CST News Feed

Smart Meters and Grids




Coalition to Stop Smart Meters
PO Box 52061
Beacon Ave. RPO
Sidney, BC V8L 5V9

EMAIL address for Greg Reimer, BC HYDRO:  greg.reimer@bchydro.com

Jul 24

Smart Meter Fires - Interview with Sharon Noble

Citizen's Forum Interviews Sharon Noble Director of Stop Smart Meters BC

Published on 14 May 2015 Sharon Noble, Director, Coalition to Stop Smart Meters, has been investigating whether ITRON's smart meters are causing and contributing to fires. Electrical engineers have identified several design flaws that could lead to fires. For example each meter has a lithium metal battery that explodes when heated or exposed to moisture. Laws have been broken. For example, the meters have not been certified to be safe.

"Meters have failed, melted and burned, but BC Hydro and the government continue to deny these incidents have occurred. No agency has the authority to investigate and demand changes because the government has demanded that the BC Utilities Commission and BC Safety Authority stay out of the smart meter program. If this program is so beneficial and the meters are safe, why is the government preventing investigations by the agencies responsible for our safety?

Coalition website http://www.stopsmartmetersbc.com

Jul 17

Forced Off The Grid For Opposing Smart Meters - Josh Hart

California - Off The Grid News (includes interview with Josh Hart of "stopsmartmeters!"

"Smart meters are controversial among many in the homestead and off-grid communities, but for one California man the controversy turned shocking when the electric company disconnected his power -- for more than a year -- due to his opposition to the devices.

"His name is Josh Hart, and early last year he told the power company the smart meters presented a risk to his health because of a unique medical condition he had. He even had a doctor's note, but it mattered little the day the electric company workers drove to his rural home and forced him completely off grid by disconnecting his electricity.

"The power company gave him an ultimatum: Get a smart meter - or stay in the dark. He responded with his own demand: See me in court.

 "Hart is this week's guest on Off The Grid Radio, as he gives us stunning details of his legal battle with the electric company. Hart tells us:

  • How smart meters can threaten your privacy and safety, and even can catch your house on fire. .
  • Why cities across North America are removing or replacing smart maters by the thousands following deaths from fires. 
  • What he did to survive when he was forced to live off grid, and how his lessons can benefit other off-gridders. 
  • How he took the electric company to court without an attorney - and won. 
"Listen as someone who survived a battle with the power company tells not only what you can do if you oppose smart meters, but how you can fight back!

Jun 26

A Court Told Itron Smart Meters Are a Fire Hazard

PRESS RELEASE from Sharon Noble, Director of the Coalition to Stop Smart Meters BC

June 26. 2015 - For Immediate Release


What did ITRON know and when did they know it? They knew these smart meters were dangerous and they knew from the very beginning.

We, the taxpayers who fund BC Hydro, demand a refund from ITRON for selling a defective, dangerous device.

ITRON's smart meters have design flaws that make them fire hazards. These were sold to many places before they were sold to BC Hydro, so ITRON had to have been aware of problems long before the contract was signed.

Failures and fires have occurred in BC. How many no one knows because no one is tracking. BCUC was told through the Clean Energy Act and Direction 4 it had no authority to interfere in the smart meter program in any way. BC Safety Authority has been told to butt out of the smart meter program. And the Provincial Fire Commissioner doesn't track specific causes of fires. So no one knows, except, perhaps BC Hydro and they're not talking.

But now, through sworn testimony in a legal action in Texas obtained by Sharon Noble, Director of the Coalition to Stop Smart Meters, we learn that there have been many incidents of ITRON Openway smart meters -- the same model used by BC Hydro and Fortis BC -- failing and burning, palettes of them, according to one testimonial.

Now is the time, before more homes are damaged, and more lives put at risk, to say this program is a fiasco. WE WANT THIS PROGRAM ENDED, AND WE WANT OUR MONEY BACK.

Noble says, "Whenever we purchase something that doesn't work the way it is supposed to, we can return it and expect our money back. These smart meters were purported to be safe, just as safe as the old analogs. But they aren't and now we have proof from a completely independent source - a Texas court. Bill Bennett needs to stop this program, recall the smart meters, demand that analogs be put back in place, and send ITRON the bill."'

Certainly ITRON knew long ago that these meters were cheaply made with flaws that could cause the meters to fail catastrophically. They should have warned us - it should not be up to us to have to fight to protect our homes. WE WANT OUR MONEY BACK.


Power of the People is stronger than the People in Power

Jun 25

Fighting Smart Meters Requires More Effective Engagement with Politicians

Smart Grid Awareness and Skyvision Solutions - Raising Public Awareness to Smart Grid, Smart Meter and Radiofrequency Concerns: Privacy, Health, Cybersecurity, Safety, Economics, Societal Impacts, Environmental Impacts, Consumer Choice and Rights

Last year in Victoria, Metchosin's Mayor John Rann spoke, offering sage advice about how to engage politicians. A US group found the video of his speech and is circulating it widely, encouraging use of Mayor Rann's suggestions in the fight against dangerous, intrusive $meters.  

"This article outlines a sometimes overlooked strategy for fighting the forced installation of smart utility meters and which would help reestablish the boundaries of governments and corporations, specifically with regard to the intrusiveness of smart grid technology and its ability to "get inside the home." It is possible that the approach outlined in this article may offer a more effective route to ultimate victory as compared to other options currently be utilized by many concerned consumers and activists.

"Although this article is thought to be present a practical approach for achieving a resolution of consumer concerns on smart meters, it may seem controversial to some. The current strategy employed by many concerned consumers and anti-smart meter activists typically employs demonstrations, protests, and other actions against utility companies and public service commissions. In addition, some court cases move forward, but in this area, the utilities usually have the upper hand due to their deep financial pockets in defending their interests. Somewhat neglected in terms of engagement are the politicians themselves who have the authority to write laws that would protect the people from intrusive and risky technologies. . . .

Jun 21

David Adams: Hazards of smart meters well documented

Nevada: David Adams, Ph.D. lives in Penn Valley.

A thoughtful and well-informed reportage needs to keep in mind that the manufacture and sale of the various devices that use and emit this kind of radiation is a more-than-a-trillion-dollar-a-year business, and that the corporations involved have enormous wealth and power, including an unhealthy revolving-door-staff influence on the federal government organizations, like the FCC, which are supposed to regulate the safety of their products for the public good rather than corporate profit. The proposed exposure limits in the 2012 Bioinitiative Report (designed to protect against the negative biological effects found in 67 key scientific studies) are one million times lower than current FCC limits.  

"The fact is that there are many, many thousands (one estimate is more than 20,000) of peer-reviewed, published scientific studies going back to the 1970s that mostly demonstrate a wide range of neurological and physiological damage from prolonged exposure to the kind of low-frequency radiation generated by smart meters (especially the non-industry-funded studies). These include not only various cancers, but single- and double-strand breaks in cellular DNA, irreversible mitochondrial damage to DNA, other chromosomal aberrations and mutations (e.g., Down syndrome), lowering of male sperm count and motility, greater risk of miscarriages and fetal abnormalities, breakdown of the blood-brain barrier allowing potentially toxic chemicals and proteins to enter the brain, altered brainwave and metabolic activity, racing heart rate (tachycardia), damage to cellular membranes in the body (leading to cell deaths), and causing red blood cells to leak hemoglobin, which can lead to heart disease or kidney stones. . . .

"One final usually unmentioned aspect I could mention is the role of the U.S. military. Going back to the 1970s there are more than 8,300 relevant scientific studies just by the military, which hopes to (and by some accounts already has) weaponize this spectrum of radiation. I could also mention a 2013 letter issued by the Board of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine that referred to an Australian scientific study of 92 case series that "clearly demonstrates adverse health effects in the human population from smart meter emissions." . . .

Jun 17

BC Hydro sues Vancouver landlord over refusing smart meters

CBC News: Tenants want smart meters, but the property manager and landlord are blocking them, says BC Hydro.

" . . . Jackanin disputes that tenants want the smart meters, and told CBC News Wednesday that most have signed a petition opposing them.

 "He said BC Hydro can install the meters anytime, provided they agree to certain conditions, including guaranteeing the safety of devices and covering any loss of revenue.

 "If they feel the smart meter as a fixture is so safe, there should be no problem to accept it," he said.

"But BC Hydro has already rejected Jackanin's terms -- including a request in August 2014 asking for compensation for the loss of rental revenue that would come after smart meters were installed.

 "Smart meters would render rooms adjacent to the meter room unsuitable for habitation due to excessive microwave radiation," said Jackanin in a letter, according to BC Hydro.

"According to the court document, Jackanin has told BC Hydro he was acting as a representative of Puppy Holdings, owned by Myers.

"'Myers' wife has told BC Hydro he is in a nursing home, and "not in a frame of mind to understand the problem."

"BC Hydro is asking for a court injunction to prevent anyone from stopping the smart meter installation, and unspecified damages.

 "A statement of defence has not yet been filed. . . . "

Letter to CBC News
Hydro suing Vancouver Landlord because they can't prove meters are safe

Dear Sir or Madam,

This lawsuit is the height of harassment. All Mr. Jackanin has ever asked for is proof that the smart meters are safe. Many people have been asking for this same proof before agreeing to having one put on their homes, and BC Hydro has harassed, bullied, and lied. People have been threatened with loss of power during the cold winter, despite having young children or being ill. People have been pushed around verbally and physically. Homes and personal property have been damaged. Yet BC Hydro faces no retribution by either the BCUC or the government.

There is serious evidence from independent scientists that RF radiation is harmful. It is a 2b carcinogen like lead, DDT, HIV and many industrial chemicals. Hundreds of independent scientists have performed thousands of peer reviewed studies showing that prolonged exposure can cause various types of health problems ranging from sleep and neurological disorders, to fertility and cardiac problems, even DNA damage and cancer. I would be happy to share a huge library of studies I've collected over the years, or to put you in touch with some of the world renowned scientists who are warning us that RF/microwave radiation should be avoided.

Also there have been fires and many failures with the meters overheating and melting. These are made of combustible plastic where analogs were made of glass and metal. The ITRON meters contain lithium metal batteries, which are being banned by many airlines. They can explode and burn when heated as they will be when sitting in the summer sun, or exposed to moisture like condensation. They have remote disconnect switches which were found to be the cause of fires in places like Saskatchewan and Oregon.

Further the meters are being put into a meter base that was designed and certified to hold an analog (non electrical) meter and not an electrical digital or smart meter. As far as we know these meters have not been certified safe as is required by law. Utility equipment is exempt from CSA certification on the condition that it is certified by a professional electrical engineer licensed by BC. (http://www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/12_100_2004#section21)

When asked for this certification BC Hydro said they don't have one.

In Texas there have been many ITRON Openway smart meters (the same used in BC) that have burned. In a lawsuit testimony described how the meter blades were thinner than the analog which caused a gap which led to arcing and fires. http://www.stopsmartmetersbc.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Reed_Answering_Brief-1.pdf page 8 Design flaws led to "palettes" of burned meters, but customers were to be told it was their meter base that caused the problem.

Our Charter of Rights and Freedoms says that no government or government agency can force us to use something for which there is justifiable reason for concern. There definitely is reason for concern and Mr. Jackanin is right to protect his tenants and the owner's property.

If you would like more information about anything that I've said, please let me know.


Sharon Noble
Director, Coalition to Stop Smart Meters

Jun 17

Fortis uses wired $$meters in Alberta. Why wireless in B.C.? 

Fortis Alberta:

"Do the meters operate using radio-frequency (RF) technology?

"PLC meters are wired to and send meter reads directly through the actual power lines, the same power lines that deliver electricity to your homes and do not use RF technology.

 "FortisAlberta customers have automated meters that measure and record electricity consumption on a daily basis. At the end of each day the automated meters send this information to FortisAlberta through our power lines.

 "This information is used by FortisAlberta to provide Retailers with two actual reads each month, showing consumption for the entire period between the reads.

 "For the majority of customers, FortisAlberta uses an automated metering technology that sends meter reads over the power line. This is called a Power Line Carrier (PLC) system. Additionally, for about 300 sites, where the power line is not capable of being used for meter reading, FortisAlberta uses Point-to-Point meters that utilize a cell phone technology to communicate reads.

 "Automated meters reduce meter reading costs and virtually eliminate the need for estimated meter readings. This technology also significantly reduces need for meter technicians to come on to customer property and reduces our carbon emissions.

 "With automated meters, customers can conveniently track and review their daily electricity usage with "My Power Portal" allowing for informed decisions about everyday energy use and efficiency.

 "My Power Portal is a self-serve tool available to FortisAlberta customers with PLC meters. . . ."

Jun 14

Humour: Hydro's billing practices remain modern mystery

letter to Hydro One Ontario - Jane Bailey

A humorous letter written to Hydro One in Ontario, but it easily could have been written to BC Hydro-- another incompetent, unreasonable monopoly.

 "Dear Hydro One, "Hey -- how're you doing? I know I haven't been in touch lately, but I wanted to let you know I've seen your name in the headlines and had been thinking about you.

"First, let me say that I appreciate the difficulty you've experienced with your new meters and billing process.

"It can't be easy to roll out a new technology to millions of customers, particularly residential ones whose electricity use can apparently fluctuate between using one light bulb, once a day, to running an amusement park in their basements. What a complex, hard-to-manage task that must be.

 "I've tried to gain insight to your billing process a few times over the years, but after fruitless exchanges with some of your employees who explained your billing about as well as my high school math teacher explained calculus (I still can't find X), I gave up.

"Instead, I've resigned myself to belonging to your band of obligatory users, as our house was built in the 1970s, when electricity was cheap and baseboard heating the way to go. . . .

Jun 12

Smart meters vote a slam dunk (South Okanagan, B.C.)

Letter for the Penticton Western News from Malcolm Paterson, PhD (molecular oncologist)

Recently, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen board of directors voted for an "immediate halt to mandatory installation of advanced (wireless) utility meters on all private residences within the jurisdiction of the RDOS; and further, that all such meters recently installed within Electoral Area 'D' be removed immediately, at full cost to FortisBC."

ITRON's OpenWay wireless electricity meters being installed by FortisBC are neither UL nor CSA certified. According to the BC Safety Standards Act, utilities are exempted from having their equipment certified by these agencies on the condition that a registered professional engineer licensed in B.C. tests and certifies, in writing, its safety. Why then is FortisBC unwilling or unable to provide the mandatory fire safety certification required under BC law? Its provision is crucial, given that electrical experts have identified disturbing design flaws in the Itron meter that may help explain numerous smart meter fires in Summerland and other areas of B.C., and in Saskatchewan, Ontario and the U.S.

LSL - Exclusive Interview Dr. Paterson PhD on Smart Meters Health and Safety June 11, 2015

Jun 11

Smart meters are fire hazards. More proof.

AM640 interviews (Collingwood Ontario)

"A Collingwood family woke up this weekend to an explosive sound which turned out to be their smart meter which had become a "ball of fire" attached to the side of their house. "The meter is about three feet from the main gas line into the house. If that wall had gone and then the car parked right beside it would've been very, very bad." Despite thousands of smart meters that were supposed to be removed because their structure was similar to some found in Sask. which were implicated in several fires, Veronica Onyskiw's was not considered a threat. She joins us to discuss what happened that day and what the province is doing about smart meters going forward.

The morning after the explosion, the utility people took the meter, and as they took it they said that it would be sent to people who would inspect it to learn the cause, but she should know that the smart meter did not cause the fire. This is so typical - exactly what happens everywhere.

Loading content ...
Show More Content

One time donation: Click the donate button below and follow the instructions on the screen.

Monthly donation: If you wish to contribute every month, please select the amount from the Donation Options list below and click Subscribe. Your contribution will be sent for you every month for the amount you selected.

Donation Options

Citizens for Safe Technology (CST) is funded and supported solely by those who wish to help us. Thank-you for learning, sharing and helping if you can.

Meetings and events on the issue of wireless technologies in homes and communities throughout North America.

Click the button above to sign our online petition to return to hardwired computers in schools.

Click the button above to sign our online petition against Smart Meters in British Columbia.

Smart Meter Petition (Hard Copy)

Download and print this petition form -- Refuse Smart Meter Installation.

Send completed petitions 15 signatures per page to:
Una St. Clair


e-mail: una@citizensforsafetechnology.org