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Ever Heard of a 'Smart Meter?'

New technology will bring changes to monthly bills and the way meters are read.

In another industry transition to digital technology, BGE will soon phase in new equipment to replace its home and business electric and gas meters.

Starting in late April, in Pasadena, BGE will begin switching from analog to digital technology to operate its gas and electric system with the installation of smart meters. It will take three years to complete the project.

Pasadena was chosen as a central location in the county to start, according to BGE.

In total, 1.3 million analog electric meters will be replaced with digital ones, and 700,000 gas meters will be upgraded by the end of 2014.

Once installed and operating as expected, there won't be a need for meter readers. According to BGE's website, those employees will be retrained for other jobs.

BGE's investment in smart grid technology will cost customers in the future.

The Department of Energy provided a $200 million grant to offset the $482 million total cost of the program, leaving $282,000 not covered by the grant. Customers can expect a rate increase in 2015.

“The rate increase will happen in a few years after we’ve implemented the functions and features [of the smart meter]," said Rhea Lewis, BGE manager of corporate communications.

Lewis couldn't provide an estimated rate percentage increase but said that the amount customers will save in energy costs over time with smart meters will more than cover the meter-related surcharge.

"While BGE will seek to recover additional program costs through rate changes that customers will see on their bills, we believe that customers can expect their savings will be significantly greater than any potential costs," Lewis wrote in an email to Patch.

"Customer savings will come from reduced energy and operating costs as well as the new programs BGE will introduce for customers to help them manage energy use and bills." 

Lewis explained that BGE would have to go before the Public Service Commission (PSC), to show that the benefits to smart meters outweigh any potential cost increase to customers. She added that the commission will then make a decision.

A letter describing the switch to meters was sent to customers in March.

There is not an opt-out program now, but Lewis said BGE may consider one. In the meantime, she said, the scheduled installations will begin at the end of the month in Pasadena and will continue as planned.

A public hearing on the opt-out program is scheduled for May 22 at the PSC located at 6 St. Paul St. in Baltimore, according to Lewis. The PSC's website also mentions that there will be a discussion on establishing a surcharge to recover costs at the meeting.

Are you in favor of smart meter technology? Vote in our poll below.

kingofodenton2 June 23, 2012 at 01:36 PM
@Traci as I continued to review the links you posted I will say they are from more credible sources than the ones George posted. While I might not agree with what you posted I am keeping an open mind about this issue. Research and Information from credible sources help people make informed choices. Lies and propoganda from dubious sources muddy the issue. Whether you are for or against Smart Meters it is wrong to post information that is wrong or misleading to try to sway people to your side of the issue.
Traci M. Radice June 23, 2012 at 05:32 PM
And just because you don't like it or are fighting against it, does not mean it is lies or propaganda. What *I* find as credible, you may not, and that is fine. Just as In a courtroom, each side puts on evidence of two different sides and it is up to a non-biased third party to sift through and find what he/she decides is the most credible. Difference is there is more civility in a courtroom than is found on these Patch posts. sad. I have not called anyone here a liar or a quack because of what he/she believes in and wish others would do the same. If you are for the SMeters, post your credible evidence. If you are against SMeters, post your credible evidence and let the people decide. Isn't that why we are here? (btw, this was not directed at just you kingofodenton2)
kingofodenton2 June 24, 2012 at 12:41 AM
I try to keep things civil. Sometimes I type before I think it through. I belive everyone has the right to voice their opinion. However, I have read several people on here picking and choosing quotes from articles that fit their points and leaving out the rest of the information because it doesn't support their claim.George quoted someones research and at the end of the article he was referencing the Dr that conducted the study stated that he was wrong and changed his views. In my opinion it is wrong to quote research that the person who conducted the research stated that it is now not valid.
George Karadimas June 24, 2012 at 01:03 AM
The objective is to present information for educational purposes of the readers, so they can make up their own minds as to what is involved. The article you are referring presented a number of concerns in the analysis, irrespective of the conclusion. Which may or may not have been biased because of the circumstances of the author. We do not live in a free world as we have been mislead to believe, and at times we need to read in between the lines. Those that look for an easy answers are advised to go directly to www.bge.com and search for "Smart Meters" Those that seek independently to get their own mind to be congruent with their actions can click here. Electromagnetic fields: High-level microwave technology concerns https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B3ABCMXdUxMAeEdfQXc1U3l6dWM or here Wireless Tower Antennas, Routers and Smart Meter Safety http://www.stayonthetruth.com/open-letter-to-all-ten-canadian-provinces.php
Susan Brinchman June 25, 2012 at 12:29 AM
The radiation exposure from one smart meter = up to that from 160 cell phones (Hirsch). Not to mention that this mesh network is nothing like any individual device AND it impacts emissions on the home wiring as well as starting fires that have killed people and destroyed houses. Nothing like any other wireless device. http://www.electrosmogprevention.org/public-health-alert/smart-meters-radiation-exposure-up-to-160-times-more-than-cell-phones-hirsch/. When have you ever heard of 56 municipalities in a state taking a position that they didn't want a wireless device there, to the extent of criminalizing its installation, even? Attorneys for these municipalities and experts have convinced them of the dangers. This is an unprecedented major technological mistake.
Susan Brinchman June 25, 2012 at 12:53 AM
The good thing about this heated dialogue is it raises up the ratings and lets more people know that smart meters are dangerous.
Malaprop June 25, 2012 at 02:18 AM
Traci: You do not post scientific evidence. You post anecdotes, falsehoods, misinformation and propaganda. Yes, it is propaganda. It is written to provoke fear, not intelligent discussion. I have asked you many times, and ask again, please post evidence that the Karolinska Institute declared a "GLOBAL HEALTH WARNING." I will continue to nag you about this until you post evidence or retract the statement. And Olle Johansson, voted Misleader of the Year 2004 by the Swedish Skeptics Society, does not speak for Karolinska. He is not listed among the professors: http://ki.se/ki/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=364&dispd=1833&l=en Meanwhile, Karolinska Professor Maria Feychting, has her research posted right on ki.se. "The incidence of glioma - the most common form of brain tumour - is not increasing in the Nordic countries, contradicting the claim that mobile phone use is a cause of the disease." http://ki.se/ki/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=130&a=136019&l=en&newsdep=130 Once again, provide evidence that Karolinska has issued a "GLOBAL HEALTH WARNING"
Malaprop June 25, 2012 at 02:53 AM
Exactly what are Daniel Hirsch's credentials? He seems to have pulled this 160 factor out of thin air. Is he a physicist? A scientist? Or perhaps professional fear mongerer? He is president of committee to bridge the gap, another group seeking donations in return for generating fear. Pretty much like electrosmogprevention.
Malaprop June 25, 2012 at 02:57 AM
And I suppose in your case drives them to your website where you solicit contributions and peddle anti-emf devices to capitalize on the fear you and your anti-wireless associates generate.
Susan Brinchman June 25, 2012 at 03:57 AM
. (TABLE 10. EFFECTS OF ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION AT SOME MICROWAVE AND HIGHER FREQUENCIES (FROM STUCHLY~ 1978). 29. Headaches Eyestrain Fatigue Dizziness Disturbed sleep at night Sleepiness in daytime Moodiness Irritability Unsociability Hypochondriac reactions Feelings of fear Nervous tension Mental depression Memory impairment Pulling sensation in the scalp and brow Loss of hair Pain in muscles and heart region Breathing difficulties Increased perspiration of extremities Difficulty with sex life TABLE 11. SUBJECTIVE EFFECTS ON PERSONS WORKING IN RADIO FREQUENCY ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS (FROM DWYER, 1978). Symptomatology Bradycardia Disruption of the endocrine-humoral process Hypotension Intensification of the activity of thyroid gland Exhausting influences on the central nervous system Decrease in sensitivity to smell Increase in histamine content of the blood Subjective Complaints Increased fatigability Periodic or constant headaches Extreme irritability Sleepiness during work http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19810017132_1981017132.pdf
Malaprop June 25, 2012 at 03:59 AM
" This finding is of unknown clinical significance."
Susan Brinchman June 25, 2012 at 04:03 AM
Malapoop admits to being a wireless engineer after six months of vigorous harassment of anyone saying smart meters or RF can cause harm. ------------ On the Blog Post 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 --------------------------------------- Susan Brinchman 10:39 am on Sunday, December 11, 2011 I have a direct, very pertinent question for Malaprop. Are you now, or have you ever been contracted by or under the employment of SDG&E, any utility company, or any of their agents? yes or no? Ignoring this question will be considered a yes. ------------------------------- Malaprop 1:58 pm on Sunday, December 11, 2011 No nor have I ever been. Nor have I worked for any smart meter or wireless business nor agent. I despise fraud. ------------------------ THEN...he admits it. ----------------------- Malaprop 11:10 pm on Sunday, December 11, 2011 I have a correction to make. The parent corporation of a former employer manufactures wireless equipment. They are international, very, very large and probably sell something to utility companies. I left that company over twenty years ago and receive no payment from them. I developed theoretical models for data transmission using wired technology and factory automation before leaving the company. I have not worked in that field since. -----click his name view the posts
Malaprop June 25, 2012 at 04:14 AM
And the conflict of interest is where in 20+ years after receiving a paycheck or any compensation? BTW, that statement would be true if I worked for Wal Mart 20 years ago.
George Karadimas June 26, 2012 at 01:51 PM
Smart Meter Education in Video Format For your Viewing Pleasure. http://thepowerfilm.org/smartmetervideos/external-videos/taking-action/ Select the issue you want to learn about from the List On the Right side panel.
George Karadimas June 26, 2012 at 05:14 PM
Electromagnetic Fields and Leakage of the Blood Brain Barrier: Dr. Leif Salford http://thepowerfilm.org/smartmetervideos/external-videos/videos-health-issues/
Susan Reed June 28, 2012 at 06:36 PM
To Marc Tippin, from C. Zehfus. See Stop Smart Meters dot com for info on health and other problems. Also See the first couple of pages in this doc. prepared for WI legislators about what is wrong with smart meters, including health-wise. IT includes some links, etc. http://stopsmartmeterswisconsin.wordpress.com/2012/04/17/give-wisconsin-legislators-this-packet-for-legislative-action/
George Karadimas June 28, 2012 at 06:57 PM
"While the technocrats are fighting it out among themselves. We the "ratepayers" get stuck with antique technology before it even gets rolled out by BGE and Pepco Folks read the highlights below. This is from the horse's Mouth, that you can quote in your posts and expositions, and can not be blasted for being a "smart meter Kook"! And remember, all I wanted to do was to turn a light bulb on at night so I can see! Why does it have to be so complicated?? " http://www.grid-net.com/smarter-grid "Mesh-based metering systems promise the barely adequate delivery of six-hour-old data to the utility and day-old data to their consumers. Furthermore, today’s Advanced Metering (AMI) and Demand Response (DR) applications are typically proprietary and stand-alone implementations, which makes them costly to integrate into the back office and even more difficult to coordinate in the field. Security is almost always an afterthought. Needless to say, this approach is ill-prepared and insufficient for the demands of an always-on smarter grid."
Susan Brinchman June 29, 2012 at 11:47 PM
It is far from paranoia that industry actively tries to discredit people discussing smart meter dangers. To read about how several activist discussion groups formed to fight smart meters in California were infiltrated by a utility executive using a false name, go to PG&E Wants to Limit Info re: “Alleged Spying on Anti-Smart Meter Activists” Case http://www.electrosmogprevention.org/stop-ca-smart-meter-news/pge-wants-to-limit-info-re-alleged-spying-on-anti-smart-meter-activists-case/. There you will find California Public Utility Commission documents that surfaced in discovery, showing the dirty tricks being played. Make no mistake about it. There are shills doing that right here, same thing.
George Karadimas June 30, 2012 at 01:00 PM
Students Having Heart Attacks From Wi-Fi http://groups.google.com/group/mobilfunk_newsletter/browse_thread/thread/4ef4344fc72d7f84 http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/4052/
Malaprop June 30, 2012 at 08:46 PM
Susan could contribute positively to this discussion by providing authoritative links to the Austrian Medical Association (national) to buttress her claim that highly respected medical organizations claim harmful effects from smart meters. Yet she refuses. Instead, she prefers to hurl unsubstantiated accusations of secret payments about those who oppose her. And she does this in spite of her association with an anti-wireless website that promotes EMF protection gear and solicits donations. Now who really stands to gain financially from their activity on this discussion? We get no answers from Susan, only unfounded accusations and advertisement for a website which capitalizes on the fear she generates.
George Karadimas July 04, 2012 at 08:16 PM
NON-THERMAL EFFECTS OF ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS. NOW AVAILABLE FOR FREE DOWNLOAD.. "July 4, 2012. Are there non-thermal effects of electromagnetic fields? Health Canada says, “NO“. They state on page 9 of Safety Code 6, For frequencies from 100 kHz to 300 GHz, tissue heating is the predominant health effect to be avoided. Other proposed non-thermal effects have not been conclusively documented to occur at levels below the threshold where thermal effects arise. Really! Perhaps Health Canada scientists should read this two part document prepared by the International Commission for Electromagnetic Safety (ICEMS). Although this document was published in 2010, one year after the most recent Health Canada Safety Code 6 was updated (2009), much of the information it was based on was readily available to the review committee of Health Canada when they released their 2009 guideline." http://www.magdahavas.com/icems-non-thermal-effects-of-electromagnetic-fields-now-available-for-free-download/
George Karadimas July 04, 2012 at 08:31 PM
Cellphone Survivors & Non-Survivors: watch their stories, hear their voices. "Public health statistics have been called human beings with the tears removed. Hear the sagas of cellphone survivors and nonsurvivors and their families who are convinced that heavy cellphone use caused disabling brain tumors." http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/6025/t/0/blastContent.jsp?email_blast_KEY=1210160 http://prd34.blogspot.com/2012/07/cellphone-survivors-non-survivors-watch.html
George Karadimas July 04, 2012 at 10:48 PM
Rise of mobile masts may be associated with rise in leukaemia. "A presentation by Prof. Massa showed ample articles from the renowned Lancet asserting the incidence of leukaemia in children associated with electromagnetic fields generated by mobile phones, and especially mobile masts, with the latter having a higher concentration of energy. One gentleman raised his concern over a group of children suffering from leukaemia in Marsascala, his child having had the disease having to take a lot of time off school. One of the other children died. Is there any evidence? Only observational. But it is definitely time to map out the distribution of mobile masts superimposed on a map of the residence of children with leukaemia – especially clusters. If there is a correlation, no amount of ‘lack of evidence’ can rule out the association." http://www.independent.com.mt/news.asp?newsitemid=145141 QUESTION? Do Smart Meters operate just like a mobile masts? (Cell Phone Towers, attached to your house?) Is the concept of automated meter reading worth taking the risk?
George Karadimas July 04, 2012 at 11:10 PM
Doubts cast over consumer benefits of smart meters "SPECIAL REPORT / The European Commission has asked member states to present before September their cost-benefit analyses on the deployment of smart meters that could lead to 80% of consumers being equipped with intelligent metering systems by 2020. But a recent study casts doubts over their cost-effectiveness and the benefits they bring to consumers. Smart meters record energy or water consumption, sending the readings back to the power or water suppliers for monitoring and billing. A cost-benefit analysis currently deployed in member states will be finalised by 3 September 2012. In a recommendation paper, the European Commission says it is yet to be convinced that smarts meters are “economically justified”. The EU executive's doubts are being raised despite an increased acceptance of smart meters across European countries. In Italy and Sweden, smart meters cover almost 100% of households. However, a recently published study of the Free University in Brussels (ULB) commissed by the European Consumers Organisation BEUC, found that consumers are not the main beneficiaries of this technology, calling current efforts “a missed opportunity” for end-users. “Smart meters might be beneficial to some consumers, but we certainly have doubts about whether they will be beneficial to all consumers,” Johannes Kleis of BEUC told EurActiv." http://prd34.blogspot.com/2012/07/doubts-cast-over-consumer-benefits-of.html
George Karadimas July 18, 2012 at 08:37 PM
Attention :: RESIDENTS OF MARYLAND Served by BGE The Maryland Public Service Commission, on 5/24/12, ORDERED a DEFERRAL of installation of Smart Meters on your home or business. In order to defer installation, send this NOW: Date: Sent by Certified Mail Baltimore Gas & Electric Attention: SMART GRID DEFERRAL P. O. Box 1475 Baltimore, MD 21203 NOTICE OF DEFERRAL OF INSTALLATION OF SMART METERS PER PSC’S ORDER NO. 84926 DATED MAY 24, 2012 I am hereby notifying Baltimore Gas & Electric Company and its agents (including but not limited to Grid One Solutions, Inc.) that you are NOT to install a Smart Meter anywhere on my property pursuant to Order No. 84926 issued by the Maryland Public Service Commission on May 24, 2012. Sincerely, __________________ Printed name: [insert address] cc: David Collins, Executive Secretary William Donald Schaefer Tower 6 St. Paul Street, 16th Floor Baltimore, MD 21202-6808
George Karadimas July 18, 2012 at 08:45 PM
Attention: Maryland residents that filed their opt-out with the Utility, but ended up getting a smart meter installed, contact Obi Linton "olinton@psc.state.md.us" at the PSC because it is a violation of Order #84926. And the PSC wants all order violations reported.
John Smutko July 18, 2012 at 09:39 PM
Millions of $$ are going to be spent on these smart meters, for dubious benefits. How about spending the money to bury the power lines at greatest risk of damage by falling trees. After 5 days without power from the recent storm, I think this is a better investment.
Traci M. Radice August 27, 2012 at 12:25 AM
Public Service Commission called an emergency hearing on Tues., Aug. 28th at 2pm to hear from the utilities as to their smart meter devices and their malfunctions, power surges, and fires. Any concerned citizen should plan to attend: William Donald Schaefer Tower 6 St. Paul St., 16th Floor Baltimore, MD 21202 (410) 767-8000 MD Toll Free: 1-800-492-0474 Directions to the Commission http://webapp.psc.state.md.us/intranet/AboutUs/directions_new.cfm
Traci M. Radice September 09, 2012 at 03:17 AM
did you know that Smart Meters can cause fires??? http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48949032/ns/local_news-delaware_valley_pa_nj/t/puc-calls-meeting-peco-smart-meter-vendors/ Visit www.marylandsmartmeterawareness.org for more information and if you have had ANY power surges or other electricity issues since receiving a smart meter, please contact us immediately.
Galina Zangana November 03, 2012 at 11:40 PM
Barrie Trower- former Royal Navy Microwave Weapons Expert http://geopathology-za.wikidot.com/barry-trower

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