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Contents

SUMA-NW Meeting with Teresa Mosqueda.
Washington Utility & Transportation Commission (WUTC) DOCKET U-180525.
Puget Sound Energy Status.
5G Update.
SUMA-NW Meeting?.

SUMA-NW Meeting with Teresa Mosqueda

Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda is the new Committee Chair for the Housing, Health, Energy & Workers’ Rights Committee. This committee was reformed in 2018 from the Energy and Environment Committee when Councilmember Kshama Sawant was the Chair.

Jordan Van Voast and Sonia Hoglander met with Ms. Mosqueda on the 10th of January. We had been attempting to get a meeting since May 2018. Sonia gave a 2 minute testimony to the committee in September 2018 asking to meet. Teresa agreed to meet with us on the spot.

The primary reason we wished to meet was because many of you had opted out and retained your analog meters, but were told that Seattle City Light (SCL) would reconsider after the deployment if customers would be able to keep them. Secondarily, being solution oriented, we wanted to plant the seed for removing wireless meters with the next generation of meters – which we anticipate will need to occur within 10 years.

Regarding the analog meters, Teresa thought that analog meters would be retained for those customers who wanted them and that a statute had been put in place to eliminate the one time, administrative opt-out fee of $124.43. We asked about the additional, billing cycle fee of $15.87, and Teresa said no. She did mention that a new rate structure proposal was expected in the June 2019 time-frame and any fees would be reviewed then. We asked that this information be publicized on the SCL website as an official change to the AMI Meter Opt-Out Policy. We also asked for net-metering customers be allowed to opt out and that the billing cycle fee be eliminated.

Regarding municipal fiber, Sonia testified in September that a municipal fiber network would alleviate the need for wireless electricity meters with the additional benefit of controlling net-neutrality and offering faster, safer Internet access than 5G. Sonia reiterated those points and gave Teresa a copy of “Re-Inventing Wires” by Dr. Schoechle. Teresa was genuinely interested in the idea. The City Council is already discussing Municipal Broadband, but we emphasized wired NOT wireless.

We discussed the billing problems briefly as well. We thanked her for efforts to audit SCL regarding their problems in overbilling since the new system was implemented. We further noted that it is not just the system wide problems, but that there is evidence that digital meters are not as accurate as claimed and that there is no way for an individual customer to verify or appeal measurements by the AMI meters. Note: this problem is raised in the WUTC inquiries in the following news article.

Washington Utility & Transportation Commission (WUTC) DOCKET U-180525

The WUTC regulates all for-profit or investor owned utilities (IOUs); Avista Corporation (Spokane area), Northwest Natural Gas Company, Cascade Natural Gas Corporation, Pacific Power & Light Company, and Puget Sound Energy.

Puget Sound Energy (PSE) is of particular concern as their territory takes over where SCL leaves off; the entire eastside, north and south of Seattle. PSE has already begun stealthily deploying AMI meters. An article following this WUTC report provides the status and details of PSE plans.

In July 2018 the WUTC requested shareholder input to questions regarding AMI policy in Washington State. All of the above IOUs responded. SUMA-NW submitted responses to those questions and the answers from PSE. Based on those inputs, the WUTC drafted changes to the Washington Administrative Codes (WACs). The draft WAC changes have been sent out for review and feedback to shareholders, comments are due by January 31, 2019, Docket U-180525. SUMA-NW resubmitted comments mentioned previously. There are two sections that have been modified:

  • Service Disconnect
    • The utility must contact the customer in person even with “remote disconnects” in order to allow the person to pay.
  • Personal Identifiable Information (PII)
    • This strengthens the privacy requirements for usage data.

There are several additional questions that the WUTC requests feedback for. We think maybe SUMA-NW comments might have influenced these questions, though we are not directly credited, rather someone did some research and found another independent source. Here is the general gist of the questions:

  • AMI Meter testing and accuracy requirements – has accuracy been tested in various environmental conditions (cold, hot, wet), and with non-linear loads or noisy transmission lines?

Remote Disconnect – Should this be limited to occur within a specific temperature range?

  • Should companies be allowed to collect and release, with no restrictions, aggregate load information that enables the identification of customer class consumption behavioral patterns?

Here is what SUMA-NW submitted in the original response:

  • 13. What meters will the companies be installing in Washington State (brand, make, model)?
    • a. What are the parameters for measuring and testing the accuracy of the meters?
    • b. What accuracy range do manufacturer(s) guarantee for those meter sets?
  • All brands, makes and models of AMI meters have problems; some accuracy, some fire, and some firmware.
  • The digital meter manufacturers claim that their meters are more accurate than analog meters, however this claim is being challenged as there are increasing reports that increases in bills are not as a result of more accuracy but faulty measurement. Further, there is no way to verify or audit the data collected in the field, therefore no path of appeal.
  • Accuracy versus precision:
  • Study shows digital meters are more intolerant to external conditions; cold, heat, water:

There will be a Hearing and a Workshop:

  • Public hearing in this matter will be held on Thursday, February 21, 2019, beginning at 6 p.m., in Room 206, Richard Hemstad Building, 1300 S. Evergreen Park Drive S.W., Olympia, Washington.
  • STAKEHOLDER WORKSHOP – In addition to filing written comments, interested persons are invited to attend a stakeholder workshop on Wednesday, March, 13, 2019, beginning at 9:30 a.m., in Room 206, Richard Hemstad Building, 1300 Evergreen Park Drive S.W., Olympia, Washington.
  • The Commission’s teleconference bridge line will be available for the workshop. The Commission prefers and recommends that interested persons participate in person and share ideas in a workshop setting. However, if this imposes a hardship, interested persons may participate at the workshop via the Commission’s teleconference bridge at (360) 664-3846. The conference bridge is limited to 22 access lines.

SUMA-NW will submit an addendum to the additional requests for comment relative the rules changes and new questions, while also reiterating the health concerns and opt-out fees; both the purview of the WUTC.

  • WUTC Mission
    • is to protect the people of Washington by ensuring that investor-owned utility and transportation services are safe, available, reliable and fairly priced.
  • Health & Safety
    • WUTC defers to the FCC to claim that AMI meters are safe. We all know these standards are bogus, if not downright criminal. See consumer
  • Possible Talking Points
    • Wireless AMI meters affect health and the environment more than AMR meters.
    • FCC electromagnetic radiation exposure guidelines are inadequate based on current science.
    • IOUs should be warning customers of the upgrade and the ability to opt out.
    • PSE should halt deployment of AMI until UTC has finalized rule changes.
    • Concern that AMI meter accuracy claims cannot be independently verified, audited, or appealed.
    • PII rules do not address risks to cybersecurity or from data hacking.
    • Usage data belongs to customers and should not be used in aggregate without customer permission.

Puget Sound Energy Status

While you are calling, emailing, or submitting a response, tell WUTC that PSE should not do anything until there is an opt-out policy.
To Opt-Out from PSE AMI meters:

If you are interested in opting out, please call 1-888-225-5773 and we will put your meter replacement on hold until we have a WUTC-approved opt-out policy.

PSE is moving ahead with AMI; they already have AMR as a standard. They are deliberately downplaying the fact that they are deploying “smart” meters because it is such a toxic meme after seeing the push back that Seattle City Light received when they announced their AMI deployment. So PSE is subversively deploying “smart” meters without public notice. PSE is pretending that the upgrade from AMR to AMI is no big deal — a smart meter is a smart meter. No one complained about the AMR “smart” meter. This is the tactic they are employing. Don’t let them fool you. AMI is much worse than AMR. The medical community has not been able to study why people are more irritated by the AMI frequency signature, but the customer outcry has been loud internationally.

Here is what the PSE website has to say about their Meter Upgrade Project:

“New technology to improve system delivery

We are updating our electric and natural gas metering equipment across our entire service area. This is a six-year project, scheduled to complete in 2023. The project will involve swapping out almost 2 million meters – 1.1 million electric meters and 800,000 gas modules – along with the supporting infrastructure across all 10 counties we serve.

Why are we upgrading our meters?

Our automated meter reading (AMR) system is approaching the end of its projected lifespan. We were one of the first adopters of digital AMR technology in the country in the late 1990s, making us an industry leader in metering technology during that time. Today, AMR hardware and software are becoming increasingly obsolete, making them difficult to support and maintain.

AMI (advanced metering infrastructure) is the current standard for metering technology and is a crucial step for us. It uses two-way communication and on-board memory (AMR has one-way communication and no memory) to send meter data through a secured wireless network.”

Notice that the AMR meters only lasted 15 years, unlike the analog meters that lasted 40 plus years. PSE began in 2018, replacing AMR meters with new AMI meters. This included Bellevue, Sammamish, Kent, Federal Way, and Des Moines areas. Northern and southern parts of King County are scheduled for 2019. See the map at https://www.pse.com/pages/meter-upgrade.

Here is what PSE says about Opt-Out:

If you are interested in opting out, please call 1-888-225-5773 and we will put your meter replacement on hold until we have a WUTC-approved opt-out policy.

5G Update

One of the most informative website is www.Whatis5G.info.

Environmental Health Trust, www.EHTrust.org, is also taking a lead on this problem. There is legislation across the country and at the Federal level to streamline – remove local control – deployment of 5G. There are 5G pilot rollouts now occurring in numerous cities and it’s happening so fast it is hard to stay informed.

Activists around the country are gearing up. You can get involved through (these 2 groups have formed a coalition):

Arthur Firstenberg has filed a lawsuit against Santa Fe, New Mexico, the New Mexico Attorney General, and the US Government stating that 5G is an assault against his constitutional rights. You can support Arthur and sign the appeal at https://www.5gspaceappeal.org/ .

info .

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