June 5, 2011
You don't have to be a tinfoil-hat-wearing paranoiac to be worried that the electromagnetic radiation from modern wireless devices may be harmful to your health. But are the "smart meters" being installed by utilities throughout the state frying homeowners' brains, as many consumers and even municipal governments fear? The risks are vanishingly small, while the economic and environmental benefits of smart meters are wide and obvious. In fact, we wish L.A.'s municipal utility would get busy installing the devices, though that isn't likely to happen any time soon.
June 4, 2011
Politics and religion Re "Romney's religious 'test,' " Opinion, June 1 In reading Tim Rutten's Op-Ed column concerning Mitt Romney's Mormonism, I was struck by the quote from Warren Cole Smith: "I believe a candidate who either by intent or effect promotes a false and dangerous religion is unfit to serve. " I understand I am in a minority here, but I believe that anyone who thinks there is an immortal, all-powerful being sitting somewhere listening to their mumblings is not totally sane and almost certain to be dangerous.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 29, 2011 |
Pacific Gas & Electric Co.'s plan to install 'smart meters' in this affluent Bay Area community of eco-friendly homes, yoga studios and organic restaurants has unleashed a torrent of anger among customers who fear the devices will expose them to hazardous pulses of electromagnetic radiation. Hundreds of Fairfax residents have posted red-and-white "Smart meter not here" signs beside their mechanical meters as a warning to PG&E technicians. A few have secured their spinning-dial meters with gates, cages and padlocks.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 17, 2011 |
Glendale and Burbank officials are touting their new "smart meters" project as an exciting technological advancement that will help the utilities and customers track real-time water and electrical use. But a small group of residents is resisting, saying they're worried about the health effects of the radio waves emitted by the meters. They also say the utilities' ability to view electricity and water usage as it occurs is intrusive and could change the rate structure. When a contractor arrived to install a smart meter at Erik Bottema's residence, the technician was ordered off his property.
April 8, 2010 |
A divided Public Utilities Commission on Thursday approved a request from Southern California Gas Co. to charge customers $1.05 billion to install radio-controlled smart meters on 6 million homes from Fresno to the Mexican border -- overriding criticism that the technology simply isn't needed. On a 3-2 vote, the regulatory panel backed a proposal by Commissioner Dian Grueneich to provide 20.5 million SoCalGas users with more real-time information about how much natural gas they are using to run furnaces, water heaters and stoves.
April 1, 2010 |
You probably have a mobile phone with a Bluetooth radio in it, and you may have a Wi-Fi network as well. Soon, you could be using a third wireless networking technology in your house. It's called ZigBee, and it eventually might find its way into more devices than Wi-Fi and Bluetooth combined. In the near term, you're likely to see it show up in the smart meters that utilities have begun to use and in the remote controls of high-end televisions. In the not-too-distant future, you could be using ZigBee networking to control the lights in your home, monitor your elderly parent's health or turn off your air conditioner during periods of peak energy use when no one's home.