The VDT apparently declined to print this LTE submission. I added the links and images. -jsq
When I opened a recent “Sunday Business” section of the Valdosta Daily Times I was expecting to see a thorough discussion of the pros and cons of smart meters. After all, the headline read: “Smart Meters — Fact or Fiction?” What I found, however, was quite different. In case you missed it, here a summary of the highlights:
According to Georgia Power “concerns about smart meters are nothing more than myths.” These concerns range from health risks and increased bills to an invasion of your privacy and house fires started by electrical shorts. Myths or not, the best way to counter customers’ concerns would be to provide studies that, for example, show that smart meters are less dangerous than cellular phones or that electricity bills have not increased as a result of smart meters. However, customers only get assurances which, frankly, do nothing to dispel existing concerns.
Georgia Power also claims that it is using smart meters to be more environmentally
responsible. However, several of Georgia Power’s coal firing plants are listed as our nation’s worst polluters. Scherer Plant near Macon, for example, holds the record as the top greenhouse-gas emitter in the US. This coal plant spews 22.8 million metric tons of carbon dioxide every year. To translate such a figure into terms everyone can understand, this amounts to the pollution of more than 3 million light trucks driving on our roads (www.epa.gov/oms/consumer/f00013.htm). Therefore, Georgia Power’s claim of environmental responsibility by cutting positions (and vehicles) because former “employees don’t have to drive around anymore” is just laughable!
To top this all off, customers who have refused smart meters are now told that “if they want electricity, they have to have a smart meter on their home.” In other words, we are not only dealing with a utility company that operates some of the country’s worst power plants when it comes to pollution, it now uses intimidation to force its customers to accept smart meters, just as they are forcing us to pay for the construction of nuclear power plants which are neither safe nor cost efficient.
In summary, a better title for the article might have been “Georgia Power’s Fictions and Threats” since it presented no facts in response to customers’ concerns, followed by threats for noncompliance. This article also allowed GA Power to continue its charade as environmentally responsible company, when it in fact is not, as its lacking support for clean and renewable energies like wind and solar clearly indicates.
I don’t know about you, but if I had the possibility to switch my electricity provider, I would do so in a second.