“Energy News” Reports Low-income Utility Customers in Illinois Could Be Paying More For Their Smart Meters. Why This Could Be Happening Elsewhere.

By B.N. Frank

Activist Post regularly reports about the many issues associated with utility Smart Meters.  This includes fires and explosions, rate increases for installation and frequent replacement, and the additional energy use for 24/7 customer data collection being passed on to customers.

Repeat – unlike original analog meters, Smart Meters allow utility companies to collect, store, and analyze customers’ utility use 24/7.  Some even share (or sell) this data with 3rd parties.  Creepy, right?  The irony in Illinois is that because of this 24/7 data collection, a study determined that low-income customers are subsidizing higher-income consumers.

From Energy News:

The findings affirm a theory that was almost impossible to test before smart meters became common in Illinois, providing far more granular data on electricity usage than traditional analog meters. Illinois is one of the few states in the country that allows researchers access to smart meter data that’s been stripped of customers’ identifying information.

“One of the reasons that we’re doing this is to show what’s possible when you have access to real data,” said David Kolata, executive director of the Illinois Citizens Utility Board. CUB analysts conducted the study using smart meter data from the summer of 2018 for about 2.5 million Illinois electric customers.

After standardizing the data, which came from ComEd and Ameren — Illinois’ two regulated utilities — the researchers found six groups, or “clusters,” of customers. Each cluster had a distinct pattern of electricity consumption, based on how much electricity they used each day and when that use peaked. The researchers compared those clusters to data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2017 American Community Survey. By using geographic identifiers, they were able to determine probable demographic characteristics of each cluster of customers.

Note:  24/7 data collection may have worked in favor of low-income residents in this situation.  However, there are too many reasons to NOT want Smart Meters.

Some environmental groups still support Smart Meters and Grids because of 24/7 data collection even though:

  1. Smart Meters and Grids require MORE ENERGY to operate
  2. They need to be frequently replaced which creates e-Waste
  3. They catch fire and explode and
  4. They emit and create Electrosmog which harms people, plants and animals

No – it doesn’t make sense.  Original analog meters lasted on average 40 years and weren’t associated with all of the above mentioned problems and more.

For additional information on Smart Meters, visit our archives and the following websites:

Image credit: StopSmartMeters.org

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