1 (866) 743-0263. Learn more at: emfsafetynetwork.org

Judy Vick is a community activist and former candidate for county supervisor. Judy is a licensed marriage and family therapist, and the patients’ rights advocate for San Luis Obispo County Behavioral Health. Contact her at: venturemind@hotmail.com  and Facebook page: Stop smart meters SLO County.


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willie

I concur that all the radiation, chemicals and drugs we live with are at a safe dosage.

It is the ongoing cumulation or the path of more and more safe dosage (questionable if so much is necessary) that I dislike.

I am 62 years old, my hobby has been in the electronics and engineering field since youth. My exposure to radiation is infrequent so I feel there is minimal affects if any at the cellular level.

I try to curb the excessive use of TV, computers, cell phone with my children and we dump the convenience of a microwave a long time ago.

When they install the smart meter it will be external (outside) and I do not ave a problem with that based on the inverse square law.


willie

And because I dislike the cumulation of low dose “safe” radiation, I am sympathetic to those (my self included) against the “smart” meter and support their continuation to protest it in hopes that these engineers and CEO will think more considerate of the consumers instead of jaming it down their throats and using attractive sell labels like “Smart” meter!

When it is installed I expect to see some FCC label of compliance disclosing frequency and power output!


BeenThereDoneThat

First off I LOVE the credentials of Judy Vick, licensed marriage and family therapist?? Give me a break.


Next lets get to the Bakersfield arguement that the mambe pambe bunch latch on to. Yes it was reported ALL over the news of monthly bills going up. A LOT of people missed the follow up a few months ago when the P.U.C. came out and annouced that the vast majortity of the meter overage was people that had older meters not reading right, (to low) and the people where exposed as using more energy than they realized. They had got a free ride if anything for quite some time. I have seen this both ways. Old meters that stick and don’t read all energy used and some that spin to fast. Happens in old and new technology. It doesn’t take much to get to a bill of $400.00 dollars a month if you use your a.c. for 4 four or more hours each day even when the meter is reading right.


As for the Arc Fault. If there has been problems the Arc Fault doesn’t work in the first place and will NOT reset. Sorry Judy. YOUR WRONG!!! Also if you move the arc fault to lower in the panel away from the meter this solves the problem. Second most manufactures have been fine. My understanding is that they are having the most problems with Square D Arc Faults manufactured between 2003-2008. When changed out to the most recent production run, they have not had a problem. Bet Judy can’t and doesn’t even fully understand what an Arc Fault breaker protects and that only homes build since 2003 even have them, which leaves a VAST majority of homes without them. Lame argurement here on this one.


As for the meter readers. PG&E has said that they have reassigned most of the readers within the company. Now before all the lamo’s start saying what if PG&E doesn’t reassign, well so what if PG&E doesn’t?? They are a company in business to make money!!! If you don’t like go get your own company and compete. This is how captilism works folks. GET OVER IT!


As I have stated before, when the people objecting to this get rid of their cell phones, t.v.s, mircowaves, smoke detectors (yes that’s right they emit low levels of radition), radio and every other little radio frequency and low level radiation dodad they have, then make us an arguement, till then get over yourselfs.


RobertWilliams

1. Credentials don’t make a person. Judy Vick is brilliant.


2. PUC announcing “Vast Majority” in Bakersfield: what about those not in the “vast majority” whose bills went up. Also, the report PUC was quoting from was done by “Control Group”, a company in-bed with PG$E. PG&E is one of their largest clients and the report was a complete set-up. And given that they are now changing out that first generation of meters in Bakersfield is proof that there were valid problems with them.


3. Judy was indicating (and PG&E field reps have confirmed, since they have removed smart meters when it has occurred) that if the Smart Meters trips the Arc Fault, the wireless smart meters can also potentially overload electric in a home and initiate a fire, which has actually occurred.


4. Capitalism involves COMPETITION. Competition is what makes capitalism work so well. Yes, a company can do as they like and if the customers don’t like it, they don’t buy it. That is why companies go out of their way to get customers to WANT what they are selling.


But PG$E is a MONOPOLY. There is NO COMPETITION. Since the monopoly is given to PG&E by the people via the PUC, PG&E is supposed to satisfy the people, include the people in major decisions that affect them, etc, NOT force a product on them as they are doing with these Wireless smart meters.


5. Top scientists in the world have done their own testing and found cell damage and DNA breaks from levles of signal radiation even less than put out by wireless smart meters, so again Judy Vick is looking pretty sharp and well informed.


Beentheredonethat – you certainly have the right to your opinion, but your statements are false, inaccurate and shallow just as your name.


amusselm

“1. Credentials don’t make a person. Judy Vick is brilliant.”

Perhaps, but intelligence doesn’t imply knowledge. I think it’s safe to assume that Judy Vick doesn’t know that much about RF works.


“3. Judy was indicating (and PG&E field reps have confirmed, since they have removed smart meters when it has occurred) that if the Smart Meters trips the Arc Fault, the wireless smart meters can also potentially overload electric in a home and initiate a fire, which has actually occurred.”

[Citation Needed]. “Overload Electric in a home” … How can a meter cause a short somewhere else in the circuit? I don’t see how a smart meter can cause the current limiting functions of a breaker to fail. If it can, smart meters are the least of your concerns. Better hope that you are not too close to a public service repeater or base station or a broadcast radio or TV tower.


“5. Top scientists in the world have done their own testing and found cell damage and DNA breaks from levles of signal radiation even less than put out by wireless smart meters, so again Judy Vick is looking pretty sharp and well informed.”

[Citation Needed]. Something peer-reviewed if possible.


BeenThereDoneThat

Why is Judy Vick brilliant?? Because she says something you agree with? Again what makes here an expert on this subject? Because she disagrees with it? Has sited some things that have happened? How does something happening and siteing the instance imply brilliance?


I see that you disagree with and are scared of this technology. I understand that but comon give me a situation to site the brilliance you site.


BeenThereDoneThat

Also on #3. I have been following Smart Meter tec. for about two years. I have not read one instance of the fires you state. Please tell me where I can find this? Also if the meter trips the arc fault breaker it is now TRIPPED with NO power going though it. So how is it going to start a fire?? Please I would LOVE to hear this.


atasmardi

RobertWilliams – Thank you for the clarity of your response. And you spell well, too, unlike beentheredonethat.


mkaney

Your argument re: capitalism carries no weight considering that power companies are given monopolies. Remove the regulations and then we’ll have a scenario under which your point will be valid.


I am exposed to plenty of radiation, I’m not melodramatic about it, but it occurs to me that it’s a hell of a lot cheaper to send the data over the existing power lines rather than use this wireless option,.


BeenThereDoneThat

My point was and is, is that this is a COMPANY that has the RIGHT to do what it wishes, with those in it’s employ. They do not have to guarantee anyone a job. I get tired of everyone thinking a job is a right that they are entitled to. There is that better???


mkaney

I am a devout believer in the free market. Under the conditions of a free market, I think that a private company or individual has a right to do what they want to do with their business and their property. But as soon as you introduce regulations which allow for monopolies (even if it’s a natural monopoly) then I think they lose the right to do what they wish.


That being said, I am totally with you on being tired of people thinking they are entitled to anything, a job included. I just think that if you chose to manipulate the market by pumping tons of money into regulations, limiting access to markets and creating an environment favorable to your own profits, then it’s a fair compromise that you don’t have the kind of freedom a private company would normally enjoy.


Personally, I’d just as soon see the role of the government severely limited, legal liability take the place of government regulations, and allowing the market/competition sort these things out.


BeenThereDoneThat

mkaney, I like what you said but especially like your last paragraph!! As a Libertarin myself I would LOVE to see less Gov.’t.


Paul Anthony

Seems like a well thought out, well written article by Judy Vick.


sloslo, your post seems sarcastic, ignorant, and designed to distract. Ridiculous. You attack the article without giving any specifics. Your best point to ask us to consider the “scientifically proven health benefit that will result from the reduced air pollution by eliminating the need for PGE meter readers to drive all over town…” Really, that’s the best you have? Just in case you need to have this spelled out for you, meter readers park their vehicle and walk. If you think that’s not good enough, petition PGE to require the use of electric vehicles. Win win.


Judy, what is happening locally? I will gladly support what wiser communities are doing and would like to see these “smart meters” kept out of SLO county.


sloslo

The reference and specifics of my argument for why the radio transmissions are negligible compared to the rest of the radio transmissions you are already exposed to was very well explained by amusselm’s comment below.


Do meter readers park their vehicles at the PG&E central office and walk? No, of course not. They *drive* to the neighborhoods they are reading (which may be far away from their office) read the meters, and then drive to new neighborhoods. A meter reader in a large metropolis racks up a considerable amount of extra miles driven on a daily basis. Not to mention the risk of injury these meter readers are exposed to by aggressive dogs and other hazards that people carelessly leave in their yards.


Your electric vehicle comment is the one thing you mentioned that I agree with. Why not put your energy into encouraging PG&E to switch to 100% electric vehicles, which will really help everyone’s health, rather than fighting smart meters.


Paul Anthony

You’re the one with the problem with everything about driving. Why don’t you put your energy into encouraging PGE to switch to 100% electric vehicles?


I have a problem with small minds and stupidity. What can we do with yours?


It’s always so amazing to see how the messenger is attacked. Only thing left is to attack her gender. My wife will take you to task on that.


Meanwhile, our efforts to stop this nonsense is a very good thing and if you don’t like it, you don’t have to participate. What is your position with PGE by the way?


sloslo

How amusingly ironic that you post a personal attack towards me:

“I have a problem with small minds and stupidity. What can we do with yours?”

and then have the audacity to say:

“It’s always so amazing to see how the messenger is attacked.”


It is even more amazing to see someone attack the messenger and then complain about people attacking the messenger.


If you look at all my posts,you will notice I criticize the opinions and pseudo-science presented as facts by the author (and you), but never attack her (or you) personally. When people are out of arguments, they often go to personal attacks, just like you did.


If you read my posts, driving is just one of my many points, and you have said nothing to refute any of them. I am no fan of PG&E – they certainly have done many bad things, but this fight against smart meters is a huge distraction away from the other actions of PG&E we should really be concerned with.


Citizen

KPRL (Paso Robles) had a woman call in to complain that her bill had gone from $200 to $800 a month after the Smart Meter was installed. When she contacted PG&E, they refused to check or work with her on “energy savings”. Once they get the money, they don’t care about you or your energy efficiency.


danika

They came and installed them in my office complex on a Saturday while we were closed. No way for me to ask them to delay the install. They just did it without notice.


We have one at home and I’ve not seen any billing change thus far.


I am concerned about the job losses the meter readers have suffered over this change. PG&E is not supporting the flailing economy with this decision; they are putting more in their own corp. pockets.


sloslo

There are several ridiculous arguments in this article.


If people are really want to avoid radio wave exposure, they best live in a cave. Radio waves from thousands of other sources that you “can’t turn off” like radio and television stations, police and fire dispatch, your neighbors cellphone and wireless networks, and many more source flow through your body on a daily basis. There is no way to avoid them. Any radio transmissions from smart meters are a mere fraction of the total spectrum that you cannot avoid being exposed to.


Also, if you are that sensitive to radio frequencies, you probably don’t have PG&E electric service in your home either because the EMF emissions from the 120v 60hz AC electrical wiring in your home would be far more of a danger than the occasional transmission of a smart meter.


One must also consider the scientifically proven health benefit that will result from the reduced air pollution by eliminating the need for PG&E meter readers to drive all over town to read meter usage.


Also, the data privacy concern is not unique to smart meters. PG&E can sell your data to people no mater how they read it. And your current meter usage is also not secure from passersby. Anyone walking by your meter can see what your usage is by looking at it right now.


Regarding meter inaccuracy – that can also happen with the old meters. I had a busted meter that never read anything for 6 months, and I have also had a meter reader misread my meter by over 100Kwh twice in the past 2 years. At least an electronic system would have less of a chance of human error, and you can still double check the meter reading just like the old system.


There may be some valid arguments against smart meters, but a lot of them from the above article are BS.


RobertWilliams

SMART FOR UTILITY COMPANY, NOT FOR CUSTOMERS.


1. Many people have headaches, ringing in their ears, difficulty sleeping, difficulty concentrating and nausea and they have no idea the meters are the cause.


If people saw the transmitting antennas and receiving antennas on their roofs, they would recognize the cause for their symptoms, but because utility companies are able to place both antennas within the wireless meter enclosure, it is out of sight, out of mind.


2. There have been thousands of complaints and Utility companies are not reporting them. Also, many people do not know to complain to the utility company because they don’t realize they are living with a wireless transmitting and receiving station attached to their homes and to the home of every person in their neighborhood.


Each Wireless smart meter does not transmit to the utility company. Instead, every meter on every home transmits to, receives from and repeats the signals from the other meters in the community representing millions of signal transmissions to and from homes prior to ever reaching the utility company. They call it a Mesh Network. It saves the Utility Company the cost of paying for the infrastructure to carry the signals through shielded cables that would protect the people from the microwave radiation that the meters emit. It is like sending raw sewage through people’s homes and down the streets of each community to save the cost of sewer pipes.


3. The utility says smart meters can help people understand their energy consumption to help reduce energy use.


That is the utility company’s most widely repeated lie. The information from Wireless smart meters is NOT real-time, so customers have to go on-line and look at bar graphs of PAST usage. Economists have identified that less than 1 person in 100 will even attempt to do such a thing and that no one will save energy or reduce their bills with Wireless smart meters.


Also, hundreds of thousands of utility bills have gone up across the state, and notice that none have gone down. All the “Mistakes” are increases. Millions more are also going up and those people just don’t complain.


The utility company eliminates meter reader jobs and saves a ton of $$$$$ and none is shared with customers.


4. There are significant privacy violations having the utility company able to see how many times a person wakes during the night, when & what and how often a person does various things throughout a day.


This detailed information is far more threatening than any van parked in front of your home. Because the information is wireless, it does not have the security of wired communications and hackers can know what days and what times they can conveniently enter your home.


5. Health.


If there were no problems sending pulsed signal radiation through the brains of children 24 hours per day from these meters, then insurance companies would insure the wireless risks, but INSURANCE COMPANIES WILL NOT INSURE WIRELESS RADIATION EXPOSURE RISK (The type emitted by Wireless Smart Meters).


There are thousands of scientific tests and resulting reports demonstrating the biological damage to cell tissue that is caused by pulsed signal radiation, the type emitting from wireless smart meters. Commercial interests have kept this information suppressed from the public and they initiated the “Tin-hat” expression to discredit people who reported problems from pulsed wireless signal radiation. Suppressing the serious dangers from wireless is a strategy the big Cigarette companies used successfully suppressing the dangers of cigarettes for nearly a century.


Smart Meters are worse than cigarettes because (1) they run 24 hours, (2) no shut-off switch even when people attempt to sleep (3) they are not optional, but forced onto homes (4) there is no relief from exposure even for infants, children and teenagers.


Twenty-four cities and counties in California that have done their own research have taken action to stop the installation of Wireless smart meters.


SCIENTISTS AND REAL PEOPLE REPORTING – DIFFERENT THAN WHAT UTILITY COMPANY TELLS US.


1. Skyrocketing Utility Bills after smart meter installation (3 minutes, 19 seconds)

http://www.bakersfieldnow.com/news/63581287.html?tab=video


2. Insurance Companies Won’t Insure Wireless Device Risks (3 minutes, 13 seconds)

http://eon3emfblog.net/?p=382


3. Radiation Measured From Smart Meter Mounted On A Home (6 minutes, 21 seconds)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRejDxBE6OE


4. Truth about Smart Meters – Dr. Karl Maret, MD, Biomedical Engineer

(Dr. Maret’s presentation begins at 23:40 on the video telecast).

http://www.communitytv.org/programs/online/truth-about-smart-meters


5. Microwave radiation dangers in our home (6 minutes, 20 seconds)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAnrmJ3un1g


6. Wounded by Wireless Smart Meters (14 minutes, 19 seconds)

http://eon3emfblog.net/?p=840


sloslo

“1. Many people have headaches, ringing in their ears, difficulty sleeping, difficulty concentrating and nausea and they have no idea the meters are the cause.”


If the transmissions of the meters were the cause, then they would have these symptoms far worse from their exposure to broadcast radio and television transmissions, cellphone and wireless device signals, and especially the EMF from the 120v 60hz electrical power wiring in their own homes.


“If people saw the transmitting antennas and receiving antennas on their roofs, they would recognize the cause for their symptoms, but because utility companies are able to place both antennas within the wireless meter enclosure, it is out of sight, out of mind.”


If the antennas were visible, I’m sure people would be complaining that they are ugly and ruin the aesthetics of their home.


“Each Wireless smart meter does not transmit to the utility company. Instead, every meter on every home transmits to, receives from and repeats the signals from the other meters in the community representing millions of signal transmissions to and from homes prior to ever reaching the utility company.”


This is actually a feature that allows these meters to use very low transmit power. To transmit all the way to the utility company office, they would need to use much higher power transmissions which would increase the RF exposure you are all so concerned with.


“It is like sending raw sewage through people’s homes and down the streets of each community to save the cost of sewer pipes.”


Ridiculous analogy. If that was the case, then your local tv and radio stations are already sending raw sewage through your house 24/7 at a much higher power than these meters.


“The information from Wireless smart meters is NOT real-time, so customers have to go on-line and look at bar graphs of PAST usage. Economists have identified that less than 1 person in 100 will even attempt to do such a thing and that no one will save energy or reduce their bills with Wireless smart meters.”


The smart meters provide a daily or hourly breakdown of usage, something which is only tallied monthly currently. I *do* track my current usage and by analyzing the past usage graphs on their website, and making corrections to my usage, I was able to reduce my bill by 40%. If only 1% of people use that information, then it is their loss. I appreciating having this data at my fingertips.


“Also, hundreds of thousands of utility bills have gone up across the state, and notice that none have gone down. All the “Mistakes” are increases.”


Well who is going to complain about a *lower* bill?? Naturally the only complaints that we are hearing of are the bills that went up. My old meter broke a few years ago and my power bill went down to $5 for about 6 months. Do you think I complained? Of course not!


“There are significant privacy violations having the utility company able to see how many times a person wakes during the night, when & what and how often a person does various things throughout a day.”


There are so many things in your house that draw current on a occasional and random basis (refrigerator, heater, A/C) etc it would be very hard for them to see how often you wake up at night by looking at your usage data. The van outside your home would have a much better idea of these. Also, anyone can walk by your old meter and see how much you are using at any time. If you are worried about your privacy, consider the data that your internet provider has gathered on you – that’s a far bigger concern.


BeenThereDoneThat

Well written arguement Slolo. I would add about all these people concerned about their privacy (like the Gov.t or anyone else really cares about your boring life) go check a sight called Spokeo.com. If you have been on the net and order anything or filled out any forms, they probably have more info. on you then PG&E will. I like my privacy as much as the next guy but on the same token there is nothing that I give a DAMN about if they (Gov’t, PG&E or other) do find out. So what. Again people you aren’t that important. Get over yourselfs.


danika

Is there a pop quiz later?


amusselm

The amount of RF these things generate is tiny. Less than half a watt. And, no, they do not need to transmit continually. That would be a waste of very valuable spectrum. I probably get more RF exposure from KVEC than I ever would from smart meters. Don’t believe me? I live around 700 Meters away from the KVEC transmit tower. FCC records indicate that KVEC has a daytime transmit power of 1kW and a nighttime transmit power of .5kw ( http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/amq?state=&call=KVEC&arn=&city=&freq=530&fre2=1700&type=0&facid=&class=&list=1&dist=&dlat2=&mlat2=&slat2=&NS=N&dlon2=&mlon2=&slon2=&EW=W&size=9 ) Using the inverse square rule (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverse-square_law), how much power do I receive?


I = P / 4*pi*r^2, where I is the intensity that I receive, P is the power output, and r is the radius. Putting in those values… I = 1000W / 4*pi*700^2 = 0.000162485 W per square meter in the day time, and half that (0.000081243 W/m^2) in the nighttime. Let’s suppose that I am 1 square meter in surface area total. Remember that a W is a Joule per second. So, the during a 12 hour day, I receive 43200 seconds * 0.000162485 W = 7.019 J, or half that (3.501 J) for a 12 hour night. Now, to put that into prospective, that’s enough energy to increase 1 ml of water 2.5 degrees centigrade. Or, in other words not very much.


Now, consider a worse case for a ‘smart meter’. Throughout the day in your home, you are around say, 4 meters (around 12 feet) on average from the meter. Let’s say these things are using .5 W of transmit power. With a proper network infrastructure, you really don’t need that much power to get out. Same rule… I = .5W/4*pi*4^2 = 0.000276451 W/m^2. When it’s transmitting, my exposure would be around twice what I get from KVEC. But, it wouldn’t have to transmit very often. Perhaps no more than 60 seconds in a day. Ham radio operators are able to transmit 1200 bits/sec on similar bands. 1 minute at that speed is 9kB. That’s plenty of data to send your subscriber data, current count, a checksum, GPS time stamp and cryptographic signature. The actual amount of energy received would be minuscule. Using the same calculations I mentioned before, it turns out to be around 0.01658706 J per 24 hour period, assuming the transmitter is only transmitting for 60 seconds a day.


We have had AM radio for the better part of a century. We have had low-powered FM land-mobile transmitters for around 40 years. The RF side of these smart meters uses the same technology in the same frequency bands as the latter. The only difference in terms of RF is the fact that the smart meters use very low transmit power. Can we please stop with the mindless fear-mongering about all things RF?


RobertWilliams

Ammuselm.


1. What is the strength of each signal from an infants brain to the millions of individual cells in his/her body?


2. What level of pulsed signal radiation can the infant tolerate while sleeping without interfering with the signals from his/her brain to the cells which are responsible for growth, development and survival?


3. I prefer to have NO pulsed radiation from any wireless devices going through the brains of my 10 week old infant and 2 year old baby while they sleep. We have no such devices in our home and we successfully purchased a home such that we have no neighbors close enough to result in signals in our home


4. PG&E is trying to force wireless smart meters onto our home. Do you think that we don’t have the right to refuse it and still be provided with electricity?


sloslo

Robert,


Have you considered the EMF and pulsed signal radiation from the 120 volt, 60 hertz electric lines running throughout your house? Did you ever wonder how electricians can locate exactly where the power lines are in your walls just using a simple device? The EMF put out power lines is massive compared to wireless broadcasts. If I was worried about pulsed radiation, this would concern me far more than the smart meter.


If you wish to avoid your huge exposure to EMF from the electrical lines in your home, my suggestion would be to shut off your electrical service and use battery powered devices and candles. This would also prevent PG&E from putting a smart meter in your home.


You are also receiving a high level of radio signal radiation from radio, television, and other broadcast stations, despite your care in avoiding neighbors and their wireless devices. To mitigate the effect of those sources, the best idea is to shield all walls and the ceiling in your home with grounded aluminum foil, which will effectively block these transmissions from running through your house. As an added protectant, you might want to consider a tin foil hat for your infant and yourself.


sloslo

Lest some of you think I’m being factitious about the dangers of EMF, please see the following website: http://emf.mercola.com/sites/emf/emf-dangers.aspx


Computers, clock radios, florescent lights, microwave ovens, hair dryers and the wiring in your home are all much bigger sources of EMF than the transmissions of wireless devices. Anyone who is getting a smart meter hooked up to their house obviously already has electrical wiring in their house, so they are already getting many times the EMF exposure that this wireless device would add.


zaphod

Tin foil hats make it worse.


Tin foil fail


amusselm

To some extent, you are correct. RF burns have long recovery times and may be difficult to detect. You see, RF penetrates more deeply than normal thermal burns or ionizing sunburns. The catch is you need a whole lot of power to do that. Like, sticking your arm into an active microwave oven or being stuck in front of a microwave antenna. The FCC regulations of amateur radio say that we don’t even have to worry about RF exposure until we hit transmit powers near 50 Watts. That’s two orders of magnitude more than any smart meter. That’s probably a conservative number too. In order to acctually cause injury, you might need significantly more power. I regularly use a handhold radio that transmits 5 Watts while touching my skin, and a cell phone that transmits near .2 Watts. I’m not at all worried about RF burns from either.


So, to answer your question, I’d defer to the FCC recomendation on the matter: 4 w/Kg. In short, I wouldn’t put a mobile rig and it’s transmit antenna under the crib, but I wouldn’t be worried about my handhold radio, my cell phone, my wifi or a tiny data transmitter on the side of the house.


pasowino

Amen on the getting over the RF thing. We are bombarded by more radiation from the sun than that meter is going to put out in my life time. I find it so odd how worked up people have gotten over these meters. I hate to tell you folks, there a decent chance that your water meter is already using this same technology to transmit your water usage back to your water provider. If it not, it will be soon.


amusselm

The amount of RF these things generate is tiny. Less than half a watt. And, no, they do not need to transmit continually. That would be a waste of very valuable spectrum. I probably get more RF exposure from KVEC than I ever would from smart meters. Don’t believe me? I live around 700 Meters away from the KVEC transmit tower. FCC records indicate that KVEC has a daytime transmit power of 1kW and a nighttime transmit power of .5kw ( http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/amq?state=&call=KVEC&arn=&city=&freq=530&fre2=1700&type=0&facid=&class=&list=1&dist=&dlat2=&mlat2=&slat2=&NS=N&dlon2=&mlon2=&slon2=&EW=W&size=9 ) Using the inverse square rule (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverse-square_law), how much power do I receive?


I = P / 4*pi*r^2, where I is the intensity that I receive, P is the power output, and r is the radius. Putting in those values… I = 1000W / 4*pi*700^2 = 0.000162485 W per square meter in the day time, and half that (0.000081243 W/m^2) in the nighttime. Let’s suppose that I am 1 square meter in surface area total. Remember that a W is a Joule per second. So, the during a 12 hour day, I receive 43200 seconds * 0.000162485 W = 7.019, or half that ( for a 12 hour night.


RobertWilliams

Why won’t the insurance companies insure health damage from wireless device radiation?


Why did the scientists that were hired by the insurance companies find cell damage from wireless signal radiation, same as other honest independent scientists, when Industry scientists continue to say they can’t find any?


danika

Robert…please show me where in any health insurance contract is specifically states there is no coverage for “health damage from a wireless device radiation”.