The Long View for Smart Meters

I look at the unknown outcomes related to Smart Meters with a wary eye. I want to know why Californians have been concerned enough to ban them in one county and why Maine folks petitioned and now have the option with CMP to keep existing meters. I’m no expert on electromagnetic power and appreciate input from qualified engineers and researchers who are not connected to utility companies.

 A reader advised me that NHEC has an expensive contract with a private meter company for meter readers. Smart Meters would eliminate pollution generated by the 18 vehicles that check out 88,000 homes each month. He also saw the NP and Smart Meters as two separate issues and not part of a larger game plan. I hope he’s right.

 Another reader, an electrical engineer from VA, has a Smart Meter on his home and swears by it as a way to reduce our footprint and our electric bill when we choose to use major appliances in off peak times. Right now, it doesn’t matter when we use appliances; we’re charged by the KWH. With Smart Meters, peak hours of use will be charged more than off peak hours, so it’s a way we can use power more consciously and be charged less. Hopefully, he’s right, too.

 Re: the NP- a reader claimed that the NP was only going to use existing corridors; it was not going to take land to make a wider path. The fact is that the only way NP will put up lower towers is by widening the existing path. Otherwise, the towers may need to be 135’ high to handle the voltage so that nothing will short out.

 The glut of information on the internet can be a challenge to sift through, yet sift we must if we want to avoid more complications down the road. At a time when we more than ever need to be keeping track of changes, we are faced with research cover-ups by giant corporations intent on making money on our ignorance. It is not enough to rely on public services to carefully research the effects of their services and keep us informed.  Untoward results are suppressed or modified to promote their product.

 Ruthless disregard for the health of the general public is observed throughout the food industry, including feed practices for cattle, and additives for foods, and the drug companies’ array of  medications. As consumers, it’s difficult to know just what we are consuming. 

I can remember when the medicine cabinet at home had aspirin, mercurochrome, iodine, a roll of tape, some gauze, and a pair of tweezers. If you couldn’t solve your problems with these, you saw a doctor. Now, there’s a whole potpourri of pills and potions at the supermarket to monkey around with routinely.

 We know we have multiple health problems and we don’t know what, of all the changes in our environment, are causing them. Of special concern are the birth defects, cancers, and diabetes that are showing up in the very young. This week, we learned that Paxil is now linked to birth defects. 

Patterns in life have always fascinated me. When margarine and vitamin pills were introduced during WWII and sugar was rationed to feed the troops, kids had fewer dental cavities, and public health was generally good. Yet we went right back to increasing amounts of sugar in everything when the war ended and back to dental and general health problems.

 We’ve replaced trains with cars and trucks, and buses, thereby spawning transportation problems as costs skyrocket. Europeans can travel anywhere without a car. I can’t even buy groceries without one, much less travel to work.

 So it’s back to patterns and wondering where Smart Meters are taking us. What’s the big picture, the long range effect? I think now is a time when we need to listen carefully to each other and weigh the projected costs, not only financially, but in terms of overall, long range health. Will Smart Meters help us to stay well?

 

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