More Smart Meter Woes: Another U.S. City Trying to Fix Its Smart Grid System. “We’ve been messing with this for nine years.”

By B.N. Frank

American utility companies received BILLIONS in federal stimulus to install “Smart” Grids and “Meters” even though they are unnecessary and have been plagued with significant problems.  Unfortunately, now 57% of Americans have “Smart” Meters – electric, gas, and water – and there are plans to install more.  Their installation has been associated with fires, explosions, malfunctioning and broken appliances, measurement errors, catastrophic cybersecurity risks (see 1, 2), AND MORE.  In fact, before Trump left office, additional federal legislation was passed to address their vulnerability.

Research has determined that “Smart” Meters DO NOT SAVE meaningful amounts of energy.  Many legislators have taken action against “Smart” Meters for various reasons including cost (see 1, 2).  This includes current Kentucky Governor, Andy Beshear who stopped deployment while he was Attorney General.

Another American city’s “Smart” Grid / “Smart” Meters tale of woe was recently reported by The Fullerton Sun:

Fulton Smart Grid system fix continues

The City of Fulton is making progress toward fixing its troubled Smart Grid system, utilities superintendent Darrell Dunlap said.

Dunlap gave an update on the process during Monday’s Public Utility Board meeting.

“We’ve changed our strategy with the Smart Grid,” Dunlap said. “We’re doing one route at a time.”

In the early 2010s, with the help of a U.S. Department of Energy grant, the city installed smart meters for every residential and commercial electric customer within city limits. The cost to install the 5,500 or so meters totaled around $3 million, with the federal government paying for half. But the city has shelled out at least half as much again since then making the system work.

The Smart Grid was supposed to save Fulton employees from having to drive around to manually check each meter in town each month, reducing personnel costs and pollution emissions. It was also intended to help the utility department monitor and quickly pinpoint outages.

In 2019, the entire system crashed, forcing the city to rebuild the servers. The meters still accurately monitored energy consumption — but that information wasn’t fed back to the billing system. Instead, employees had to go out and take manual readings.

Since then, the city has changed billing systems and successfully reconnected some of the meters to it. Others still aren’t working right — many must be manually reentered into the new database.

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In 2017, a Dutch study revealed that “Smart” Meters can have errors between 30% and 582% (see 1, 2)!  Utility companies don’t like to admit to that though.  Instead, they say things like “Smart” Meters are more accurate than analog meters and customers had actually been underpaying for years (see 1, 2).  Of course, in many cases, customer rates are also increased for their installation AND frequent replacement (see 1, 2, 3, 4).  In fact, research has determined that some low-income Americans are paying more for “Smart” Meters.

Utility companies continue to defend these meters though because they are extremely profitable.  Original analog meters are one-way transmitting whereas “Smart” Meters are 2-way transmitting.  This feature allows them to collect minute-by-minute usage data which they can analyze in order to market more products and services to customers.  Utilities can also sell this data to 3rd parties (see 1, 2).  Because the meters are 2-way transmitting, utility companies can also remotely turn off services and ration customer usage.

Activist Post Recommended Book: The Age of Surveillance Capitalism

Of course, the 2-way wireless transmission feature also creates high levels of harmful electromagnetic radiation (see 1, 2, 3).  So there have also been numerous reports about health issues in people and animals after “Smart” Meters have been installed (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10).  Some utilities now allow customers to “opt out” because of all the complaints.

More ugly details about “Smart” Grids and Meters are revealed in free online documentary, Take Back Your Power.  Opposition to these meters is worldwide. 

Activist Post reports regularly about “Smart” Meters and other unsafe technology.  For more information, visit our archives and the following websites:

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