On Feb. 14, Center for Electrosmog Prevention (CEP), a La Mesa nonprofit, requested that the CPUC judge still working on several much-anticipated smart meter opt-out proposals speed up the process while considering "lessons learned" from the flawed PG&E opt-out plan adopted Feb. 1st by state regulators.
So far, California's only smart meter opt-out plan applies just to PG&E customers, while many Southern Californians, in SDG&E and SCE utility company territories, wait anxiously for the opportunity to get rid of the risky smart meters on their homes and businesses.
Some, experiencing blinding or daily headaches, nausea, ringing ears, pain, dizziness, heart and breathing problems, extreme discomfort, even reports of new onset of seizures, with loss of use of their home and property, have been asking for removal of the new utility smart meters for the past several years, with refusal by the utilities.
These symptoms, which sufferers report began with the installation of the smart meters, are backed up by decades of studies on microwave rf radiation, according to the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) and Santa Cruz County Health Department, both of which issued damning positions on smart meters in January.
Incredibly, SDG&E and SCE have both been adamant about keeping the devices on homes where complainants say they are ill from smart meters, even with doctors' notes, and even continued to install the meters, despite alarming complaints, throughout their territories.
PG&E worked with its customers more often, according to reports, allowing some to have optional devices, including analog meters (traditional, electromechanical meters that do not emit microwave radiation and have never led to health complaints), even before their opt-out ruling was approved.
PG&E also agreed to provide analogs as an opt-out option, in January, in contrast to SDG&E and SCE, which have both steadfastly refused to do so. In addition to health concerns, smart meter over-billing, fires, safety, security, and privacy issues have many customers eager to "dump" the new meters.
CEP asked Judge Yip-Kikugawa, working on the pending opt-out proposals for San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and Southern California Edison (SCE), to address a number of pertinent areas. These included using analog meters as the only opt-out choice and defining analog meters as electromechanical (non-electronic, non-rf-emitting, non-communicating); speeding up the process (which has been dangerously slow); a no-cost-to-consumer opt-out and other cost factors, including receipt of a credit for customers not utilizing smart meters; removal of smart meters located near each other and establishment of "safe-zones."
CEP sent an ex parte communication to Judge Amy Yip-Kikugawa, the CPUC administrative law judge (ALJ) and all Parties to the SDG&E opt-out proceeding, A. 11-02-015. CEP filed a similar ex parte communication today, in the SCE smart meter opt-out proceeding, A1107020. CEP has recently been granted Party status in the SCE proceeding, as well.
Readers are asked to write Judge Amy Yip-Kikugawa (email@example.com), Governor Brown (who appoints and keeps the CPUC Commissioners in their positions), and the CPUC Commissioners (go to Take Action link), as well as all your federal, state, and local elected officials. Write and call SDG&E and SCE as well, demand that they agree to provide analog meters.
Share your smart meter opt-out demands and concerns with them and our Readers, below, in Comments. What would you like to see the opt-out look like?
A preliminary proposed ruling by the judge is anticipated at any time, with comments to be accepted on it for a week or two, followed by a proposed ruling that the Commissioners at the CPUC will vote on, perhaps by the middle of March. Please share this article and our CEP flier with your email lists, family members, friends, churchand other organizational members, and neighbors. Call local media to ask for them to cover this story.
Delaying immediate relief for the suffering and at-risk public is unconscionable, as is denying anyone the ability to occupy and enjoy their own home and property in safety and health. Structuring an opt-out so that some may find relief while others may not is unacceptable.
This type of radiation does not stop at the wall to your home, or your neighbors' homes, but penetrates and can cause health risks and damage, according to thousands of studies and a growing number of health experts. We do not ask for a half-measure, nor one crafted to promote self-serving corporate or government interests.
We demand that the CPUC protect the public's health and safety as it is mandated to do, while regulating utilities. We ask that CPUC provides SDG&E and SCE customers with a protective no-cost-to-consumer opt-out solution for immediate relief with removal of smart meters for anyone who wishes it. This should include safe zones around homes (removal of neighboring meters) for those who request it, with the development of a plan to dump all these dangerous wireless smart meters in the very near future a "no-brainer". Anything less is completely unacceptable in America.
The CEP Ex Parte Communication appears below and in full, above, in Media.
BEFORE THE PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
(Filed March 24, 2011)
NOTICE OF EX PARTE COMMUNICATION
Pursuant to Rule 8.3 of the California Public Utilities Commission (Commission) Rules of Practice and Procedure, Center for Electrosmog Prevention (CEP) hereby gives notice of the ex parte communication sent by e-mail and reproduced below. The e-mail was sent on February 10, 2012, at 2:52 pm to the following e-mail addresses:
(CPUC Judge Amy Yip-Kikugawa, firstname.lastname@example.org) and all Parties to A. 11-03-015, including representatives for CPUC, Sempra Energy, SDG&E, & UCAN. Addresses may be seen in the .pdf, as filed, in Media, top right)
date: Fri, Feb 10, 2012 at 2:52 PM
Dear Judge Yip-Kikugawa,
I am writing today, on an ex parte basis, to communicate areas of concern that our organization feels need to be addressed in the upcoming proposed decision in the matter of the opt-out proceeding for San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E), "Application of Utility Consumers? Action Network for Modification of Decision 07-04-043 so as to Not Force Residential Customers to Use Smart Meters: Application 11-03-015". These areas include:
1. The only opt-out choice being an analog meter.
2. The need for a firm definition of "analog" - ie. analog shall be construed to mean a utility meter that is a "traditional" analog - entirely electromechanical, is not electronic, does not emit rf radiation or cause other emissions along indoor wiring, and has no wireless capability.
3. No financial or other disincentives for those who opt-out to analog, including no rate increases associated with analog use (ie. to top or middle tier of TOU rating for instance); and no cost to utility customer, as customer has already been billed for smart meter program and should receive a credit.
4. Credit from the smart meter program be issued to those signing up for analog meters
5. Analog meters should be seen as a basic device provided free to the utility customer, not as a special or additional service.
6. If any fee is required, though our organization is against fees of any kind:
a. that low income customers, including but not limited to the elderly, unemployed, and disabled, have to pay no fee at all for the changeout nor on a monthly basis.
b. Any other fee, if levied, for non-low income customers, should be extremely minimal.
c. the reading of co-located meters should be one visit, period, as should meters near each other (neighboring). Opt-out costs are excessive and have obviously been padded by utilities.
d. that households will not be charged for multiple meter fees or costs, whether gas or electric, or both.
The customers did not cause these problems and the company and its investors should bear the brunt of the mistakes that caused them. Further, the utilities are making more money than before off the smart meter program and that will more than pay for these opt-outs.
7. Speeding the process up at the CPUC level to provide relief on a more urgent basis for those who need to avoid rf radiation, on the advice of their physicians in many cases
8. Requirement that utility company informs all customers of their choices in multiple ways, without deterring people to choose analog, including but not limited to advertisements in major media, website info, emailings, and notice to be mailed to each customer. This notice should also include information that some customers have not wanted to have a smart meter for a variety of reasons, including exposure to rf radiation, privacy, and security.
9. Establishment of smart meter free zone around one's property, to include neighboring meters that trespass upon one's property with rf radiation, for those who wish to do so, to avoid rf radiation
10. Replacement of all co-located smart meters with analog meters, whether it be two or any number above that, automatically, at no cost to customers
11. Use of wording that assures customers that they will be assured of these choices in perpetuity.
12. A hearing, within 30 days, on the reasons for customers desiring the opt-out should be held, including those related to health, with independent experts testifying on behalf of utility customers, and state and county health departments, as well as independent physician associations for environmental exposures involved. This should not delay preliminary opt-out relief.
Susan Brinchman, Founder / Director Center for Electrosmog Prevention (CEP); Southern Californians Against Smart Meters (SCASM;) American Coalition Against Smart Meters
P.O. Box 655 La Mesa, CA, 91944-0655 email@example.com
“The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is.” Winston Churchill
Dated: February 13, 2012 Respectfully Submitted,
/s/ Martin Homec
Attorney for Center for Electrosmog Prevention
P. O. Box 4471
Davis, CA 95617
Related articles in local media:
East County Magazine
North County Times (2/4/12): "Energy: Customers to Get Opportunity to Dump Smart Meters"
Related articles on La Mesa Patch:
California Health Department Cites Smart Meter Health Risks in Report http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/california-health-department-cites-smart-meter-health-risks-in-report
PUC Orders PG&E to Offer Analog Meters as Sole Smart Meter Opt-Out Option http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/puc-orders-pge-to-offer-analog-meters-as-smart-meter-opt-out-option
PG&E, Northern Calif. Utility, Signals Willingness to Restore Analog Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/articles/letter-from-sue?1325479603
SDG&E Files Opt-Out Proposal for Its Problem-Ridden Smart Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/sdge-files-opt-out-proposal-for-its-problem-ridden-smart-meters
Revealed: SDG&E Smart Meter Technical Data and Bio-Effects http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/revealed-sdge-smart-meter-technical-data-and-bio-effects-of-microwave-radiation
Open Letter to Sempra & SDG&E Demanding Analog Meter Replacement of Smart Meter http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/open-letter-to-sempra-sdge-demanding-analog-meter-replacement-of-smart-meter
SDG&E May Have to Provide Smart Meter Opt-Out Plan to State PUC http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/sdge-ordered-to-provide-smart-meter-opt-out-proposal-to-cpuc
Protest SDG&E Rate Hikes, Smart Meters at PUC Meetings http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/protest-sdge-rate-hikes-smart-meters-at-cpuc-local-meetings
Alert: PUC Commissioner Orders SDG&E & SCE to Let Customers Delay Smart Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/alert-puc-commissioner-orders-sdge-sce-to-let-customers-delay-smart-meters
The Great CPUC Dog and Pony Show (aka Smart Meter Opt-Out Workshop) http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/the-great-cpuc-dog-and-pony-show-aka-smart-meter-opt-out-workshop
Anti-Smart Meter Rally, Press Conference and Smart Meter Opt-Out Workshop 9/14/11 http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/anti-smart-meter-rally-press-conference-and-smart-meter-optout-workshop-91411
Underlying Cause of the Southwestern Blackout, Sept. 8, 2011: Failure of the Smart Grid http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/underlying-cause-of-the-southwestern-blackout-sept-8-2011-failure-of-the-smart-grid
Living Nightmare: How SDG&E Smart Meter Led to Headaches, Hearing Loss http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/living-nightmare-how-sdge-smart-meters-led-to-my-headaches-sleeping-ills-hearing-loss
Smart Meter Nightmare #2: San Diego man sick from bank of smart meters http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/smart-meter-nightmare-2-san-diego-man-sick-from-bank-of-meters
Smart Meter Nightmare #3: East County Woman and Pet Sick, Begging for Help http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/smart-meter-nightmare-3-east-county-woman-and-pet-sick-begging-for-help#c
Smart Meter Nightmare #4: SoCal Landlord Says Meters Hurting Her Tenants http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/smart-meter-nightmare-4-socal-landlord-says-meters-hurting-her-tenants
Smart Meter Nightmare #5: Senior Citizen Replaces Smart Meter With Analog http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/smart-meter-nightmare-5-senior-citizen-replaces-smart-meter-with-analog#comments
THESE TWO BELOW RELATED, BUT NON-PATCH, TO ARTICLE ABOVE:
Local woman confronts PG&E over ‘smart meter’
Resident tells PG&E to end her service
Message for SDG&E: Allow Opt-outs from Smart Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/tell-sdge-allow-opt-outs-from-smart-meters-remove-all-wireless
Take Action: How to Opt Out of Radiation-Emitting Smart Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/blog_posts/take-action-how-to-opt-out-of-radiation-emitting-smart-meters
Open Letter to the La Mesa City Council: Tell SDG&E to Stop the Smart Meters http://lamesa.patch.com/articles/an-open-letter-to-the-la-mesa-city-council-stop-the-smart-meters
Founder / Director Center for Electrosmog Prevention (CEP)
Southern Californians Against Smart Meters (SCASM)
American Coalition Against Smart Meters
Smart Meter Dangers www.smartmeterdangers.org
Educational Speaker's Packet: Reasons to Say No to Smart Meters
P.O. Box 655
La Mesa, CA, 91944-0655