Editorial: Smart Meters are Coming

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Brian Gailey, Publisher & Editor of Klamath Falls News

Brian Gailey, Publisher & Editor of Klamath Falls News

If you are like me, you probably have received a letter from Pacific Power about the installation of a new smart meter at your home or business. I received mine today and, in a nutshell, the letter provides me an overview of what is going on with the update, how the update is being performed and when to expect the installation.

The letter says that I should receive the new smart meter in the month of May. A few days before installation, I am to receive a reminder phone call. The day of the install, I am to receive a knock at my front door from the authorized installer. The installer is to carry proper identification and drive vehicles that ID them to be authorized by Pacific Power. The installation is supposed to take just minutes and they will leave a door hanger, to inform me the task was complete if I am not home.

The letter also asks that access to the power meter location is not blocked or locked.

The new smart meters will monitor my household electricity usage and report that data back to Pacific Power. They are also designed to notify Pacific Power in the case of an outage. Thus, providing faster response times than the current system, of waiting for customers to call and report an outage.

Now I understand that a few people are not a fan of change, and others fear what the meters can and will send to Pacific Power and/or the health concerns of the meters.

Frankly, I am not worried about any of that. I trust that they will do the job intended and that the RF transmission will be minimal. I am more concerned over the cellphone that is always on my person broadcasting an RF signal and who knows what back to my carrier. 

 As Pacific Power states on their website, "...the radio frequency from smart meters is so low that you could stand directly in front of a smart meter for a year and still have less radio frequency exposure than you’d get from a single 15-minute cell phone call."

The world is becoming more and more connected. Through smart devices connected to the internet we can; remotely start our vehicles, turn on lights, regulate the temperature of our homes, we can monitor for fire, smoke and unwanted access, we can watch our kids and pets through web enabled cameras, and we can ask Siri and Alexa for nearly everything. Plus, we can do it all faster an easier than before. So why would I not want my power connected too?

If necessary, users can opt-out of the install through the Pacific Power website.

Nonetheless, from my point of view, it is a win-win for everyone.

I have included a few videos from Pacific Power on smart meters, the use and installation below. Find out more information on these new connected devices at https://www.pacificpower.net/smartmeter

What about you? What do you think about Pacific Power installing smart meters. Is it good, bad, indifferent? Comment below.


What is a Smart Meter?

Smart Meters for a Smart Grid

This editorial has not been endorsed or otherwise paid by any party. It has not been reviewed by any party prior to posting. The opinion is strictly that of the Klamath Falls News Editor, Brian Gailey.