Wednesday March 14, 2012

Community News

Urban Meter Myths

FVRD receives petition against devices

Submitted by Dehlia Simper, Lake Errock

 

n March 13, 2012 Dehlia Simper led a delegation to ask the local government to make a motion to the provincial government for a moratorium on smart meters in area C and presented a petition with more than 100 signatures.

Dehlia Simper speaks to the FVRD Board of Directors Tuesday.

 

While there Simper also spoke to the panel of regional directors about some of the public’s concerns and submitted the following article:

 

Unveiling the Smart Meter Myths

Following the Corporate Agenda

Who are the real benefactors of the one billion dollar Smart Meter Program? Chances are that the program will further move BC Hydro towards bankruptcy and add to it’s already over 4 billion dollar debt. Ultimately that could be a set up for privatization set in motion by the Liberal Government.

One would have to question a technology that is being forced upon the public in British Columbia and violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as well as not being approved by our own BC Utilities Commission or by the Canadian Standards Association. Since when would citizens knowingly, allow electrical appliances or devices into their homes that aren’t CSA approved, especially if it voided their home insurance contract? When BC Hydro was asked about this they responded by saying that under the current legislation these smart meters don’t have to comply.

On the other hand according to the BC Utilities Commission, BC Hydro is required by law, under the "Clean Energy Act" and the "Smart Meter and Smart Grid Regulation", to install smart meters for each of its 1.8 million customers by the end of 2012. According to the BC Utilities Commission, "The Clean Energy Act exempts the Smart Meter Program from Sections 45-47 and 71 of the Utilities Commission Act".

As a defense against Canadian de-regulation, BC Hydro did mention that smart meters are approved by ANSI or the American National Standards Institute which is also a member of the

ISO or International Organization for Standardization. ISO states under its "Code of Ethics" a mandate "to promote the implementation of International standards and associated good conformity assessment practices" and "to reduce the barriers to trade, including those that may be created by technical regulation".

Is it just coincidence that the World Bank Logo is superimposed on the ISO logo? The globalization agenda deepens as we learn that Echelon, a company with its head office out of San Jose California has the billion dollar contract for the smart meter program and Corix has signed a contract valued at 73 million for installation of the smart meters. Who is going to fit the bill when one of these meters defaults electrically? It certainly won’t be BC Hydro who deflects the liability and cost back to the customer. When someone’s home burns down after having a smart meter installed, the customers wiring and the electrical beyond the meter is blamed. In some cases this could be due to older wiring that is not compatible to the newer meters or power surges from misaligned or incorrectly adjusted installations. This leads to some technical and safety issues in regards to the meters and the installation of the meters. Corix has hired installers after a 14 day training program but they are not electricians nor are they certified. Furthermore, Corix doesn’t have the contract or the technicians to fix the meters should they falter and BC Hydro doesn’t have the right to use its certified unionized meter techs and FSRs or Field Service Representatives to do so.

In addition, it has been disclosed by a reliable inside BC Hydro source that only 1 meter per batch is tested for defects and when these smart meters falter, the onus is being put on the BC Hydro customer instead of where it should be. It is possible that customers are receiving outrageous bills because these meters have not been properly tested for accuracy or other requirements? Although many are under the assumption that the meters are state of the art, in fact due to technology being outdated so fast these days, by the time Corix started installing them, they were already outdated. This ‘older technology’ is not secure and is easy for ‘Hackers’ to access through our on line computer system, making it possible for tech criminals to hack into the data base, switch meters and match up bills with different meters.

Also in accordance with this reliable information source, BC Hydro has a contract with the corporation "Accenture" which trades as ACN on the Stock Exchange. Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company with world leading clients from the corporate and government sectors in more than 120 countries including 92 of the fortune Global 100 and generates revenues of $25.5 billion dollars per year. "Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high performance businesses and governments". One would concede that the agenda of a private corporation would be to create a profit for its share holders by cutting its costs and lowering its standards of quality in order to accomplish this task.

Accenture accepted a contract with BC Hydro but had to adopt this unionized group of meter readers as part of the package, reserving the discretion to fire the approximate 500 meter readers in BC when all the smart meters have been installed. This move would go against the social relation initiatives by BC Hydro in regards to its employees who were told the opposite of this. Last summer a meeting was held with BC Hydro employees in Chilliwack to promote the perceived benefits of the program, at which time they were told by another representative of BC Hydro that no one would be fired due to the smart meter implementation. Two days following this meeting, 200 Linesmen were fired.

Many concerns have been addressed since the start of the Smart Meter Program in BC including those relating to health, rights, privacy, safety, cost, liability and regulation. I believe that as we dig further to reveal the truths, many of the myths propagated by the corporations are dispelled and leave us with many unanswered questions that deserve further independent investigation. We now live in a world where we can no longer trustingly accept the belief that government will protect us, as the corporate agenda is showing up through and through on all levels of society. We must maintain our public utilities by becoming active in the public interest or the private sector will take over that which we have always taken for granted.

See photos from the meeting below.

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