Stop Smart Meters! Bulletin
Vol. 2 October 27th, 2010
Post Office Box 66165 Scotts Valley CA 95067
BREAKING NEWS: NORTH BAY PROTEST TOMORROW!!: (Thurs., October 28th 7:30am-9am @ 5500 Commerce Blvd in Rohnert Park) More info below.
What are Smart Meters!?
The installation of wireless gas and electric meters is one of the largest technology rollouts in history. Yet in California and other states, there was virtually no consultation with the public and local governments in advance of the $2.2 billion “Advanced Metering Infrastructure” (or AMI) project — the first mandatory microwave radiation device to be installed on our homes and businesses. Wireless EMF radiation has been linked with cancer and DNA damage at power levels far below FCC standards, in peer-reviewed scientific studies. “Smart” meters pose health risks, violate individual privacy, interfere with electronic appliances, increase carbon emissions and overcharge customers. But utility companies and tech firms love them because they allow them to layoff meter readers and generate more profit! Luckily, more communities every day are learning the facts and refusing the DumbMeter onslaught.
What is “Stop Smart Meters!”?
Growing out of the grassroots group Scotts Valley Neighbors Against Smart Meters, which was started in June, Stop Smart Meters! is now a statewide advocacy, media outreach, and direct action group providing activism consultation and advice to dozens of local groups around the state (and now around the country) who are fighting the wireless ‘smart’ meter assault.
The fight against ‘smart’ meters has brought about new, unexpected political alliances. Please join us and add your voice to thousands of others. More info, regular news updates, analysis, and tips on resisting ‘smart’ meters at our website: http://stopsmartmeters.org
To add yourself or others to the distribution list for this newsletter, please send a request to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
THANK YOU FOR DONATING TO STOP SMART METERS!
Thank you to everyone who stepped up last month and supported our work with funds that go directly to organizing and continuing the fight. Even if it’s only a small amount, it all adds up and it really goes a long way toward making this education and advocacy possible. Please chip in if you can!
Please make checks payable to “EON”, write Stop Smart Meters! on the memo line and send to Stop Smart Meters! c/o Joshua Hart Post Office Box 66165 Scotts Valley CA 95067. Thank you for your support!
CHECK OUT OUR ALLIES
We urge you to get to know, and contribute to our friends at the following organizations, who are all working on different angles of the smart meter issue:
Health and Safety: EMF Safety Network (health and safety) http://emfsafetynetwork.org
Health and Environment: Environmental Options Network (EON) http://eon3.net
EON EMF Blog: http://eon3emfblog.net/
Environmental Health Trust: http://www.environmentalhealthtrust.org/
Privacy issues: Electronic Frontier Foundation http://eff.org
Consumer Rights: The Utility Reform Network (TURN, works on consumer) http://turn.org
PROTEST to STOP SMART METERS TOMORROW!!
In August, Stop Smart Meters! supporters bravely risked arrest and successfully shut down Wellington Energy’s installation yard in Pleasure Point, Capitola for 4 days. It appears that PG&E didn’t like the media exposure, and decided to turn tail and run. Neighbors tell us that PG&E recently abandoned the facility, trucking thousands of ‘smart’ meters to other yards in San Jose and Salinas, from where they continue to install the radiating meters throughout the area (albeit with a greater carbon footprint). You can watch our 15-minute video covering these events here.
Instead of listening to their customers and the citizens of California, PG&E and their golf buddies on the CPUC continue to force devices onto our homes that are ripping us off and making us sick.
California is not going to take it lying down! We’re calling for mass protests against PG&E’s continued smart meter installations:
NORTH BAY PROTEST TOMORROW!!: Thurs., October 28th 7:30am-9am : 5500 Commerce Blvd in Rohnert Park
Bring signs, banners, noisemakers, coffee and your friends as we confront this unwanted trespass into our communities. If you have a ride to offer or need a ride from your area, please contact Sandi Maurer at email@example.com. See you tomorrow morning and please spread the word!!!
LEGAL ACTION BEING PREPARED- DONATE IF YOU CAN!
West Marin Citizens Against Smart Meters- in collaboration with other groups- is fed up and they are taking PG&E to court. Please support their efforts! Tony Bothwell has been selected as the lawyer who will be filing a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against smart meter installation throughout PG&E territory. Tony was employed by a utility in Florida before becoming a lawyer and also has experience with the media, having worked as an AP editor.
Tony is also currently representing a whistleblower from PG&E who warned about the problems with the gas lines before the explosion in San Bruno. What we need to get this started are funds. If those who could manage could donate at least $100.00-$150.00, we would be off to a good start. Most people are against smart meters, so be sure to ask your friends and neighbors for donations. It’s one way folks can help prevent this disaster against our security, safety, health and privacy that we’re all working so hard on now. Thanks for being generous and in helping to stop smart meters! Please make checks payable to EON, again important to memo it “Bothwell lawsuit” and send to: EON P.O. Box 1047 Bolinas, CA 94924
JOIN OUR ‘WELLINGTON NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH’ CONTEST!
We are continuing to ask for your help with a statewide ‘Wellington Watch.’ If you see any white trucks with a shell on the back and the words “Wellington Energy” on the doors, please warn your neighbors, tell them they have the right to refuse installation, and report the incident to us. Record video or take photos if you can. Working together with our neighbors, we can stop this undemocratic microwave trespass on our homes and businesses.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT OPPOSITION GROWS
The number of local governments opposed to the ‘smart’ meter program continues to grow. A total of 18 cities and 3 counties throughout CA have now formally opposed PG&E’s ‘smart’ meter program. It is even illegal under ordinance to install in Fairfax, Watsonville, and Santa Cruz County. Call the sheriff if you see installations in any of these areas. The updated list of local governments protesting can be found here at the EMF Safety Network site. Is your city or county on the list? If not, why not send them a letter? Sample letter here.
SMART METERS A CULPRIT IN SAN BRUNO BLAST?
Our hearts go out to the victims of the San Bruno explosion in September. Tragically, the signs are beginning to point to the possibility that a ‘smart’ meter may have played a role in the fire and explosion that likely killed more than a dozen people, injured dozens more and destroyed an entire neighborhood. Full article here.
CA ASSEMBLY REQUESTS OFFICIAL REPORT ON SMART METER HEALTH IMPACTS
Assemblymember Jared Huffman (D- San Rafael) has requested a report from the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST) on the potential health impacts of wireless ‘smart’ meters. The report is expected to be released in December. People are encouraged to contact Jared Huffman and Mark Leno and urge them to support a halt to wireless ‘smart’ meter installation. Contact info: http://www.assembly.ca.gov
WHAT DO WE WANT? AN IMMEDIATE MORATORIUM. WHEN DO WE WANT IT? NOW!
There has been some talk of solving the smart meter crisis with an ‘opt out provision’- to give individuals and perhaps cities and counties the right to ‘opt out’ of the ‘smart’ meter program. This is not an acceptable solution– if EMF from wireless technology is potentially harmful, it should not be installed on a widespread basis throughout our communities- period. We need an immediate halt to installations, public hearings and investigations into health and safety impacts.
CPUC BLASTED BY STATE WATCHDOG FOR IGNORING SMART METER DANGERS
The California Public Utilities Commission’s own Division of Ratepayer Advocates (DRA) last week blasted the appointed members of the Commission for failing to adequately investigate potentially lethal problems with PG&E’s ‘Smart’ Meter program. Saying that ‘there is clearly a high level of public concern’ about the health impacts of ‘smart’ meters, the DRA forcefully asserts that ‘the Commission would be remiss in its duty to ensure “safe and reliable” service if it did not solicit further evidence and perform an analysis.” (on health problems associated with RF emissions, the ignition potential of meters in proximity to natural gas lines, and electronic interference associated with ‘smart’ meters.) Full article here.
STUDY: RADIATION FROM CORDLESS PHONE BASE STATION AFFECTS HEART
In a study that could be critical in proving that electrohypersensitivity is a real and measurable biological condition, Prof. Magda Havas published this study in the European Journal of Oncology Details here.
PG&E THREATENS HOMEOWNERS WITH FINES FOR REFUSING ‘SMART’ METER
PG&E has recently begun using the bullying tactic, threatening those who refuse installation with large fines. A source in Salinas tells us that a Wellington employee said that PG&E will charge fees if they have to return to install the meters. So the resident said yes, even though she didn’t want the meters.
Another report from Fairfax, a town that banned “smart” meters in June: a smart meter was installed on an individual’s home while they were not there. Another person said, and I quote, “I was bullied by a PGE person in San Anselmo…He was dressed in semi-combat gear and told me that I could NOT opt out!” If you have heard anything similar, please contact us.
CELL PHONE RADIATION HEALTH FEARS GROW- LOCAL GOVERNMENTS ACT
Dr. Devra Davis swung through the Bay Area at the same time as the huge CTIA cell industry conference at Moscone Center in San Francisco. Local governments including SF and Burlingame are requiring cell phone labelling in the absence of state and federal action to inform consumers about how much radiation phones emit. Brain tumor victims are speaking out- watch this video and send to your friends who are still holding cells to their heads. Watch the recent Burlingame City Council meeting where industry and health groups clash- starts at about 30 minutes into the video here.
Davis’ Environmental Health Trust is asking people to join their Campaign for Safer Cell Phones on Facebook and Twitter: Until the end of October, 1 new follower = $1 for their cause!! No cost to you and this will help raise awareness to save the brains of our children and grandchildren. It will only take a moment. Please pass this on to friends and family. Our message for teens is “Practice Safe Phone”!
Here are the precautions you can take now:
1. Use a wired headset
2. Don’t carry phone in your pocket or keep it on while on your body
3. Beware of weak signal
4. Keep it away from children
5. Don’t leave it on your nightstand or under your pillow while sleeping.
SMARTMETER OPPOSITION: HIDDEN VALLEY TAKES A STAND!
PG&E is about to invade the Hidden Valley Drive area of Santa Rosa, and most long time residents are now expressing their open opposition to the plan. The yellow yard signs say it all, “Refuse PG&E Smartmeter Installation.” Most of the people we talked to are extremely disturbed. “Did anyone consult us when they decided we need a new wireless meter broadcasting 24 hours a day?” One neighbor said the PG&E tech had told her the reason for the changeout is the existing meters are “just old”. Her reply, “I’m old too!” His response, “Well we could just turn off your gas.”
As far as they are concerned, “Valley” residents would appreciate remaining “hidden” from the onslaughts of the smartmeter and would be more than happy to continue to greet their local friendly meter readers for years to come. More details: firstname.lastname@example.org
ADD YOUR NAME TO THE GROWING ANTI-SMART METER PETITION
Please take a minute (really just 30 seconds!) to sign this petition that calls for a state wide moratorium. It could really make a difference. We are trying to reach 10000 signatures. Once you have signed, please ask your friends and family to sign as well.
COULD WIRELESS ANTENNAS BE THE NEXT ASBESTOS?
“Throughout the years, insurers have been concerned that an issue similar to asbestos would create a new round of endless losses for the industry. Lead paint, toxic mold, silica and other harmful substances have caught the interest of the plaintiffs bar, but nothing has come close to asbestos.
However, an issue that mimics asbestos and is being ignored by insurers could soon hit their pocketbooks. Simply stated, everyone’s favorite form of wireless communication and commerce depends on radio frequency-producing base station antennas, which emit radio waves and microwaves that can harm humans.” Full Article Here
WIFI IN SCHOOLS: CONTROVERSY IN THE AIR
Wireless internet is being installed in schools around the world, but not everyone is gung ho about this technology. Some are fighting back and demanding that schools become ‘electro-smog’ free zones. Here are three videos online about the problem:
NEUROSCIENTISTS: WORLD NEEDS A “WAKE UP CALL” ON RF RADIATION
A new video on EMF radiation entitled “Wake Up Call” has been produced by Thomas Grønborg in Denmark, featuring Professor Olle Johansson of the Department of Neuroscience
In Stockholm, Sweden. Watch it here.
PG&E DUMPS TOXINS ON NORTHERN CA COMMUNITY- HEALTH SUFFERS
PG&E has not been a good corporate citizen over the years. In Laytonville, CA PG&E dumped transformers containing PCBs next to the Cahto Reservation. This has caused serious health impairments including cancer. A retired driver for PG&E described what he did and saw.
CAPITOLA FREEDOM FORUM EVENT TO BE STREAMED ONLINE
Santa Cruz Community TV taped the Freedom Forum event “Are Smart Meters Smart?” with Dr. Karl Maret, Dennis Norton (Vice Mayor of Capitola) and Josh Hart. The presentation is available at http://www.communitytv.org <http://www.communitytv.org>
CANADIAN’S DEMAND ACTION ON WIRELESS EXPOSURE
Canadians are lobbying their national government to take EMF more seriously, demanding an immediate investigation, moratorium on new telecommunications facilities, exposure reductions, EMF free zones, and public warnings. The platform includes 18 Recommendations to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Health (HESA).
SMART METER BATTLE SPREADS TO MAINE
As public awareness of the truth about smart meters grows, new areas are fighting back:
“So Central Maine Power Co.’s attempt to convince people that there is but one side to the science only serves to sidestep the facts about smart meters, which emit non-ionizing radiation and will be attached to our homes without our consent.” Read more: http://www.theforecaster.net/content/pnms-forumboxer-102010
LEARN WHAT INDUSTRY INSIDERS ARE SAYING ABOUT OUR CAMPAIGN
Several industry websites are covering the growing consumer backlash against ‘smart’ meters, and these discussions shed some light on what in the hell they were thinking when they unleashed such a huge project on the American public without even asking us.
Here’s what one says: “Déjà vu all over again – a wireless meter electromagnetic radiation cancer scare just when utilities are starting to pick up some steam in installing Smart Grid. These are big, unforeseen speed bumps on the road to Smart Grid implementation and more could follow. Historically, this sort of intervener concern gets organized and gains power quickly and you can bet we’re going to see coast-to-coast pockets of delay in wireless smart meter AMI implementation.” Full article here. Also, a forum on ‘smart grid’ progress here.
HOW SAFETY IS CREATED
Video here about the way in which national regulations on EMF are set- fascinating:
MAN DISPUTES $11,857 BILL FROM PG&E
Brent Paul owns Paul Farms with his brother and dad. He says this month’s bill to run his gyp-silo, a farm silo that mixes calcium into soil, is so ridiculously high, it’s comical. In past years, the electric bills have ranged from $26 to around $80, but after a new SmartMeter was installed, that bill shot up to $11,857.99. “It’s just proof that the SmartMeter is not very smart,” Paul told 17 News. More here.
Media Update and Links
Joshua Hart of Stop Smart Meters! interviewed on KSCO- great radio show with call-ins!
Scarborough, Maine asks CMP to postpone installation of smart meters
Chicago area court halts smart meter program
Toronto Sun: smart meters “shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic, after it hit the iceberg”
AP Story on Growing Smart Meter Resistance
In Maine, dissenters have sent dozens of e-mails and letters to regulators and health officials just as the state’s largest utility, Central Maine Power Co., begins its smart-meter rollout. A louder protest has come in California, where cities have passed moratoriums on the meters, demonstrators have blocked installation of the devices, and regulators have received thousands of complaints.
How Safe are New X-Ray Airport Scanners?
PG&E seeks suspension of Watsonville’s SmartMeter citations: City pondering next step
Watsonville May Spend Money on SmartMeter Hurdle
“It’d be wise for PG&E not to try to put a blue-collar, hardworking community such as Watsonville, in this type of predicament…It’s something very simple to ask to hold off for 12 months when they have a lot of other stuff going on why not focus on those issues and avoid litigation,” said Mayor Alejo.
Smart meters mean end of Marijuana Grow Operations: Fire chief
Maine Smart Meter critics make the news— in Bakersfield (SF Gate too)
Shrub killed by smart meter: https://stopsmartmeters.wordpress.com/2010/10/18/more-smart-meter-health-impacts-reported/
Privacy Violations: Interview with Lee Tien of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
Oct. 28th: Rohnert Park Protest (see details above)
November 2nd– Election Day- remember to support candidates who place human health and safety- not corporate profits- first!
November 4th: Smart Meter Forum at Sleepy Hollow Club House on at 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 18th: The Commonwealth Club will host a half-day program on “The Health Effects of Electromagnetic Fields with leading international experts. Registration and complimentary light lunch start at 11:15 a.m.; program begins promptly at 12:00 p.m. Tickets $20 members, $32 non-members, $10 students (with ID). Register at Commonwealth Club 415-597-6705 or www.commonwealthclub.org View Full Program Here
Stop Smart Meters!
Smart Meters Wiki
EMF Safety Network
Ecological Options Network
Environmental Health Trust
Smart Meters Wiki
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