Posts Tagged ‘MA smart meters’

Mark Your Calendars

The legislature posts hearings one week in advance, but we’ve received tentative advance notice of these two bills:

 

S.107 An Act relative to disclosure of radiofrequency notifications requires manufacturer warnings be prominently displayed on product packaging of wireless radiation-emitting devices. Sponsored by Senator Julian Cyr. Tentative: Tues. Sept. 26.

 

H.3400 An Act clarifying authority and responsibilities of the department of public utilities will allow a group of ratepayers to intervene in dockets for electricity and gas before the D.P.U., as well as allow elected officials to participate. This bill came about in part due to the way that the DPU handled the gas pipeline dockets, but will assist all ratepayers. We feel that this is one of the most important bills in this legislative session. The bill may be up for its hearing in mid-October. https://malegislature.gov/Bills/190/H3400

 

We are extremely disheartened that the MA Attorney General has endorsed smart meters, suggesting that municipals and aggregators also be approached:

http://170.63.40.34/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=15-120%2fAGO_Initial_Brief.pdf

Please continue your advocacy efforts with the Governor and the Attorney General regarding the DPU’s reliance on tobacco science, human rights concerns, greenwashing, and cost overruns for the Worcester pilot program. We hope this will become an election concern. The Attorney General has been authorized to spend $150,000 for consultants to review the Worcester smart meter pilot program overruns:

http://170.63.40.34/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=17-53%2f1753_Order_9817.pdf

The public comment period has passed but please provide your input directly to  Alexander.Early@state.ma.us and Shannon.Beale@state.ma.us to assist the AG in her investigation.

 

H.2030 and S.2079  The hearing before the Joint Committee on Education for two MA bills pertaining to Wi-Fi in Schools was held on Sept. 5. It is still possible to send written testimony for all bills. For more information, see https://sites.google.com/site/understandingemfs/ma-emf-bills.

 

Videos of citizen testimony for the Wi-Fi bills here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLMAz9ZRXjYmoXSabQE54w0DhZ28y11mEO&disable_polymer=true

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Not good news. Maybe she’s thinking this is a better alternative to WiFi on every single electric pole?

Attorney General Maura Healey recommending full deployment of smart meters.

Full Deployment of AMF Continues to Be the Best Path Forward for the
Commonwealth.
In its Grid Modernization Order (Modernization of the Electric Grid, D.P.U. 12-76-B
(2014)), the Department provided a plan for the Commonwealth to move towards modernizing the Commonwealth’s electric distribution grid to achieve a cleaner, more efficient, reliable and customer-responsive energy future for the Commonwealth. That plan recognized the importance
of making Advanced Metering Functionality (“AMF”) available to all Massachusetts electricity customers. The AGO strongly believes that the path envisioned by the Department’s Grid Modernization Order, including its prioritization of AMF, continues to be the right course to
ensure that the Commonwealth meets its clean energy goals and that all electricity customers in the Commonwealth enjoy the benefits of advances in customer-facing and grid-facing technology.

http://170.63.40.34/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=15-120%2fAGO_Reply_Brief.pdf

The House deadline for co-sponsors to sign on to this session’s smart meter opt out bill, SD344, is next Friday, February 3rd. Senators have more time to sign on, but all legislators are currently deep in the process of deciding which bills to co-sponsor, so now is the time to make contact. As of Thursday, January 26, Representative Diana DiZoglio and Representative David Linsky had officially signed on as co-sponsors. (For those of you who may be reading about the bill for the first time, the new bill, if passed, will assure the right to choose what type of utility meter will be installed and operated on one’s home or place of business, and to do so without incurring any fees. The text of the bill can be found here: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/190/SD344 .)

If you have already contacted your Representative and your Senator, now is the time when a follow up email, or a phone call together with a follow-up email, can make a difference. We have been told that legislative aides print out all email requests for co-sponsorship and gather them into a great pile for their Representative or Senator to review. (My own Representative reportedly has around 6000 bills to review!) An email can be fairly brief. (e.g., Dear Senator/ Representative, I hope you will sign on as a co-sponsor of SD344, the smart meter opt out bill. Wireless utility meters raise concerns about security, privacy, and health which are not being properly addressed. All Massachusetts ratepayers should have the right to choose what type of utility meters they will have and to do so without paying any fees.) If you have more time, you are welcome to send a one-page introduction to the subject, complete with references. But please consider sending something to be printed out and physically placed in front of the legislator. Legislators can send requests to be co-sponsors of the new bill, SD344, through the online system LAWS.

 

Here is the update on the Attorney General’s response, essentially recommending that the program be extended only until April 2017 (4 months) at $700,000 with a cost cap to minimize confusion over multiple rates changes.  ($700,000 still seems like a lot of money to me)

http://web1.env.state.ma.us/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=16-149%2fAGO_Opposition_102716.pdf

PAGE 1; On September 27, 2016, the Department issued a Notice of Filing and Public Hearing and Procedural Conference. On October 20, 2016, the Department held a public hearing and procedural conference. A final procedural schedule has not yet been established for this proceeding. Since the Company’s filing of its Petition, the Attorney General’s Office (“AGO”), has issued one set of discovery questions. Additionally, the Department has received 17 sets of comments from interested parties, all of which oppose the extension of the Pilot due to concerns regarding cost overruns during the initial Pilot term and the health effects of the Pilot.
PAGE 2 According to the Company, if the Pilot and Smart Pricing rates end on December 31, 2016, customers will have to be switched back to standard Basic Service rates, and if the Smart Pricing rates are thereafter extended, customers will be placed back on Smart Pricing. Motion, p. 1. The Company states that multiple rate switches within a short timeframe are likely to cause customer dissatisfaction and confusion. Motion, pp. 1-2. The Department should deny the Motion, as proposed, because the Company has already far exceeded its Pilot budget as approved in D.P.U. 11-129. 
The AGO does not object to extending the Company’s Smart Pricing rates on an interim basis to help minimize customer confusion. 2 However, given that there has been no opportunity to fully review the Company’s proposed Pilot extension, certain safeguards must be put in place to contain Company spending. Specifically, the Department should establish a set end date for the interim extension and a set a cost cap on the additional program costs incurred during the interim extension period. Moreover, to the extent the Department decides to allow interim approval, it should do so only for the Company’s Basic Service Tariff, M.D.P.U. No. 1296.
PAGE 4 In the Company’s latest Pilot cost recovery docket, D.P.U. 16-28, the Company recognized this budget and stated that its current forecast, including operation and maintenance (“O&M”), capital and cost of removal is $60,393,000. Massachusetts Electric Company and Nantucket Electric Company, each d/b/a National Grid, D.P.U. 16-28, Exh. AG-1-13. This amount is $14,593,000, or 31.9% above the Department-approved budget amount. Department approval of an interim extension of the Pilot as proposed, with no cost control measures incorporated, may result in additional cost overruns to be borne by the Company’s ratepayers. The Company has not provided any information, either in its Motion for interim approval or in its Pilot extension proposal generally, regarding its ability to control costs. In light of the fact that the Company has already far exceeded the original Pilot budget, the Company should only be allowed to continue the Pilot on an interim basis if the Department imposes some cost control measures. 
PAGE 5 In order to limit the costs associated with an interim extension of the Pilot, while still allowing sufficient time for a full adjudicatory proceeding in this matter, the AGO proposes that a set end date be established for the Company’s interim extension. The Company is requesting approval of a revised Tariff for Basic Service, M.D.P.U. No. 1296 (replacing M.D.P.U. No. 1250), in this docket in order to continue its Smart Pricing as set forth in Section 8 of its current Tariff for Basic Service.4 Given that the Company’s next Basic Service rates will go into effect on May 1, 2017, April 30, 2017 is a logical end date.5 A four-month extension is more than sufficient ameliorate customer confusion concerns while the issues in D.P.U. 16-149 are fully reviewed and the Department issues its final order.

 

PAGE 6 In order to further control additional cost overruns associated with the Pilot, the AGO strongly urges the Department to place a cost cap on the costs that may be incurred during any interim extension period. The Company’s estimated budget for its two-year Pilot extension, representing the estimated O&M post Pilot expenses, is $2,035,000 per year. Exh. WFJ-2. As stated above, the AGO does not oppose a limited, four-month interim extension of the Pilot, which would represent roughly one third of a year. Given this timeframe for an interim extension, a reasonable cost cap could be calculated by taking the Company’s proposed $2,035,000 annual budget for the Pilot and multiplying that by one third. This would result in an approximate rounded four-month budget of $700,000. As noted above, the Company has already greatly exceeded its Department-approved budget for the original Pilot. In order to prevent further overruns of the Company’s original Pilot budget, the AGO proposes a cost cap on costs incurred during any approved interim Pilot extension of $700,000.
Apparently, National Grid has decided not to pursue demand response in the UK.
(As you know, National Grid is a UK corporation).
Given that the MA roll-out of smart meters is being justified to support demand response as a form of energy efficiency,
it seems that this is a crucial development that warrants investigation before MA ratepayers are saddled with the costs and other additional risks.
Watch the part about smart meters and why its bad to sign the opt out contract for not wanting the utility company to install a smart meter.
Published on Aug 8, 2016

The “Opt-Out” contract IS A SCAM! This video presents detailed info how to more effectively refuse and challenge harmful and illegal programs which attempt to force you to accept dangerous policies such as vaccinations and spying/transmitting utility meters. This video goes into detail to present your legal options and explain the powerful free documents at FreedomTaker.com which are designed to put the authority back in your hands.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIELtYIsbD4

$7,000 is too much for an electric meter
BE HEARD!
 
National Grid’s run-amok Worcester area
WiMax
‘smart’ meter pilot is $29M (65%) over-budget at $7,000 per meter, & does not represent Massachusetts demographics.
The many

egregious ahhem, 
misrepresentations in National Grid’s FEB 2016 ‘Interim Report‘ need to come to light before we all end up with $7,000 ‘smart’ electric meters.
 
The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office will listen to ratepayer concerns on 
June 13th in Worcester (see details below)
—————————
INTERIM REPORT

CLAIM: 98% retention & 72% satisfied but the 4,000 – 6,000 

subjects who quit were conveniently not counted

CLAIM: In a ‘portion of Worcester’  

NOT: Groton, Auburn, etc.

CLAIM: ‘smart’ meters installed April ’14 

NOT: Installed in ’12 & ’13

CLAIM: Worcester Library usage 

Overstated Worcester’s Main Branch usage by 71%

 CLAIM: Not enough lower income subjects available
though half of Worcester meets National Grid’s threshold
CLAIM: 0.2% electricity “saved” on average
CLAIM: $1,250,0000 “saved” –  total (see chart below)

IRRECONCILABLE:

– 0.2% of the average annual MA home’s bill is less than $3

– Less than 11,000 subjects remain in the pilot

– $3 x 11,000 = $33,000

 

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC UTILITIES DOCS

 $29,000,000 (65%) over budget (and counting)

 Sustainability Hub: $700k / 1,400% over budget 

 Cost:  $7,000 per meter and rising

 Vegetation decimated for ‘smart’ networks

 National Grid bought ratepayer private financial

& lifestyle data without their permission


—————————

National Grid and MA Department of Public Utilities rely on 
career tobacco testifier and outdated health data.
v Adverse symptoms ignored or scorned: headaches, sleep 
issues, ear ringing, neurological, etc.

 

 
Questions/Comments/Suggestions: HaltMAsmartMeters@gmail.com
 

Page 11 of Interim Report

Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office Public Listening Session
Monday, June 13, 2016: 6 – 8 pm
Energy & Environment Listening Session
devoted to hearing directly from YOU about issues
important to Greater Worcester & the Commonwealth.

Broad Meadow Brook Center & Sanctuary
414 Massasoit Road, Worcester
Open to the public: RSVP
Questions for the AG:  AGOcommunityEngagement@state.ma.us