2017-11-16 Some in California wonder if smeters contributed to recent major fires

[Abhilash Kantamneni, Joshua M. Pearce, Lucia Gauchia, Richelle WinklerAishwarya Mundada, Kunal ShahAllison Torres, SDG&E – Bills – Cal Fire – Farmer Nate Drummond – Explosions, Fires & Wildfires (Atlas Peak, Kilmore East, Tubbs, Witch) Liability Lawsuits – Frank JordanFrank PitreGail Rice, CMP Central Maine Power Company – Gregory WilsonJerry HillJon Wellinghoff & Neil Chatterjee, FERC – Judicial Council of California – Keith Stephens & Kevin Dasso, PG&E – Maine Public Utilities Commission – Net Metering – Off Grid Costs – Power Line Restart Device (Reclosers) – Power Outages Recovery – Rick Perry – Safety – SCE – Seth Berry – Smart Grid Defection – Solar – Studies – Utility Death Spiral – Wind | Colwood, BC – Australia – Japan – Santa Rosa & Stockton, California & Hawaii & Kentucky & Maine & Michigan & New York & Texas, USA] & (audio) & (videos)

 

 

1)    Going off grid is becoming a realistic goal for many families, according to this article and research from the Univ. of Michigan.

(click on photos to enlarge)

Subsidizing coal and nuclear power could drive customers off the grid

My team studied the potential for grid defection in northern Michigan [or https://www.researchgate.net/publication/303181451_Emerging_economic_viability_of_grid_defection_in_a_northern_climate_using_solar_hybrid_systems], one of the most challenging places in the United States to go solar. Winters there are dark and brutally cold, so households can rely entirely on solar power only in warm seasons.

However, solar coupled with so-called cogeneration systems and batteries can provide enough energy on cold, cloudy winter days. These small-scale combined heat and power systems, which are made mainly in Japan, usually run on natural gas and produce heat as they generate electricity. They can function year-round and are most effective in the winter when solar production is low. The costs of these hybrid systems are declining [or https://www.researchgate.net/publication/289569474_Levelized_cost_of_electricity_for_solar_photovoltaic_battery_and_cogen_hybrid_systems].” (see second link for info on this system.)

https://theconversation.com/subsidizing-coal-and-nuclear-power-could-drive-customers-off-the-grid-87159

https://www.academia.edu/20141118/Levelized_cost_of_electricity_for_solar_photovoltaic_battery_and_cogen_hybrid_systems

or

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/289569474_Levelized_cost_of_electricity_for_solar_photovoltaic_battery_and_cogen_hybrid_systems

 

2)    In California, people are wondering if smeters played any role in starting or spreading the horrendous fires a couple of months ago. Article and letter below in Letters.   Perhaps we should be asking the same questions in BC. Has anyone investigated the possibility that smeters or any part of the “smart” grid contributed to the fires that spread throughout much of BC?

3)    Does anyone who is getting this update live in Colwood?  If so, would you please let me know via email to:

dsnoble@shaw.ca   with “Colwood” on the subject line.

4)    Response to outages in Maine, as a result of a storm, was slowed due to smeters not working and collectors, etc. going down. This will happen in BC, too. Did no one think that perhaps the lines should be put underground rather than spend money on unnecessary smeters?

State lawmaker calls for investigation of CMP’s handling of storm

Berry, part of the Energy, Utilities, Techonolgy Committee, says part of the problem was several smart meters failed to report outages to CMP…

“Maine homes and businesses paid for all of the costs of the Smart meter infrastructure,” Berry said. “Very expensive.”

CMP admits there were problems with some Smart Meters not being able to communicate back with the company that the power was out. But CMP spokesperson Gail Rice says it had no bearing on their restoration efforts.

“We get the outage information from a broad range of sources including customer calls, the Smart metering system and also our damage assessments which are a crucial step in our storm recovery,” Rice said. “When the poles go down, the devices come down as well. And they don’t operate as well as they would if they were in their proper spots.”

http://wgme.com/news/local/state-lawmaker-calls-for-investigation-of-cmps-handling-of-storm

Letters:

Power-line restart device implicated in past wildfires by David R. Baker – San Francisco Chronicle – November 2, 2017

From someone in a California anti-smeter group.

Hello All,

Attached below is the full article on North California fire damage, by David R. Baker in today‘s November 15th, 2017, SF Chronicle, that refers to:

1. PG&E’s use of “devices that automatically try to restart power lines after they shut down”,

2. investigators with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire, have not yet determined a cause for any of the fires,

““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““

But First, here is a question:

Could ‘smart meters’ have had anything to do with the cause and speed of the No Calif. fires?
— the same way
that
Hundreds of fires were suddenly caused by exploding smart meters
right after a truck hit and knocked downed a PG&E ‘utility pole’,
in Stockton California on March 30th 2015. ?

Here are just three of many references to that media story:
1.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLsfHgZIMsc
2.  https://takebackyourpower.net/hundreds-of-smart-meters-simultaneously-explode/
3.  www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/latest…/hundreds-of-smart-meters-explode-in-california/

In other words,
It is a proven fact, that it only took only ONE downed power pole,
to cause hundreds of fires from simultaneously exploding smartmeters.
And, after all, the purpose of the smartmeters,
is that they are all connected on the national smart grid ?

““““““““““““““““““““`

Here is the full article:

Some who lost homes file suits against PG&E  By David R. Baker  – November 14, 2017 Updated: November 14, 2017 4:29pm – SF Chronicle:
http://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/Former-San-Francisco-mayor-Frank-Jordan-sues-PG-E-12356987.php

Former San Francisco Mayor Frank Jordan, his wife and a Sonoma County couple who escaped last month’s wildfires by jumping in their pool filed suit Tuesday against Pacific Gas and Electric Co., joining a growing number of North Bay homeowners accusing the utility of sparking the blazes.

The latest suits were filed Tuesday by a coalition of five law firms alleging that PG&E, through poor maintenance of its equipment and inadequate trimming of nearby trees, had a role in starting the Wine Country wildfires, even though the state’s official investigation has not pinpointed a cause.

The lawyers said Tuesday they would look into many issues that have come to light since the fires erupted on Oct. 8, including PG&E’s use of devices that automatically try to restart power lines after they shut down, even if they are lying on the ground. And the attorneys rejected PG&E’s recent claim  that electrical lines owned and installed by someone else may have sparked the most destructive of the fires, the Tubbs Fire, which burned entire neighborhoods of Santa Rosa.

“We can’t rely on their statement that it’s someone else’s wires,” said attorney Frank Pitre, with Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, at a Tuesday morning news conference in Burlingame. “We want to see.”

Jordan and his wife owned a weekend home on Mark West Springs Road in Santa Rosa. They fled the night of Oct. 8 after seeing flames in the distance and warning their neighbors. Jordan, who served as mayor from 1992 to 1996, was scheduled to attend Tuesday’s news conference but had a last-minute conflict, Pitre said.

Gregory Wilson, who lost his home just outside Santa Rosa, told reporters that he and his wife took shelter in their pool as the fires overran their area.

“Basically, for the next three hours, we watched everything burn around us,” he told reporters, his voice just above a whisper due to smoke inhalation. “It’s a nightmare you couldn’t even imagine.”

As of last week, more than 120 plaintiffs had filed 15 separate suits against PG&E over the fires, according to an estimate the utility included in a legal filing. Some of the law firms involved have even started running television ads seeking more North Bay residents interested in suing PG&E.

And yet, investigators with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire, have not yet determined a cause for any of the fires, which together burned 210,000 acres, destroyed 8,900 structures and killed at least 43 people. The investigation may take months.

Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy hired its own investigators and filed its suits Tuesday, working with law firms Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora; Panish Shea & Boyle; Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger; and Abbey, Weitzenberg, Warren & Emery.

PG&E spokesman Keith Stephens noted in response that Cal Fire’s official investigation remains under way, and PG&E is cooperating with it.

“Our primary focus has been — and continues to be — the safety and well-being of the customers and communities that have been affected by these wildfires,” he said in an email.

PG&E last week filed a request with the Judicial Council of California to organize the many North Bay wildfire suits into five separate proceedings, based on the location of each fire concerned. So all of the plaintiffs suing over the Atlas Peak Fire, for example, would be part of a single proceeding, while those affected by the Tubbs Fire would be in a separate proceeding. The council, the policy-making body for California’s court system, has the authority to coordinate proceedings in complex cases.

David R. Baker is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: dbaker@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @DavidBakerSF

 

Sharon Noble
Director, Coalition to Stop Smart Meters

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.”
~ Albert Einstein

www.facebook.com/Coalitiontostopsmartmeters