The CPUC has issued their proposed rulings (to be voted upon in April) for opting out of a Smart Meter for both San Diego Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison. Both proposals are similar to PG&E’s, with the utilities charging 75 dollars upfront and 10 dollars monthly, in order for customers to keep what they already have, which some people have said is like being double charged. However, the SCE proposal does not allow customers who currently have a digital non smart meter to choose an analog meter. They may, the SCE proposed ruling states, only “retain the meter currently installed at their location or receive the meter form (i.e., an analog meter or a non-analog, non-smart digital meter) that had been at the customer’s location prior to the installation of a wireless smart meter.”
A “digital non smart meter” also emits RF radiation (though not, like smart meters in a “mesh” network; instead the meter is read by the utility from a truck or the sidewalk). Some people have suffered health effects from this type of meter, such as shattering of the ear drum from the pulses. SCE should be doing what the other two utilities are doing and offering the analog meter option to all its customers.
See also this article by Sue Brinchman in Le Mesa Patch about the SDG&E Opt Out Proposal.
Perhaps there is a misunderstanding about the digital “non smart meters”.
In our area, PG&E has offered digital Time Of Use (TOU) meters to residential customers for about 25 years. An E6/E7 TOU meter looks like a new smart meter, but has no transmitter and must be read manually by a meter reader. These meters have been offered to customers who can chose an E6 rate schedule, and these meters are capable of bi-directional electricity monitoring and recording (unlike the simple smart meters). It is people that have solar systems that are tied to the electric power grid. During the day, the solar panels generate most of the electricity, often times when people are not home to use it. So, the excess generated electricity from the solar panels is inverted to AC and fed back to the power grid. This excess electricity is fed back at a higher rate, and then at night the rates are lower when people come home and use the power.
Here in PG&E territory, the utility is forbidden to replace an E6 TOU meter with a smart meter. With a smart meter, the customers can not get any credit for electricity being backfed to the power grid.
There are advanced AMI meters available for use with solar systems, but they cost the customer $5000+ and need a broadband cable or mobile service to communicate usage data. The Silver Springs Networks radio “smart grid” will not handle advanced meter functions.
What the utilities sold us was an obsolete electric meter and communication system that does not support new emerging technologies like renewable generation and electric vehicle (E9) meters.
We have been royally ripped of by “SmartMeter and the smart grid projects. The sole purpose of the SmartMeter project is to automate meter reading and eliminate jobs, that’s all folks.
The digital non smart meter is not the solar meter that you refer to, but rather a meter which emits RF and also has “dirty electricity” issues. This is how one person who had this installed on her home described it: “The dangerous SMPS [Switch Mode Power Supply] in utility meters is not only causing “dirty electricity” or “transient frequencies” to be transmitted and radiated through electrical wiring but it is also causing RF radiation to be transmitted and radiated through wiring. Basically, these meters are causing a toxic soup of Rf and EMF radiation. This is all being transmitted on wiring but it is also being radiated throughout homes and neighborhoods because it is not contained.”
Two people I have discussed this with recently have talked about this type of meter causing them to become electro-hyper-sensitive and both described issues with piercing pain to their ears.
Your points about the smart meters not being compatible with solar is another mark against the smart meters.
That’s also interesting you say that they won’t support electric vehicles–because the CPUC just had a workshop where they discussed third party vendors or service providers (such as for electric vehicles) having access to smart meters. I didn’t read the document carefully–but there would also be a whole new layer of charges (junk fees, people might call them) for the rate payers.
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