EMR Health Alliance of B.C. (EMRABC)


For immediate release:

Editorial: B.C. Hydro ‘Smart’ Meter Program

a Billion-Dollar Risk to Public Health

June 21, 2011

In July of this year, B.C. Hydro and FortisBC will embark upon a billion-dollar-plus venture to replace every analog hydro meter in the province with a wireless ‘smart’ meter by the end of 2012. Consumers of electricity will face up to an 80 percent increase in their electrical utility bills over the next few years as they did in Ontario. That may be not our major concern, however.  We will soon be bathed in microwave radiation emitted from these ‘smart’ grids and this could be harmful, according to many health authorities and independent scientific studies.

A ‘smart’ meter basically has a wireless transmitter (like that of a cell phone) built into the hydro meter. These ‘smart’ meters will work in conjunction with soon-to-be-mandated new ‘smart’ appliances and a wireless grid to send data back to the command control centre of the utility. The utility company will now be able to know the exact amount of time you use an appliance and during what times of day, although B.C. Hydro is saying time-of-use pricing will not be put into effect at this time.

The stage was set for this economic and ecological assault on British Columbians when Gordon Campbell signed the Clean Energy Act in April of 2010. The Clean Energy Act also exempted the  ‘smart’ meter program from the oversight of the B.C. Utilities Commission (BCUC) so that citizens could not find out how they were being ripped offand physically assaulted, rendering us without any means to fight against  this corporatist agenda.

The B.C. Smart Meter program is one of several recent Liberal attacks on the commonweal of our province, including the run-of-river financial and environmental fiasco, the Site C Dam proposal and the corruption-filled giveaway of B.C. Rail. The following article by award-winning journalist Will McMartin explains how the activities of these people lead directly to the doorsteps of Gordon Campbell and other high-profile Liberals.http://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2011/03/07/SmartMeterProfits/print.html.

Although the costs of this program are in itself enough to reject ‘smart’ meters, the concerns about the potential adverse health effects should be of even greater concern. In early May, the World Health Organization (WHO) through its research arm the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) listed electromagnetic radiation (EMR) as a Class 2B ‘Possible Carcinogen.’ That means that EMR emitted by wireless devices such as smart meters is now in the same category as DDT and lead, both of which are banned in Canada. If the full weight of independent scientific evidence had been taken into consideration, according to independent analyst Cindy Sage, it’s likely that would have been upgraded to a Class 2 ‘Probable Carcinogen.’ http://sagereports.com/smart-meter-rf/?p=343

One would think that the WHO’s announcement would be enough for any government to put the brakes on a program that guarantees higher levels of exposure to a potential carcinogen. Trent University toxicologist Dr. Magda Havas says the new WHO ruling for EMR means “that Health Canada is obliged to go back to the drawing board and revise its guideline for radiofrequency radiation. The current Health Canada guideline is one of the least protective in the world…” http://www.magdahavas.com/2011/06/05/whos-new-classification-of-rfr-what-does-this-mean-for-canada/

In Europe these meters have been refused due to their potential health risks. Claims by Energy Minister Rich Coleman that 20 years of exposure to ‘smart’ meter radiation is equivalent to a half-hour cellular telephone conversation are not true. (See Sage report above.) He is relying on industry spin doctors instead of the warnings of truly independent scientists. His remarks would be laughable if the ramifications of his ignorance were not so grim.

I ask everyone to take a few minutes to learn more about the health concerns over the proliferation of wireless signals that we are increasingly being exposed to. Please go to http://www.citizensforsafetechnology.org. or visit our website at www.emrabc.ca

Vicki Lightfoot, Director EM Radiation Health Alliance of BC

Summerland, B.C.  250 494 8540