Smart Meters: Don’t be Fooled. No Real Benefits, Incalculable Risks Pt 2

Published July 20, 2015

ComEd is in the process of installing 4,000,000 “Smart Meters” across the state of Illinois. Traditional analog electric meters are being replaced. Featured in Part 1 was a CUBFacts informational sheet on which CUB’s misleading statements were followed each time by an expert’s explanation.

The health effects and safety violations continue to be reported in the U.S. and in other nations. After reading this article, even the most skeptical individuals might come to a realization that Smart Meters are definitely NOT the innocent devices that the public has been told to accept.  

Ronald M. Powell, Ph. D., revisited

One respected and knowledgeable professional already cited in Part 1, is Ronald M. Powell, Ph.D., who as a retired career U.S. Government scientist holds a Ph.D. in Physics from Harvard University.  During his Government career, Dr. Powell worked for the Executive Office of the President, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.  

As a follow up on Part 1, Dr. Powell maintains: 

Wherever these meters are installed, they threaten the health of all residents in the community, violate their privacy, increase the likelihood of hacking, decrease their personal security and safety, and threaten property values in the community. And Wireless Smart Meters do all of this without any persuasive evidence of any financial benefit to the customers. All of these consequences are important for consumers; but the health threat is particularly tragic.

Note: Utility propaganda combines benefits of Smart Grid and Smart Meters together; don’t be fooled.  Much of Smart Grid is beneficial but Smart Meters cost a fortune, provide no net benefit for consumers and pose immediate and long-term threats to our health. NStar of Massachusetts states: “there is no rational basis for the implementation of AMI (Smart Meters).”

In other words, there are little, if any, benefits for the consumer and incalculable risks for residents and their families. 

Making a Strong Case Against Smart Meters

The following is cited in a document by Dr. Powell, “The Health Argument for Replacing Wireless Smart Meters with a Safe Metering Technology”, which makes a strong case against the use of wireless Smart Meters:

Some of the biological effects of exposure to RF radiation can be readily sensed (the “symptoms”).  Other biological effects cannot be readily sensed, at least not until an advanced state of harm has been reached.  Unfortunately, you can be harmed by the latter even when you are free of the ‘symptoms.'” . . . literature reviews indicate that some groups of individuals are at especially high risk of harm from exposure to RF radiation:  pregnant women and their unborn children, very young children, teenagers, men of reproductive age, seniors, and anyone with a chronic health condition. 

Every resident in a community is irradiated by every Wireless Smart Meter in that community, just to varying degrees. Each Wireless Smart Meter near to a given resident produces more radiation in his home than each Wireless Smart Meter farther away. (This is because exposure drops off with distance.) But there are so many more Wireless Smart Meters that are farther away that, together, they count, too. For example, in my community there are 14,000 Wireless Smart Meters installed on our homes. Together, they issue an average of 140 million pulses of RF radiation every day, up to a maximum of 2.7 billion pulses per day. There is now no place in our community where a resident can go where he is not near to many Wireless Smart Meters and within reach of so many more Wireless Smart Meters that are farther away.

Consider the health impact from 4,000,000 Smart Meters issuing pulses of RF radiation each day, forever. If you live in Illinois in the territory serviced by ComEd, this is what you can expect. In addition, RF radiation exposures add together. Many small exposures from Smart Meter emissions can add up to a significant amount of exposure which is cumulative, building up over time. 

An additional fact worth noting: “The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) a part of the World Health Organization has classified wireless devices including Smart Meters as a Class 2B Carcinogen.” There are many health professionals (some from the original IARC committee) who think enough evidence exists now to have Smart Meters classified as a 2A probable Carcinogen. Either way, that makes this the first time in history that a possible Carcinogen has been mandated on ALL homes and buildings being serviced by an electric utility.

Dr. Powell has written this very important article, The Impact of Wireless Technology on Our Childrenwhich was published on Sept. 14, 2014. It is extremely timely, as more and more children are being subjected to the RF/microwave radiation from wireless devices. However, those devices are voluntary and can be switched off when not in use. By contrast, Smart Meters are mandatory and can never be turned off. 

While the health consequences of exposure to RF/microwave radiation are vitally important to people of all ages, those consequences are especially serious for children. They are the most vulnerable to harm, they will have to live the longest with the harm, and they are not yet in a position to defend themselves.

This risk is well documented in the archival published literature from the international biomedical research community, certainly more than enough to evoke the Precautionary Principle to protect our children.

Dr. David O. Carpenter, edited updated 2012 BioIniative Report

Another Smart Meter expert is Dr. David O. Carpenter. He is Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany and Professor of Environmental Health Sciences at the School of Public Health. Dr. Carpenter received his MD degree from Harvard Medical School, has more than 300 peer-reviewed publications, and testified at the President’s Council on Cancer. He is known in professional circles all over the world for his view that Smart Meters represent a real threat to the health of utility customers.  He was the leader of a group of 45 doctors and scientists who signed the “Toronto Statement” warning of the dangers of Smart Meters in 2012.  Dr. Carpenter edited the original (2007) and the updated 2012 BioIniative Report comprised of a review of 1,800 peer-reviewed studies indicating harm from RF/microwave radiation at levels far below FCC guidelines. 

From the BioInitiative Report Update:  

Sometimes, science does not keep pace with new environmental exposures and the deployment runs ahead of knowledge of health risks. That is the case for Electromagnetic Fields and RF radiation in the BioInitiative report. The report underscores the critical need to face difficult questions, make mid-course corrections, try to repair the damage already done in this generation, and to think about protecting future generations. As there is now much more evidence of risks to health, the status quo is not acceptable in light of the evidence for harm.”

Significant statements by Dr. Carpenter include:

With Smart Meters:  The first cause of harm is the pulse modulation of the microwave radio carrier. My concern is that Smart Meters use multiple very high intensity pulses. The pulses are very brief, but they are extremely high intensity. There is a building body of evidence that these transients with several rises and falls, especially at high intensity, are much more dangerous than a steady sine wave which is what you think of with Electromagnetic Fields.

There are an enormous number of reports of people becoming ill after a Smart Meter was installed on their house, and that is because there is something particularly harmful about the high intensity pulses. Smart meters will adversely impact about 5% of the population almost immediately following installation, and are likely to cause cancers or neurological illnesses in the long run for a much larger share of the public. 

There is no evidence that anyone is immune to the cancer risk from wireless. We do not yet know the causes of cancer although we know a lot about cancer. Some argue that the associations that we see in human health studies between exposure to RF radiation and elevated risk of cancer should be ignored simply because we do not know all of the mechanisms. That is totally inappropriate because not knowing all the mechanisms is also true for smoking and lung cancer, true for environmental exposures to chemicals, and true for various cancers that arise.

Dr. Carpenter goes on to say that as a nation, “We should be regulating on the basis of those that are most vulnerable. And by far, infants and children are the most vulnerable.” 

Other Experts on Smart Meter Research: Dr. Martin Blank and Dr. Magda Havas   

Along with Dr. Ronald Powell and Dr. David Carpenter is Dr. Martin Blank introducing The International EMF Scientist Appeal signed by 190 scientists from 39 nations. These scientists have collectively published over 2,000 peer-reviewed papers on the biological or health effects RF radiation. Dr. Blank has had over 30 years of experience conducting EMF research at Columbia University and is a past president of the International Bioelectromagnetics Society. Dr. Blank gives a compelling explanation of the major health crisis we are facing due to increasing levels of environmental pollution from growing and expanding EMF sources. 

While viewing the video, consider the added RF radiation exposure that will blanket Illinois from the installation of 4,000,000 Smart Meters. And be cognizant of the fact that CUB and ComEd are using propaganda to fool you into believing that Smart Meters are necessary, beneficial, and safe.

The following quote is from Dr. Magda Havas, Associate Professor of Environmental & Resource Studies at Trent University. Dr. Havas received her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto and completed Post-Doctoral research at Cornell University:

What do you do when you see a disaster looming and those who have the power to prevent it refuse to listen, when those with a financial interest attack by producing false information and twisting the truth, and then attempt to discredit those who are sounding the alarm? 

What do you do when you see the time bomb ticking and those who can defuse it refuse to act? If Smart Meters are placed on every home, they will then contribute significantly to our exposure and this is both unwise and unsafe. This is where we are today with Smart Meters that have proven to be harmful to our health and the environment.

[Originally published at Illinois Review]