CITIZENS PLEAD WITH BCUC TO TURN DOWN FORTISBC SMART METER APPLICATION

By on November 14, 2012

Three commissioners with the B.C. Utilities Commission (BCUC) heard last week that allowing companies like FortisBC to introduce smart meters “in the amoral search for increased profits”, while risking human health must be stopped.
Joan Moffet of Penticton, who worked as a physical therapist for more than four decades and has a Masters Degree in Education, made one of the most impassioned presentations during one of two public hearings held at the Spirit Ridge Spa and Resort last Wednesday.
The BCUC is the independent government agency that will make the final decision on whether or not to grant a license that would allow FortisBC to proceed with its advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) – more commonly recognized as smart meters – project to customers in the South Okanagan.
“I ask that these things never be considered for installation,” said Moffet to BCUC commissioners Norman MacMurchy, Len Kelsey and David Morton.
A group of 30 area residents attended an afternoon session before the BCUC commissioners, while another 30 attended the evening session.
There wasn’t a single presentation made in favour of the FortisBC application throughout the public hearings in Osoyoos.

During more than a dozen presentations by members of the public, each and every one of them detailed their fear relating to the effects of electro-magnetic radiation (EMR) emitted by these devices, with several presenters giving personal anecdotes about how they believe wireless devices have already compromised their personal health.
Kelsey told the audience that these public hearings are a key part of the process in determining whether or not the BCUC will grant or deny the FortisBC application to bring smart meters to its thousands of customers in the Southern Interior.
“We must make a decision on all of the evidence presented … nothing more and nothing less,” said Kelsey. “These public input sessions are all part of the evidence we will be considering.”
In order to present submissions, members of the public had to be customers of FortisBC and presentations were limited to a maximum of 15 minutes.
Moffet said “any Grade 10 high school physics teacher” would confirm there are serious risks to human health whenever an EMR signal is emitting a constant signal 24 hours a day.
The only reason FortisBC is making this application is to try and increase corporate profits and it’s up to the BCUC to make the right call and deny the application, said Moffet.
“I wish it wasn’t this way (trying to increase profits) in this province, in this country or in the world, but we all know this isn’t the case,” she said.
The radiation generated by smart meters has caused irreparable damage to the physiology of human beings, animals and all life forms, she said.
Canada is a democratic country where people have the right to protect private property and companies like FortisBC should not be allowed to force customers to use these devices against their will, said Moffet.
“Our choice is removed when wireless technology is imposed on us,” she said. “There is no reason great enough to jeopardize the health of the general population.”
Many people who made presentations at the hearings were speaking about the negative impact of all wireless devices on their personal health, but this meeting was about the BCUC having the power to deny FortisBC’s application to install smart meters and the commissioners have a moral obligation to do the right thing and reject the request, said Moffet.
“Smart meters may be very small in the pile of wireless devices out there … but these meters are under your jurisdiction,” she said.
Judy Nicholas of Oliver, who has founded an organization called the Smart Meter Awareness Group, told the commissioners she worked as a laboratory technologist for more than 20 years and is convinced constant exposure to EMR signals are the biggest reason she had to quit her job and has had suffered numerous serious health problems.
“In a sense, I was a lab specimen,” said Nicholas, talking about working around EMR signals for more than two decades.
A physician in Vancouver diagnosed her many medical problems as being directly related to her job and the doctor said workers compensation claims suggesting EMR exposure were causing health problems were automatically rejected by the province, said Nicholas.
“I worked in a high EMR environment … and I got sick because I couldn’t fight the big fight any longer,” she said.
She contracted viral mononucleosis several years ago, which started a tailspin of serious health problems, she said.
“It took me six months to realize my symptoms were caused by my workplace environment,” she said.
She still suffers from a “constant and continual burning sensation” over many parts of her body and has little stamina or strength, she said.
The effects of smart meters and many other wireless devices are going to increase, in her opinion, which gives her great concern for the health and wellbeing of her children and grandchildren, said Nicholas.
If the FortisBC application is approved, she will sell her home and move to another location where smart meters aren’t allowed, said Nicholas.
“I will have to move … I won’t accept smart meters,” she said.
Susan Zita of Oliver told the commissioners she suffers from Multiple Sclerosis and she’s worried smart meters will negatively affect her health.
“There is no proof smart meters are safe,” she said. “I have MS and I want to stay healthy. I’m afraid my child is going to be negatively affected by EMR.”
Charlotte Burbeck of Oliver said she doesn’t allow any wireless devices in her home and she doesn’t believe companies like FortisBC should be allowed to force her to use a smart meter if she doesn’t want to.
“I feel we should have the right to say no,” she said.
Skip King of Oliver said utility companies should be looking at safe alternatives like using fibre optics instead of pulsing devices that emit a constant EMR signal.
The current analog meters used by Canadians for years work just fine and there’s simply no need to allow these smart meters into this area, he said.
Reports that electricity bills have skyrocketed in jurisdictions where smart meters have been installed is also very worrisome, said King.
Kelsey ended the hearing by saying all of the presentations will be carefully considered by the BCUC before a final decision is rendered in the coming months.
Written submissions are also considered and are still being accepted, he said.

15 Comments

  1. BillB

    November 14, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    Tellus – The Future is Chemotherapy…

  2. Sharon

    November 14, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    What a sad state when we must beg not to have our homes invaded against our will. There are 1000s of studies demonstrating how microwave radiation exposure, even at low levels, affects bodies. The classification of RF radiation as a 2b carcinogen (same as DDT and lead) means this is not safe. When before has a government ever forced its citizens to use a dangerous product? What is democratic about this? And there are no benefits, no reduction in energy usage or costs — that’s consistent everywhere smart meters have been installed, as reported by industry’s Electric Power Research Institute.

  3. Serge

    November 15, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Thank you Sharon for all your hard work in fighting for all. Industry’s greed has no conscience.

  4. Bill

    November 15, 2012 at 10:20 pm

    RF radiation is given off by all things electrical. It’s the level that is relevant. When microwave ovens first came out the same backlash occurred. Everyone thought they would be poisoned or all come down with cancer.
    The experts said none of that would happen …and they were right non of the bad things did happen. Eventually we came to accept microwave ovens and they became a positive thing….

  5. James G Smith

    November 16, 2012 at 11:27 am

    BCUC does NOT act independently as we are often lead to believe– that was proven when the Liberal government over-ruled the BCUC recommendation to raise rates even higher than the most recent increase.

    We DO NOT live in a democratic country and it will be both shocking and surprising if the BCUC rules against Fortis. The government will force them to do otherwise.

    In the event that BCUC does not shock and surprise, we can force the government to respond via a Citizens’ Initiative. Please add your name to the data base at StopSmartMeters.ca

  6. michael

    November 16, 2012 at 11:57 pm

    does anyone know how much cumulative radiation we can tolerate? a microwave is one, radiowaves how many?, cell waves how many? now all appliances and energy meter radiating strong pulses of short distance. we have only really adapted to/evolved with earth and cosmic energies if we believe in concept of real time.
    michael hollihn
    healthy eco-house designer/builder

  7. michael

    November 17, 2012 at 12:21 am

    i should have said actual/objective time.

    whenever two sizeable bodies of scientists directly oppose each other, go for the body that does not stand financial gain in any way directly or indirectly.

    i’m sorry i missed the meeting…wanted to be there…cell regeneration ability and even cell structure is negatively affected by the cumulative effects of many current technologies

    thanks again…i will go off the grid if i have to forcefully accept a smart meter and smart radiation emitters in all of my appliances…too much radiation of harmful waves exposed to our developing children and mothers to be…

    this is a karmic bubble about to burst…it’s time for us to go off the grid dependence an wait until there is a progressive, sustainable, and healthy grid to contribute to…

    a diversified utility is a strong utility

  8. michael hollihn

    November 19, 2012 at 7:54 am

    shouldn’t it be mentioned that it is classified as a carcinogen in the same class as DDT and Lead?

    does anyone know how much cumulative radiation we can tolerate? a microwave is one, radiowaves how many?, cell waves how many? now all appliances and energy meter radiating strong pulses of short distance. we have only really adapted to/evolved with earth and cosmic energies if we believe in concept of actual/objective time with egoic mindsets.

    whenever two sizeable bodies of scientists directly oppose each other, go for the body that does not stand financial gain in any way directly or indirectly.

    i’m sorry i missed the meeting (osoyoos)…wanted to be there…cell regeneration ability and even cell structure is negatively affected by the cumulative effects of many current technologies…the cumulative effects are now starting to show themselves pretty obviously in growth in allergies and chronic diseases

    thanks again…i will go off the grid if i have to forcefully accept a smart meter and smart radiation emitters in all of my appliances…too much radiation of harmful waves exposed to our developing children and mothers to be…

    this is a karmic bu”bble about to burst…it’s time for us to go off the grid dependence and wait until there is a progressive, sustainable, and healthy grid to contribute to…

    a diversified utility is a strong utility

    my opa, oma, father and his sisters fled this type of forceful ego mania 60 years ago…who’s running this country?

    we CAN build healthy houses built with materials within 100km of our building sites…our comforts will still be there, they will just look a little different…wool sweaters and tea is part of the utility :)

    michael hollihn
    healthy eco-house designer/builder”

  9. Art Tricque

    November 19, 2012 at 8:33 am

    «Moffet said “any Grade 10 high school physics teacher” would confirm there are serious risks to human health whenever an EMR signal is emitting a constant signal 24 hours a day.»
    Quite the opposite: any Grade 10 physics teacher would tell you that microwaves are non-ionizing radiation, and they they do not have enough energy to cause any harm.

  10. Kim

    November 20, 2012 at 10:47 am

    Bravo, Micheal H! Well put. I (and many of my friends) do not use microwaves. This is our CHOICE. If Fortis shows up with their whites trucks with their happy little packaged meters for installation (which only last about 5 years as they are plastic, our old workhorse analog meters last 35 years) against our will and trespass on our properties…well now, that’s the beginning of the end for us as Canadians. I for one, do not want to live in a totalitarian society.
    Stay off my lawn!

  11. Rick

    November 26, 2012 at 4:45 pm

    No problem, want to put a SmartMeter(surveillance device) on my home the monthly charge for such information is equal to the month’s consumption plus a small administration fee of 25% of the month’s consumption.
    Additionally Fortis assumes liability for costs of any health problems developed from the installation of the SmartMeter and warrants to indemnify all health facilities and pharmacies and all other health providers necessary to deal with the illness caused. Onus is on Fortis to prove the illness was not caused by the SmartMeter.

  12. Michelle Brittany

    April 24, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    Smart meters suck,, get rid of them.

  13. J. Scott Storle

    April 25, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Anyone noticed that the battle cry of the Liberal Party of BC is energy. Why? Well, I think that the decisions of the BCUC have shown the way. Fortis and BC Hydro have found a new way to allow big business to flourish by putting control gadgets that are unhealthy in or near our homes. No matter what the scientists ( that are not on the payroll) say about the ill effects of such gadgetry(smart meters, etc.)

    Wake up everyone, now is the time to get rid of the big business controlled Liberal Party and at the same time Fortis high rates, Vote Vote Vote!

  14. mke

    April 29, 2013 at 8:28 am

    So how does a smart meter’s power output compare to other ordinary devices in the same power range? Well, first of all, a smart meter is almost never transmitting anything at all. Ours transmit for a total of about one minute a day, about .07% of the time. During those brief pulses, standing two feet away from the smart meter while it’s transmitting exposes you to:

    About half of what you’d get in a Starbuck’s with Wi-Fi
    About half of using laptop computer
    Less than 2% of what you’d get using the most powerful walkie-talkie
    Less than 1/3 of what you’d get holding the most powerful cell phone to your head
    Or about .002 of what you’d get putting your face 2 inches from a running microwave oven.

    None of those far more powerful devices has ever caused a problem, nor should we expect them to. Radio, usually considered to be that part of the electromagnetic spectrum ranging from about 3 KHz to about 300 GHz, is way below the energy levels (no matter the intensity) of ionizing radiation, which is the point at which radiation is energetic enough to strip electrons and cause molecular damage. This range begins at around 1 PHz (petahertz).

  15. John

    November 7, 2013 at 2:08 am

    Just so happens the smart meter would have been 4-5 feet from my 3 year old son’s head where he sleeps. I don’t know how safe it is to be honest but as a responsible father I have to decline and pay a ludicrous $35 a month to keep it as it is.

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