Category Archives: Smart Meters

BC Human Rights Tribunal Rejects Class Action Against Smart Meters

September 19, 2014

Smart meters - 4 reasons t say NOThis just in from Sharon Noble of the British Columbia organization Coalition To Stop Smart Meters. It pertains to a human rights complaint filed in 2012  by Citizens for Safe Technology against BC Hydro, on behalf of electrosensitive people. The BC Human Right Tribunal dismissed the complaint yesterday, September 18, 2014. 

Editorial Note:
EHS = Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity
RF = Radio Frequency Radiation
$$meters = wireless “smart” meters
BCUC = BC Utilities Commission

“Sad news. Our Human Rights case was dismissed by the Human Rights Tribunal. This was a class action on behalf of people with EHS and whose doctors said that they should avoid RF and not have $$meters. Even though EHS is a recognized by the Human Rights Commission in Canada, the Americans with Disabilities in the US, and as a disability in other countries, the Tribunal chose not to accept evidence but rather to base its decision in large part on the evidence the BCUC accepted in the Fortis application.

“Fortis BC paid a company (Exponent) to defend the $meter. Exponent is a “product defense company” and has defended some of the most dangerous products in the world – pesticides, Agent Orange, asbestos, etc and now microwave radiation. They buy scientists who will produce reports saying anything is safe. One of their people said that our bodies emit more radiation that does a smart meter and the BCUC accepted that while rejecting testimony from world-renowned experts like Dr. Martin Blank, Dr. Isaac Jamieson and Dr. Meg Sears.

“It’s a sad day when the government is allowed, by the Human Rights Tribunal, to come between a patient and his physician, but this is what has happened. Here is the decision for you to read. This makes it more urgent for us to fight this re: fires, fee discrimination, and our Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”

The text of the Tribunal’s reasons for decision is here.

The other class action lawsuit against BC Hydro over smart meters is still ongoing. That one represents all customers of BC Hydro (residential and business) who are unhappy about any aspect of the smart meter program (i.e., getting one if you didn’t want it, getting one and later deciding you don’t want it, being harassed and bullied for refusing to get one), whether or not you currently have a smart meter. 

There is no cost and no financial risk to join the ongoing class action lawsuit against BC Hydro. Go here to join: http://bcsmartmeterlawsuit.ca

PHOTOS: Anti-Smart Meter Rally in Nanaimo

By Kim Goldberg

June 15, 2014

© Kim GoldbergMore than 75 people turned out for Nanaimo’s rally against smart meters yesterday, on the sidewalk in front of MLA Leonard Krog’s office downtown. The event was part of a multi-city Day of Action Against Smart Meters occurring across British Columbia and Quebec.

Speakers described the risks of fire, surveillance, and illness associated with wireless smart meters. And some described their own personal health ordeal triggered by the installation of a smart meter on their home—from headaches, to heart arrhythmia, to loss of vision.

Attendees and passers-by on the busy street corner were encouraged to join the class action lawsuit currently underway against BC Hydro over the risks associated with smart meters.

Story and images © Kim Goldberg

Norm Abbey (© Kim Goldberg)

Jim Stachow dons his 'tinfoil hat' to take the stage. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Jim Stachow dons his ‘tinfoil hat’ to take the stage. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Kim Goldberg

© Kim Goldberg

June 14, 2014 Anti-Smart Meter rally in Nanaimo. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

© Kim Goldberg

Solar: The Only Smart Grid (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Save the Bees, Foil your Smart Meter (photo © Kim Goldberg)

Save the Bees, Foil your Smart Meter (photo © Kim Goldberg)

Wireless Radiation Turns Our Protons into Radio Transmitters

By Kim Goldberg

May 21, 2014

RadiofrequencyToolkit_v4_06132013In 2013, the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control issued a 377-page report titled “Radiofrequency Toolkit for Environmental Health Practitioners.”

The entire document can be viewed and downloaded here.

The weighty tome appears to be primarily a government whitewash of the wireless industry, in an effort to allay legitimate public concern about the biotoxic nature of RF radiation from cell phones, cordless phones, wi-fi, and (most significantly to the BC government) smart meters.

The report drowns us in “science” designed to make any reader feel that if she can’t wade through dozens of mathematical equations using long strings of Greek letters, then she isn’t qualified to speak out about RF hazards.

The report trots out all the predictable faulty logic and false analogies such as telling us on page 25 that our own bodies are constantly emitting EMF in the 31,000 GHz range (i.e., our infra-red heat signature). So why worry about the lower frequencies of our wireless devices, seems to be the implied question/statement.

“MRI Scanner” courtesy of onlinedocturs, Flickr (CC BY)

“MRI Scanner” courtesy of onlinedocturs, Flickr (CC BY)

But then on page 31, something interesting pops up. While describing the purportedly benign Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machines used in hospital radiology, the report tells us that “RF fields of 10-400 MHz [are used] to excite the protons in the body and cause them to emit radio waves for the acquisition of anatomical images.”

(For a more detailed description of this phenomenon of proton excitation by radio frequencies, see the British Medical Journal article on Magnetic Resonance Imaging.)

Thanks so much for making my case for me.

Yes, it can certainly be medically useful (at times) to have those MRI images. But the relevant take-away here is that our protons are perpetually being turned into RF transmitters by our daily exposure to wireless RF radiation from smart meters, cell phones, wi-fi, and more.

And that particular transformation of our bodies at a sub-atomic level is one that nobody signed on for and most people would reject if they knew it was happening to them.

Article © Kim Goldberg, 2014

 

Steve Weller: Dispelling Misconceptions about EHS

By Kim Goldberg

May 13, 2014

Steve Weller, Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia, and author of the report: “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Steve Weller, Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia, and author of the report: “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Australian Steve Weller was 32 years old when he first determined in 2001 that he was sensitive to wireless radiation. He had used computers his entire adult life. He also worked in the IT (Information Technology) industry, and describes himself as an early adopter of technology.

“I was looking forward to the freedom [wireless technology] would afford me,” Steve recalls. “No more wires cluttering the desk, free to do my work on my laptop at the kitchen table while I had breakfast.”

Being technically savvy, Steve decided to buy the most powerful Wi-Fi router that was available at the time. His subsequent discovery that he was being sickened by the hardware of his life and work was not easy news to absorb. But he could not ignore the alarming effects this technology was having on his body.

“On first using my wireless router, I began to feel pressure in my head, pressure in my chest, and tingling sensations in my hands and face within a few minutes of use,” Steve says. “I also noted (and so did my wife) that my temperament changed from my normally relaxed manner to being more agitated and short tempered when using my Wi-Fi enabled router.”

With more prolonged use, Steve’s symptoms expanded to include a burning sensation in his intestines, chest pressure, irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) followed by thumping heartbeats “like my heart was trying to jump out of my chest,” Steve recalls.

“I soon realised that a consistent pattern was developing when using my wireless router… It was at this point that I made a conscious decision to not use a wireless network to connect to the internet,” he says.

Today, 13 years later, Steve still uses computers, he still works in IT, and he is still electrosensitive. But he has, through much research and reading (and relocation), learned how to reduce his exposure and thereby keep the worst of his symptoms at bay—at least until wireless smart meters were introduced to his neighbourhood in 2011.

Although Steve managed to keep a smart meter off his own home in Melbourne, he was severely affected by his neighbours’ two smart meters that were installed three meters away from his bedroom.

“I found I was waking at specific times every night,” Steve recounts. “It felt like someone had taken a long, sharp needle and quickly pushed it into my head.” Steve found he could no longer use the front areas of his house that received the biggest dose from his neighbours’ smart meters. He has recently moved from Melbourne to Queensland, a city that has not been fitted up with smart meters.

Since moving from Melbourne to Queensland, where there are no wireless smart meters yet,  Steve Weller now has a safe haven in his backyard... for the time being.

Since moving from Melbourne to Queensland, where there are no wireless smart meters yet, Steve Weller now has a safe haven in his backyard… for the time being.

Steve, who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Microbiology from Monash University in Australia, is now the Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia.

And in an effort to educate politicians, scientists, and the general public on the under-recognized health crisis of electrosensitivity, Steve has documented his own case, along with much scientific research, in an 18-page brief titled “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Read and download Steve Weller’s complete case study here: Steve Weller Case Study. 

What needs to happen next…

From the final pages of Steve Weller’s well-researched and thoroughly annotated brief on EHS:

“First and foremost, governments need to recognise that EHS is real and can be a serious health impairment, like Sweden does. Furthermore, medical professionals need to be educated on what EHS is, how to diagnose it and how to treat it. Education programs need to be established at Universities that cover this topic. The public also needs to be educated and informed of the risks of using wireless devices clearly and without prejudice or unwanted influence from those who market these devices. The media often portrays those who are suffering in a poor light, leading to hurtful comments and ridicule from uninformed members of the public. This needs to change. Scientists often weigh in on the argument, suggesting that EHS is a psychosomatic illness based on what I believe to be faulty scientific studies that use only the provocation test as the basis for their claims. Further research maybe required, but those who are suffering should not be held hostage by wrangling scientists and politicians as they argue the validity of EHS and testing techniques. The symptomology and causative factors of EHS are known and have been known for years.”

September 21, 2014 Update: Steve is now exploring the possibility of creating a safe haven somewhere in Australia for people with EHS. He has written a summary outlining some of the many logistical considerations for bringing a community of electrosensitive people together for this purpose. It is a document that may be useful to other people elsewhere who are trying to establish EHS refuges. 

Read and download Steve’s Safe Haven Brief here: Safe Haven Brief by Steve Weller.

 

Media Refuse to Publish Mayor’s Critique of Smart Meters

April 23, 2014

The following guest editorial about smart meters was written by John Ranns, the longtime Mayor of the District of Metchosin on southern Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Mayor Ranns wrote this guest editorial in November 2013 and submitted it for publication to the Victoria Times-Colonist and subsequently to other major newspapers in British Columbia. When his secretary followed up with the Victoria Times-Colonist about the status of his submission, the newspaper said it would not be publishing the piece because the piece was not topical. Mayor Ranns received no other replies from major media, and ultimately no major media outlets published his piece.

Read for yourself the opinion that British Columbia’s news outlets saw unfit to print.

Guest Editorial on Smart Meters

by John Ranns, November 2013

Mayor John Ranns, District of Metchosin on Southern Vancouver Island

Mayor John Ranns, District of Metchosin on Southern Vancouver Island

What I find most disturbing about BC Hydro’s forced imposition of smart meters is how readily politicians of all parties have abandoned fundamental principles of a free society in order to accommodate bureaucratic expediency. Individual freedom demands that government has boundaries. As far back as the 1600s the concept that individuals need sanctuary from government was established in British Common Law (still applicable in British Columbia), clearly stating that your home is your castle and the sovereign will not cross your threshold without following due process. Except now they have. In one stroke, the Province is saying that lawful citizens no longer have a choice in what enters or leaves their homes.

Although debate has been carefully steered to encompass technical arguments and ignore principle, there are two facts about smart meters that cannot be denied: They emit radiation into your house. And, when Hydro chooses, they will gather and disseminate personal information, which previously would have required a court order. 

Whether the radiation is harmful or ultimately proves to be safe is not the point. What is critical to the issue is that many people believe it to be harmful, and now their sanctuary, along with their peace of mind, is denied them. Nor does it matter how little you may care what government, corporations, and hackers know about what you do in your home. What matters is that the safeguards protecting others who do care must remain in place.

And forget the argument that people are free to go somewhere else. In our current economy most people in this province who have a job and a mortgage have no choice but to stay where they are and do what BC Hydro dictates. For populated areas, supplied electricity has become more essential to life than supplied water. Urban regulations will not permit alternative sources. And those who could legally go off-the grid can rarely afford the expense. BC Hydro is a government-established monopoly, so there are no competitors to turn to for service provision. Under these circumstances the only protection an individual has are our elected representatives. Except in this case, regardless of party, they have determined that what is good for business is more important than long established individual rights.

Recently, politicians of all description prominently displayed poppies and paid homage to the sacrifices made by previous generations who understood that to maintain a free system over time it is necessary for certain principles to be inviolate. Government must conform to the principle rather than change the principle to accommodate the wishes of whoever happens to be in power. It is why we have Constitutions. Unfortunately many politicians these days don’t seem to think that way. They do not recognize that our jobs are not only to represent our electorate, majority and minority, but also to serve as guardians of the free system. Sadly we seem all too willing to thoughtlessly forfeit our freedom for the latest of fleeting conveniences that our runaway technology may provide.

John Ranns

Mayor, District of Metchosin

Boil The Frog Slowly: Interview with Kim Goldberg

April 23, 2014

Photo © Kim Goldberg

Photo © Kim Goldberg

Radio host Pat Rullo of Boil the Frog Slowly interviews me for one hour about the risks of smart meters, wireless radiation, school Wi-Fi, and the growing quest for EMF-free sanctuaries around the globe on her radio show “Boil the Frog Slowly”. You’ll also find out what the word ‘refugium’ means to biologists. Interview begins 8.5 minutes in:

http://boilthefrogradio.com/kimgoldberg/

EMF-Harm Interview with Kim Goldberg

March 9, 2014

(© Kim Goldberg)

(Photo © Kim Goldberg)

On March 6, 2014, I had the pleasure of being the featured guest on the weekly Occupy EMF Harm Teleconference hosted by Sandy Fields in New York City. 

For nearly two hours, Sandy and I and other callers on the line discussed electrosensitivity, smart meters, school wi-fi, health risks of wireless radiation, the desperate search for sanctuary, and my current book project: Refugium: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague

You can listen to the full interview here. (The conversation begins 9 minutes in, so just advance the recording to that point and play.) 

Sandy’s weekly Occupy EMF Harm Teleconference has been going since June 2013, and is one of the “hubs” of the InterOccupy Network. The network seeks to bring people together in a democratic fashion for discussion, organizing, and action in the spirit of the historic Occupy Movement that began 2011. 

Previous guests on the Occupy EMF Harm Teleconference have included Barrie Trower, Olle Johansson, George Carlo, Magda Havas, Joshua Hart, Sam Milham, Jerry Day, and many others. 

Kim Goldberg