WASHINGTON, Oct. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 35 demonstrations against 'smart' meters are being held throughout the US and Canada today, including in Washington, DC, Naperville, IL, Detroit, MI, Maui, HI, and Santa Cruz, CA. The wave of protests is timed to coincide with "GridWeek," a conference being held in Washington D.C. by industry and government proponents of the 'smart' grid.
The National Campaign to Stop Smart Meters! and Wireless Radiation Protection Coalition, along with more than thirty-five grassroots organizations around North America, are holding an International Day of Action today to demand an immediate halt to deployment - and a recall - on 'smart' meters. 'Smart' meters are digital, wireless devices that monitor utility usage and maintain continuous two-way communication between the customer's property and the utility company. Many utilities are replacing traditional analog meters on homes and businesses in the US and other countries as a supposed energy-saving measure.
(For a full list of demonstrations, news updates, links to additional resources and protest coverage see http://actiondaytostopsmartmeters.org)
Opponents say that promised energy savings are failing to materialize. They say smart meter mesh networks in fact consume significant energy, and are causing numerous problems in communities where they have been deployed, including:
HEALTH: 'Smart' meters emit strong bursts of microwave RF radiation that the World Health Organization labeled a Class 2B carcinogen in May of 2011. An announcement by 54 scientists and medical experts from 20 countries who have authored hundreds of peer-reviewed studies on the health effects of electromagnetic fields last week warned of severe impacts of widespread pulsed microwave exposure from the meters:
"Adverse neurological effects have been reported in people who sustain close proximity to wireless meters, especially under 10 feet....Children may particularly be at risk of developing electromagnetic hypersensitivity or diseases such as cancer….."
PRIVACY: According to a Congressional Research Service Report, 'smart' meters will be able to reveal people's daily schedules, the use of individual appliances, certain medical equipment and other personal information.
FIRES: A series of 26 'smart' meter fires in Pennsylvania forced PECO Energy to suspend installations in August. The meters are not UL certified. A June 15th 2012 presentation by the Ontario Fire Marshal states:
"We encountered an unusual amount of fire incidents involving smart meters…prior to any proper investigation the utility company had removed and replaced the meters from the affected areas…"
Despite these safety problems, utilities in many parts of the country are unlawfully forcing smart meters onto private property and disconnecting people's services or charging them fees for refusing to accept a smart meter, even though the meters are not mandatory by law.
"Like any defective product, whether automobile, food or drug, 'smart' meters require an immediate product recall," says Joshua Hart, spokesperson for the Campaign.
Contact: Joshua Hart, Spokesperson
National Campaign to Stop Smart Meters!
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SOURCE National Campaign to Stop Smart Meters!