BC Hydro inflated claims of smart-meter benefits, NDP critic says

Original published by:
VANCOUVER — The Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016 8:50PM EST
Last updated Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016 8:52PM EST

 
 

BC Hydro provided the public with misleading financial information in order to justify spending more than $1-billion to install smart meters across the province, claims NDP energy critic Adrian Dix.

 

In a detailed letter to Jessica McDonald, the president and chief executive of BC Hydro, Mr. Dix accuses the Crown corporation of inflating a claim that the smart-meter program would lead to more than $500-million in net benefits, largely by reducing $732-million in electricity theft by marijuana grow-ops.

 

In a statement responding to the criticism, BC Hydro has defended the program, saying it is exceeding expectations in helping to reduce electricity theft. But Mr. Dix said that based on BC Hydro reports, three years into the program, the promised savings haven’t materialized.

 

BC Hydro installed 1.8 million smart meters in 2012 after presenting a business case that the program would more than pay for itself by more accurately tracking energy use, making the system more efficient and helping to combat the theft of electricity.

 

“The thing has been in place since the end of 2012. I don’t think there’s any evidence of a substantial change in grow-op operations or a reduction in electricity theft,” Mr. Dix said. “And now British Columbians have to pay the price. I mean, we didn’t need to spend a billion on this program.”

 

In his letter, sent to Ms. McDonald by e-mail on Thursday, Mr. Dix accuses BC Hydro of inflating the cost of electricity theft by grow-ops.    He says that in 2004, the utility claimed that total electricity theft from grow-ops was $12-million, but those estimates jumped dramatically – from $50-million in 2006 to $100-million in 2011 – to justify the smart-meter program.

 

“If you look at what they did, suddenly the amount of electricity theft started to go up,” Mr. Dix said. “In fairness to BC Hydro, they were ordered to [move to smart meters].” Then-premier Gordon Campbell “wanted to do it. Cabinet ordered them to do it. And so they had to come up with a new business case to somehow justify all this.”

 

Mr. Dix demanded an accounting of the smart-meter program from BC Hydro.
“They need a new business case. They need to be honest with people that smart meters are going to be a net cost to the province. They can still defend them if they want, they can say, ‘Well, we have to [replace] analog meters, etc.,’ but don’t continue to mislead people,” he said.

 

And Mr. Dix said that if BC Hydro can inflate the business-case numbers for “a massive and costly program” such as the switch to smart meters, it brings into doubt the corporation’s projections on other projects, such as the $9-billion Site C dam.

 

In an e-mail, Steve Vanagas, chief communications officer for BC Hydro, said the smart-meter and infrastructure program, known as SMI, is working as predicted.
“The SMI business case projected a reduction in theft to peak at 75 per cent by the end of [fiscal year] 2016. We are now expecting to reduce energy theft by 80 per cent or more. We expect that over 20 years, we will exceed our gigawatt-hour targets on energy-theft reduction,” he wrote.

 

“The original business case says the benefit from reduced electricity theft will be between $632 million and $832 million. While we are on track to exceed our theft-reduction targets, the exact value of these savings will fluctuate based on the cost of energy. We continue to expect the savings to be within that original range,” Mr. Vanagas stated.

 

He said BC Hydro had just received Mr. Dix’s letter and will respond to it in detail at a later
 

Electricity Consumption, Household Monitoring

The Neoliberal Politics of “Smart”:

Electricity Consumption, Household Monitoring, and the Enterprise Form

by Anthony M. Levenda, Dillon Mahmoudi, & Gerald Sussman
Portland State University

Portland State University PDXScholar
Urban Studies and Planning Faculty Publications
and Presentations Urban Studies and Planning

Canadian Journal of Communication, Vol 40 (4)

Excerpts from the full 23 page document.  This is a rather difficult read so read carefully.

In this article, we wish to discuss the relationship between the expansion and deepening of corporate encroachment on the household and everyday life through the emerging energy “smart grid.” 

Every home is equipped with the rudiments of electrical
infrastructure and commodities, ranging from the more modest forms of equipment, such as toasters and refrigerators, to the more extravagant, such as luxury hot tubs and full-scale entertainment complexes. but most people would not imagine that, apart from the bill they receive from their local electric utility, their every flick of an electrical switch integrates their cyberselves as an informational force of (re)production in the corporate capitalist accumulation process.

Technology developments have broad applications and implications, but the smart energy grid that is being implemented
across the United States and Canada, like the worldwide web, we argue, is being appropriated as part of a design to draw upon higher level data from dwellers (as surplus value) in the service of industrial profiteering and in the surveillance interests of industry
and the state.

The consumer’s use value of electricity consumption is thus being transformed into exchange value, as well as creating new forms of social monitoring and control by agencies of government, and of violations of constitutional protections under the Fourth Amendment of the u.S. constitution and Section 8 of the Canadian charter of rights and Freedoms.

As recent exposés regarding National Security Agency (NSA) data collection practices reveal, the clandestine state invasion of private lives and personal information on a sweeping scale would hardly be unprecedented.

………

There are three closely related core and mutually constituting issues we wish to discuss in this article.

The first concerns the matter of deep surveillance of household life and what this suggests about the erosion of the right to privacy principle embedded in the Fourth Amendment and Section 8 of the Canadian charter of rights and Freedoms, as well as about the regulation of daily life by highly organized, technology assisted external commercial and state forces.

The second, which closely follows from and rationalizes the first, relates to the Foucauldian idea about the disciplining of citizens,
which we see as achieved through ideology, discourse, and materiality linked to electrical energy use within the home, as well as to notions of “efficiency” that persuade people to adapt their behavior as “rational economic actors.”

This subjectivity acquiesces to the rules and regimentation of the corporate enterprise, leads to self taylorization of time and motion in consonance with presumed personal and environmental savings, and in general induces conformity to the norms that make for good neoliberal corporate state citizens.

Third is the question of how consumers are subsumed in value creation, an investigation into whether energy consumers, as “prosumers,” are concurrently producers of wealth by way of submission of their identities and use data that are appropriated in the process of capital formation (within its production and circulation functions)—anything from space/time use of appliances, to the ways by which self-regulation is commodified.

Environmental Illness – EHS and MCS – We must act.

Thilde Jensen - The Canaries - Marie

The main focus of this site StopSmartMetersBC.COM is to combat the proliferation of the Smart Meters in BC primarily because of the health effects of the Radio Frequency Radiation which includes EHS (electro-hypersensitivity).

Now, it seems, that EHS may be considered as part of Environmental Illness (EI) which also includes MCS (multiple chemical sensitivity)

I have found this extremely interesting article in groups.facebook.com called The Grow Dome EHS Project.  You should visit it.

The article is on the Financial Times Magazine site.  Take a look.

see http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7dc239c8-a900-11e5-9700-2b669a5aeb83.html

(Watch out on this site.  You may see the article the first time and then be forced to pay for future access the second time.  Do a print to PDF if you want to keep a copy.  Or pay $1 for a trial.)

The article is about a photographer Thilde Jensen who is EHS and has published a book of photos of people who are effected by EHS and/or MCS.  The title of the book is The Canaries.  Those who suffer from EHS /MCS are the Canaries in today’s world.  We all are suffering but 90% of us are really not aware of the impact, YET.  If we ignore the warning signs now then the problems will be 100 times worse in the near future.  We must resist the increasing RFR pollution and the increase in the chemicals in our lives.

see Thilde Jensen’s site  at http://thildejensen.com/

Electro – Hypersensitivity

I was reviewing one of the Facebook groups that I belong to and I found this amazing site with a treasure trove of information on EHS = Electro Hypersensitivity.

The information is laid out in a graphic/pictorial fashion and not in the typical text/essay fashion.  You can spend an hour on the main graphic and get a feeling for the whole subject and then when you are ready, you can click on a link to dig deeper into the current knowledge of EHS.   This will keep you busy for hours and hopefully will help you deal with EHS and become politically active to remove the RFR that causes EHS.

In my opinions, people with EHS are like the canaries in the coal mines a century ago.  We all suffer from RFR but those people with EHS suffer first.

Click here http://oscillatorium.com/id74.html

ElectroHypersensitivity-Oscillatorium

Electrohypersensitivity (EHS) – Olle Johannson in Sweden

In Sweden, electrohypersensitivity (EHS) is recognized
as a functional impairment which implies only the environment
as the culprit. The Swedish view provides persons
with this impairment a maximal legal protection,
it gives them the right to get accessibility measures for
free, as well as governmental subsidies and municipality
economic support, and to provide them with special
Ombudsmen (at the municipality, the EU, and the UN
level, respectively), the right and economic means to
form disability organizations and allow these to be part of
national and international counterparts, all with the simple
and single aim to allow persons with the functional
impairment electrohypersensitivity to live an equal life in
a society based on equality.

Read the full document here  Johansson 2015-1

Hooked on Wireless Technology

Key Scientific Question
Potential Health Effects of Our Wireless Age?

“Do long-­term, low-­level emissions from cell phones, Wi-Fi in schools, cell towers and smart meters cause adverse health effects?”
Clearly, they cause many biological effects.

Click here to download the Slide Show

 

 

THE BIOINITIATIVE REPORT 2012

Please read the

BioInitiative Report 2012

Conclusions

RF Color Charts

The RF Color Charts summarize many studies that report biological effects and adverse health effects relevant for cell towers, WI-FI, ‘smart’ wireless utility meters, wireless laptops, baby monitors, cell phones and cordless phones.