Archive for March, 2015

Germany’s Alex Lerchl Does a U-Turn

The RF–cancer story took a remarkable turn a few days ago. A new animal study challenged many of the assumptions which lie at the heart of claims that RF radiation —whether from cell phones, cell towers or Wi-Fi— are safe.
   The new study, from Germany, a replication of an earlier experiment, also from Germany, found that weak cell phone signals can promote the growth of tumors in mice. It used radiation levels that do not cause heating and are well below current safety standards. Complicating matters even further, lower doses were often found to be more effective tumor promoters than higher levels; in effect, turning the conventional concept of a linear dose-response on its head.

From the UK:

Don’t worry, consumers are footing the £11bn bill

9 Mar 2015 at 10:31, Kat Hall The government’s hated smart meter programme – which will slap consumers with a bill of £10.9bn – is in danger of becoming a “costly failure”, a government report has said. The report by the Energy and Climate Change Committee said it does “not believe” plans to install 53 million devices in homes and businesses by 2020 will be achieved. “Without a significant and immediate change to the government’s present approach, which aims to install smart meters in 100 per cent of UK homes and businesses, the programme runs the risk of falling far short of expectations. At worst, it could prove to be a costly failure,” said Tim Yeo MP, chair of the committee. The report raised issues about technical, logistical and public communication problems which have resulted in delays to the programme.

Sheffield should follow their lead:

The Sterling Heights City Council on March 3 voted unanimously to adopt a resolution requesting assistance from State Rep. Henry Yanez, in procuring a legal opinion from Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette on questions relating to the authority of a Michigan home rule city to regulate smart meters.

The City Council adopted a moratorium in 2013 that opposed the installation of smart meters in Sterling Heights until such time that an opt-out program is available for residents who do not wish to have one installed on their residence. “This moratorium, as well as others adopted in many other Michigan municipalities, prompted the Michigan Public Service Commission to issue an order directing the utilities to provide information regarding their plans for smart meter deployment, including whether an opt-out program would be offered,” Vanderpool said.

“The MPSC approved DTE’s opt-out program, which provided for installation of a non-transmitting smart meter, and payment of a one-time installation fee of $67.20 and a monthly charge of $9.80 for manual meter reading,” Vanderpool said. However, as concerns about the cost of the opt-out program continued to grow, city officials responded by sending letters to State Sen. Tory Rocca, and State Reps. Jeff Farrington and Yanez urging their support of pending legislation that would afford opt-out participants the option of keeping the existing electromechanical meter installed on their residences.
In part, the resolutions seeks answers regarding the following questions and concerns:
* Whether a Michigan home rule city has the authority to prohibit the installation of smart meters on residences;
* Whether a Michigan home rule city has the authority to regulate the installation of smart meters to protect residents who prefer to retain their electromechanical meter as an alternative to the non-transmitting smart meter available under the utility’s opt-out program;
* Whether a Michigan home rule city has the authority to prohibit the imposition of a fee for those customers who elect to participate in the smart meter opt-out program.

While the town of Sheffield didn’t find our moratorium By-law to be appropriate as a zoning regulation and therefore the vote didn’t pass, we could have reapplied as an ordinance. But, we decided to spend our time in outreach to educate folks about the controversy surrounding this issue. That way for those who care about the implications of the smart meter they can stay up to date.

This is our first post in that vein:

Hundreds of residents crammed Kingston City Hall on Wednesday Feb/4th/15 night, to criticize the introduction of “smart” electric meters to New York’s energy grid. Their remarks were part of a hearing process conducted by the New York Public Service Commission. Officials said the Kingston meeting turnout and duration exceeded recent hearings held, in both, Buffalo and New York City. The Public Service Commission’s panel listened to four hours of testimony. Opponents claim that the new digital utility meters produce electromagnetic pollution, which sicken residents.

According to The World Health Organization the microwaves they emit when transmitting information is carcinogenic. It is classified as a class 2b carcinogenic toxin.