Smart metering - the good, the bad, the ugly


By Liz Enbysk

SGN Managing Editor


We'll let you be the judge of which is which in today's good, bad and ugly smart meter round up, which will fill you in on everything from the latest opt outs, roll outs and left outs - to sabotage and another conspiracy theory.




ComEd outlines its strategy...

You may recall the big dust-up in Illinois last fall when the governor vetoed smart grid legislation that would have deterred Commonwealth Edison's smart grid plans and then legislators mustered enough votes to override the veto. Well, on Monday ComEd filed its official AMI deployment plan with the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). It calls for deployment of 130,000 smart meters this year, another 370,000 in 2013 and 520,000 the following year with no opt-out provisions, according to the Sun-Times. Over a 10-year period ComEd anticipates deploying over 4 million smart meters, leading to operational efficiencies that could save customers $2.6 billion over the 20-year life of the meters, according to a cost-benefit analysis by Black & Veatch that was filed with the ICC. The ICC still has to approve the plan.


Meanwhile, in the UK...

One of the United Kingdom's leading power and gas companies, E.ON UK has chosen Elster to be its smart metering partner on its "dual fuel" rollout. The company will deploy up to 100,000 Elster smart meters in residential properties by the end of 2012, with up to 200,000 more in 2013. Part of E.ON's commitment to install one million smart meters across the UK by 2014, Elster says the deployment will include one of its latest innovations, the next-gen AS300P electricity smart meter with its modular communications hub, and the BK-G4E gas smart meter. The new meters were designed to support tailored solutions for utilities working to comply with the European directive for smart gas and electricity metering.

Controversy continues in Naperville...

If you're following the situation in Naperville, Illinois where some residents are trying to stop the city's smart grid initiative, the latest twist came last week when a federal judge in Chicago declined to immediately issue a preliminary injunction sought by smart meter opponents and instead scheduled a briefing to give the city more time to respond. The opponents wanted the court to order the city to allow residents and businesses to keep their analog meters while the lawsuit they filed works its way through the system. But it's far from over, as the Naperville Sun explains.

(Corrected April 27 to clarify the judge's action was not a final ruling on the request for an injunction.)




Smart meter sabotage in Australia...

Power company Jemena confirmed tampering of 23 smart meters since December, according to an ABC News report. The meters were believed to have been sprayed with a chemical substance, likely chloride, which caused them to fail but no fires were reported. Police are investigating. "Tampering with any electrical equipment is very wreckless and extremely dangerous," said Jemena spokesman Scott Parker, who called on the perpetrator(s) to stop before someone is seriously injured.


It's a plot to control your toaster...

A story in WND Politics has author Brian Sussman warning that smart meters are a plot by the federal government and the United Nations to control energy usage in American homes. Sussman, author of Eco-Tyranny: How the Left's Green Agenda Will Dismantle America and Climategate, maintains smart meters are the first step in a move that could lead to citizens losing the freedom to run their appliances as they wish.


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