Say No to Smart Meters in Victoria - Overcharging, Rip Offs, Smart Meter Problems
Smart meters: a dumb idea. Brought to you by the Brumby Government, kept by the do-nothing Baillieu Government.
See also: Smart Meter Explosions
Around 2009, electricity companies started replacing electricity meters with new 'Smart Meters' in Australian homes and businesses.
What can the electricity supply companies do with these 'Smart Meters'?
Electricity companies are able to impose different tariffs at different times of day. This could mean they charge more for peak times, leading to higher electricity bills. Electricity companies are able to remotely 'read' the meter through electronic means. This could cause RFI (radio frequency interference) to radio equipment. They also save on the costs of having personnel manually read the meters. Electricity suppliers can use the meters' built-in switching to remotely turn the power on or off to a premises.
Not environmently friendly
The new smart meters are fully electronic. That is, they use an electronic means of sensing the wattage (current and voltage) flowing through them. There is a microchip to analyse the data, an LCD to show the kilowatt hours, and a transmitter/receiver radio circuit for remote meter reading and control. The electronics in the smart meters use more electricity than analogue meters. When no electricity is consumed in the house, analogue meters don't spin and hence consume no power. Smart meters constantly draw a small amount of power to keep themselves operating. There is simply no benefit to consumers or the environment.
Not to mention the greenhouse gases generated in order to implement these 'dumb meters'. The factory manufacturing the meters will produce emissions. The personnel who will be driving to every home and business to install the meters will also emit carbon monoxide from their vehicles. And lastly, the old meters must be disposed of. Even recycling them requires energy. So why not leave the old meters in place and save the environment?
Comsumers are reporting of electricity bills rising two to threefold since their smart meter was installed. In effect, consumers are financing these new smart meters. It is absurd how suppliers will be reaping huge revenue increases from the peak usage tariffs, and yet pass the installation costs onto the end user. In fact, it is extremely unfair because the meter is owned by the electricity company and not the homeowner, yet it is the homeowner who ultimately pays for it.
Customers on pensions and the elderly stand to be most disadvantaged from the smart meters. These are the customers that will use most of their electricity during peak times, when suppliers will have a higher tariff in place.
Being 'Green' (Solar) doesn't help
If you thought that installing photovoltaic (PV) solar power panels would cut your power costs in the long run, think again. When you have PV installed, you have no choice but to have a smart meter installed. The smart meter adds further to the cost of the PV installation, and this is often not included in quotes by the PV installation companies.
And as mentioned earlier, pensioners would also not benefit from this. Any power generated by your PV system that is exported back to the grid is considered income. Yes, this is income that would reduce any pension or elegible government allowance.
Government damage control
Whatever advantages claimed by the government has not got anyone convinced.
Currently, governments claim the tariff system is not currently in effect for those with smart meters. This is merely an election ploy; an effort to prevent damage until after the election. Afterwards, there is nothing stopping the government or electricity companies from charging higher tariffs during peak electricity usage periods.
Causes Radio Frequency Interference and Radiation
Some people who have had a smart meter installed have reported that after their remote control systems were activated, interference to radio ensued. It is described as a pulsating noise, and has reportedly caused wideband interference, where the noise could be heard throughout the FM broadcast band.
Others have reported in forums where smart meters using the 2.4GHz ISM band (to communicate with the suppliers) are causing interference to other devices using the same band. They can cause problems with WiFi computer networks, bluetooth devices and AV senders that use the 2.4GHz band. With a smart meter in every house, neighbourhood radiation levels could potentially increase.
Loss of privacy and potential terrorism threat
The radiofrequency remote signalling and control systems of smart meters can potentially be subject to terrorism and other cyber attacks. Terrorists and hackers may be able to turn the power off to homes by broadcasting a spoofed (falsified) control signal to the smart meters.
There is a loss of privacy. Electricity companies can know (almost instantaneously) the power usage at a property with a smart meter by using the remote meter reading system. They can use this data to develop a usage pattern report, which can then be used to deduce the time of day people are at home and when they are using electricity. Armed with this data, and aggregating it with other customers, the electric company can then determine the best times for on-peak and off-peak electricity usage periods, thereby maximising their revenue.
Customers pay for them and get no benefit from the smart meters. The electricity companies pocket the savings and do not pass it onto the customer. The government is forcing this upon consumers without proper consulation.
Another point of importantance is that the meters are owned by the electricity company, and not the homeowner. It is absurd the homeowner is financing the meters (via a new 'Metering Charge' on their bills).
Smart meters are not smart at all for consumers. They cause rip offs, degrade people's quality of living and eats away at their income.
This has got to stop. Say no to smart meters!
Refuse any offers to 'upgrade' your old meter to a smart one. Smart meters are unwelcome and unwanted. Put a prominent note inside the meter box to tell them not to replace it with a smart meter (make sure it does not interfere with fuses, circuit breakers or safety switches. If applying a sticky label to the meter itself, do not obscure any serial numbers or readouts on the meter itself).
- Say no to smart meters!
- Smart meters unwelcome here
- Smart meters: A dumb idea
Sign to inform installers not to install a smart meter
Print this out and apply it to your meter box. Make sure you do not cover up the meter window, any serial numbers or readouts.
Smart Meters, Dumb Backlash Smart meters can save energy and money and prevent blackouts. So why did the residents of Bakersfield, California hate them so much?