Friday, February 5, 2010

The Danger of 'Smart Meters' / Property values / Dangerous / Alarming report / Cell Phone Cigarettes

The Danger of 'Smart Meters'

See the attached 'Smartmeterreport' and the two message below -

From: Hans Karow 
Sent: 04 February 2010 02:56

Re: recent emails about smart meters

Fell free to  distribute!

As we know, in some parts of Canada smart meters  have been installed, never mind whether customers objected.

Permission was given to me from my medical doctor and EMF/EMR expert Dr. Karl Braun-von-Gladiss  (Privat-Institut für ganzheitliche Medizin, in Deutsch Evern/Lueneburg/Germany) to share the content of one of his  earlier newsletters about subject issue

Dr. Braun-von Gladiss was asking the electricity  provider whether wireless smart meters are going to be installed by all and every customers, and if so, whether customers still would have the choice for the conventional /manual reading instead of the wireless smart meter reading.

Answer of the provider:  any provider must offer each customer the digital/wireless smart meters, however the customers may decide to stay with the previous/conventional meters and phone in or email to the providers their own meter readings.

I personally find this a very good solution!

In 2008 our electricity company FORTIS BC applied for wireless smart meters.

As an intervener I addressed the EMF/EMR concern in that hearing (anybody interested, see attachments).

The regulatory agency, BC Utilities Commission, basically ignored the EMF/EMR issue.

However, and to  my surprise the Commission  denied the application "…at this time…" and in the reasoning "….the Commission is of the view that the Application and the Amended Application are incomplete and premature". Source:

My experience in  several hearings I so far was involved with,   I  assume when the application for wireless smart meters will sooner or later reopen, that the Commission  will decide for those wireless meters, and individual customers will not have the choice to stay with the with the manual-reading of the conventional/previous meters!

Another additional EMR shower in every home!




Dear Hans and everyone

Another part answer (and I agree it is only a part answer) is to install the smart meter in an external plastic box with a metal screening sheet against the house wall. That will allow remote reading with very small amounts of RF entering the house. It would be a large improvement on having the smart meter inside the house.

However, most SMART meters that I have now seen over here in the UK also have a WiFi (or z-wave or Zigbee etc) link  (i) to a remote readout for the consumer to see the amount of electricity they are using, its price per unit and the cost per minute, per hour, per day, per week and since the last bill was paid and (ii) to allow future control of heavy use appliances (like washing machines) to run them automatically when the electricity is cheapest. None of the Smart Meters that I have seen details of currently seem to be allowing a hard-wired remote unit. I suspect enough RF will come in on the mains cable that the remote readout will work if mounted close to the consumer (fuse) box.

It is a great shame (and a disaster for some people) that the industry are not designing these with hard-wired readouts.

For the link back to the main electricity network control centre, certainly in the UK, this is now most likely to be using the standard GSM or UMTS phone network - probably UMTS as the GSM system will be phased out in the next ten years or so and the meters are expected to last nearer to 30 years. The RF transmit power will be the same as a normal cellphone and will automatically adjust to the minimum needed to talk to the nearest basestation.

So the Fortis table of RF power densities are much high than they will be in normal practice. They will only be at those (whatever they are) levels during the short time your meter is talking to the phone network.

Fortis correctly state that some systems continuously transmit data. They do, but I see no chance of this happening for domestic meters - there is no way millions of meters talking continuously could be affordably carried by the existing telecomms infrastructure and there is no need for anything like continuous data. My best guess (with my ear to the ground / grapevine) of likely periodicity will be a upload of 'units consumed' once every 24 hours.

Incoming data transfer will be when the total electricity demand and availability changes significantly. For example they are talking about very expensive units from about 17:30 to 19:00 hrs UK time, as that is a time of peak demand and they wish to encourage people to minimise their use of electricity at such times by using a variable tariff.

This avoids having extra peak-load power stations on standby (expensive and unecological) and the building of more long-distance high-power powerlines.

Smart meters will come and come soon. We need to try to get them more ES people-friendly.

We do need to keep the RF out of our houses. However, in towns and cities I believe that Smart Meters will make very little difference to the pulsing microwave soup that we are already exposed to. In central London average street levels have risen from around 0.1 V/m ten years ago to 2 to 4 V/m in 2009 (I often walk around carrying a meter - used to be a Gigahertz Solutions HFE35 but now I prefer the Acoustimeter that I designed [fyi: ] to see the pulsed and average levels). That is an average power density increase of about 500-fold. A once-per-day upload of data for a second or two will make virtually no difference to the average level which are primarily dominated by the excessive use of mobile phones by the general population and the base stations that support their use.

Best wishes



I recently moved into a house 40 minutes out of Vancouver that is on 1.5 acres of land - I came here to escape the dense electrosmog (cell antennae, Wi-Fi, DECT) in my apartment and neighbourhood that was 10 minutes from downtown Vancouver.

Shortly after my move, I noticed that the electric meter on the house was digital, but didn't give it a second thought. After receiving a link to a picture of one of the latest "Wi-Max" meters in a recent email, and noticing the similarity in appearance, I began to wonder if the meter on my house was a smart meter (although my meter did not say "Wi-Max" on it).

Link to the  photo:

I contacted the person at BC Hydro who could give me information on the upcoming rollout of smart meters. She said that the rollout has not started yet but there was a pilot project in the past year or so and a handful of houses have been outfitted with smart meters - she speculated that maybe my house was participating in the pilot project. I explained to her that I am electrosensitive and that having a smart meter near my bedroom and my childrens bedrooms was of great concern to me - that like many others with ES, my life has been seriously impacted by exposure to EMFs.

She called me back yesterday and informed me that I definitely do NOT have a smart meter (much to my relief) and that what I have is a mechanical meter with a digital readout.

What I found quite surprising was that she said that BC Hydro would accommodate those sensitive to EMF's by locating the smart meters on a different part of the client's property away from the house, and would even shield the back the meter with a metal plate to block the waves.

It's quite clear that placing simple metal shielding on the back of a smart meter won't effectively mitigate the microwaves. I have experimented with an electrosmog detector, a Wi-Fi router and a large piece of tin foil and found that the only thing that completely blocked the Wi-Fi was wrapping the electrosmog meter inside the tin foil.

On a positive note, I found this person to be quite empathetic and aware of electrosensitivity as a health issue. That said, it doesn't look like that awareness is going to stop the rollout of smart meters in BC in the coming years.



Cell towers don't affect property values, says researcher (?)

By Christopher Adams

3:45 PM Friday Feb 5, 2010

Nearby cellphone towers have no effect on property values, says a study conducted by an Auckland academic.

Olga Filippova, a property lecturer at the University of Auckland, focused her study on 3126 homes sold across four Auckland regions - Manukau, Auckland City, Waitakere and the North Shore.

The study took place between January 2005 and December 2007, and compared their Quotable Value NZ sale prices to their proximity to 46 cell phone towers.

All the 3126 homes were all located within 500 metres of cell phone towers, with the study divided into 50m increments.

"Sales that were close to the towers had no significant price impact," Filippova said.

Filippova said she was surprised by the results of the study, as she had been expecting to find that proximity to cell phone towers would affect the value of homes.

"I was surprised given that past research found that there was a negative impact [on values]," she said.

Filippova presented her findings at last month's Pacific Rim Real Estate Conference.

Her findings will be peer reviewed within the next two months, she said, and will then be submitted to an international property journal.

She said homeowners with houses located near cell phone towers may get some relief from her findings.

"There are different concerns that are associated with cell phone towers," she said. "Of course there is health risk and visual impact."

Manukau City Councillor Sharon Stewart, who has been fighting the construction of cell towers in residential areas for 12 years, was surprised to learn of the results of Filippova's study.

"Real Estate agents are telling us that it's very hard to get anyone to hop out of the car and have a look at a house that's got a cell phone tower in front of it," she said.

Greg Roy, a real estate agent and director of Total Focus Property, said 40 per cent of would-be house buyers were put off by homes being located close to cell phone towers.

"I would say that you would be looking at a 10 to 30 per cent drop in value [if a home is located near a tower]," he said.

Roy said two recent deals his company dealt with had "fallen over" because of the potential for cell phone towers to be built in front of the homes.

"They are not on the market anymore," he said. "They've been taken off."

By Christopher Adams

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Cellphones May Be Dangerous to Your Health

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Yesterday I had lunch with a friend in the medical profession. We got to talking about the effects on society of digital technology. I shared with him my funny sci-fi idea: "Wouldn't it be weird," I said, "if we found out that the microwaves emitted from our cellphones and wireless technology had a bad effect on our health? Man, that would change everything, wouldn't it?! Kind of like the thesis in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein."

Then my friend replied, "Funny you should mention that." Watch out when someone says that. He said he'd just read an article in GQ, a fine, scholarly journal I have been known to read at the barber's. It pretty much alleged the same thing. Here's the link so you can read it yourself:

He also mentioned that since reading the article, he'd shut off the wi-fi in his house and only uses a wired earpiece when speaking on his cellphone. This is a sane, level-headed doc. It's given me pause. And it may be bumming me out. After all, I'm an iPhone afficionado now! Read the article and let me know what you think!

posted by Carl Hofmann


Alarming report: cell/wifi frequencies and your health

Feb.04, 2010

I was in Walgreens last night waiting for traffic to die down when I opened the current issue of GQ magazine. I found an article in it called, Warning: Your Cell Phone May Be Hazardous to Your Health.

I was disturbed by the science behind the article. I think this is a must read for many of us who are attached to our cell phones, have WiFi networks in home and/or live near high power lines. Time will tell, and probably in the upcoming few years if radio frequencies can in deed harm human DNA. Or, at the least, cause the DNA to mutate, causing potential cancer and other health risks.

Sample: Snip-its I found interesting. Please read the full article to get more of the science. I personally find the politics more interesting. After all, the entire wireless business revenue is well into the hundreds of billions a year.

Carl Blackman believes "a decision was made to stop the civilian agencies from looking too deeply into the nonthermal health effects from exposure to EM fields. Scientists who have shown such effects over the years have been silenced, had funding taken away, been laughed at, been called charlatans and con men. The goal was to only let in scientists who would say, 'We know that microwave ovens can cook meat, and that's all we need to know.' " One veteran EPA physicist, speaking anonymously, told me, "The Department of Defense didn't like our research because the exposure limits that we might recommend would curtail their activities."

Here, in the U.S., there's been very little resistance to the march of the cell towers. In fact, in Congress there's been almost nothing but support. The Telecommunications Act of 1996—a watershed for the cell-phone industry—was the result, in part, of nearly $50 million in political contributions and lobbying largesse from the telecom industry. The prize in the TCA for telecom companies branching into wireless was a rider known as Section 704, which specifically prohibits citizens and local governments from stopping placement of a cell tower due to health concerns. Section 704 was clear: There could be no litigation to oppose cell towers because the signals make you sick.

When President Bill Clinton signed the TCA into law in February 1996, the rollout of "personal communication services," marketed as PCS, was in full swing. By the end of the year, telecom companies had paid the federal government more than $8 billion to purchase portions of the microwave-frequency sequence. (According to the FCC, fees paid for allocation of spectrum as of 2009 amounted to $52 billion.) Almost immediately, cell-phone antennas sprang up across the country, appearing on church steeples and apartment buildings, in parks and along highways, on streetlights and clock towers and flagpoles. One industry estimate tallied 19,850 such installations in the U.S. in 1995. Today there are 247,000, most hosting multiple antennas.

Modern society, needless to say, is in the grip of wireless technology. All you have to do to understand this is step outside your door. "It just so happens," Frey had told me, "that the frequencies and modulations of our cell phones seem to be the frequencies that humans are particularly sensitive to. If we had looked into it a little more, if we had done the real science, we could have allocated spectrums that the body can't feel. The public should know if they are taking a risk with cell phones. What we're doing is a grand world experiment without informed consent."

I pray that the science behind this is wrong. I pray in the long run us who use cell phones everyday, live in our WiFi networks and work in cities engulfed in wireless technology remain healthy. But, there is little doubt that we can do things everyday to help limit our exposure. For example, put your cell phone down instead of carrying it on your hip. Or, don't live near large power lines, or turn off your WiFi network when it is not needed. Still, living near a town or city will forever expose you to these frequencies. And whether we like it or not, cell phones today are a part of live and a must for business.

-Adam Faragalli


Cell Phones are the Cigarettes of the 21st Century Video: Cell Phones are the Cigarettes of the 21st Century

Shocking similarities between these two pernicious destroyers of human health.


Power lines pose cancer risk

High voltage electric supply transformers located near residential areas, schools or public places can pose serious health hazards. The situation is getting worse day by day in Mauritius where construction  sites have mushroomed in areas where such transformers are found, according to many observers.

Leading scientists and researchers around the world who deal with health hazards associated with electric supply systems believe there is a need for an urgent rethinking on the presence of high voltage power lines near houses and schools.

A three-year study by the American National Council for Radiation Protection shows that there is clear evidence that living near an electricity line could be linked to fatal childhood diseases such as Leukaemia.

A draft major report  recommends firm restrictions at 0.2 microTesla, an indicative level of public concern.

A Japanese study by Saito et al published in The  Journal of Epidemiology 2009 reveals  an eleven-fold increase in brain tumours for children exposed to magnetic field.

However, Dr.Anil Mohit, Cancer Specialist at the Mauritian Ministry of Health says: "I am not aware of any studies done in Mauritius regarding the risks taken when exposed to power lines. I believe there have been many scientists who have investigated this probability in the UK and the US but I have nothing to say regarding the health of the nation when exposed to electromagnetic field (EMF) ."

Meanwhile, parents, teachers and students of  a State Secondary School

in Ebène are concerned  about the  risk they are likely to be exposed to because of  a high voltage power line that is found  right in front of the school.
The school management even expressed its fear to the authorities when the school was built  in 2003-2004.

"The President of the PTA asked about the safety of the students if exposed to these power lines at the time of construction but the contractors said that there would be no risk at all.

Yet several parents have expressed their concern regarding the threats of being exposed to the power line. The management at the time lodged a complaint to the Central Electricity Board (CEB), and people concerned came to the conclusion that it would cost too much to transfer the pylon elsewhere," says an officer at the school.

The Chairman of the CEB, Patrick Assirvaden, says: "There are criteria to be respected before putting up an electric  pylon . I am not aware of any threats when people are exposed to these power lines on a long-run."

Patrick was unable to give  information regarding the distance that needs to be respected when pylons are placed near houses and schools and other institutions.

"Before transferring any electric pylon, the CEB needs to seek advice from other authorities and the cost of transfer may vary between Rs 200, 000 and Rs 500, 000 depending on the distance. Before erecting any pylons, the CEB takes the safety measures into consideration. However, I am unable to comment on the health safety of people, regarding the risk of cancer when exposed to electromagnetic fields," says the CEB officer.


Britannia Radio
By Britannia Radio

France has just passed a law stopping the advertising of cell phones to children; In Sweden EMF sensitivity (Electro-magnetic radiation) is recognized as a disability and the government will paint your house with anti-radiation paint if you need it. ... Despite all the evidence of the harmful effects of radiation, the WHO (The World Health Organization, not the band) have stated that "there are no known adverse health effects from low level, long term exposure". ...
Britannia Radio -