May 21, 2014
Regarding Jonathan D. Libber's critique of smart meters ( "BGE Smart Meter fees amount to 'protection money,'" May 19), I think building a "smart grid" is probably a good thing, but I certainly can't applaud the utility's means of going about it. Attempts to sell customers on their supposedly newfound ability to lower utility bills are laughable. We know how to do that now: use less heat and AC, cook during off-hours, do the laundry at 3 a.m. But imposing a penalty for "opting out" is not funny; it's absolutely galling and has no place in the Free State.
May 19, 2014
By now, many people are aware that in order to opt out of a smart meter installation, an upfront fee of $75 - payable in three installations starting July 2014 - and an additional $11 to $17 per month will need to be paid, as ordered by the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC). While my organization, Maryland Smart Meter Awareness (MSMA), is certainly grateful that the PSC decided to grant a permanent opt out, the fees greatly undermine public choice as only those who can afford to pay will be able to opt out. Nevertheless, many people who for reasons of health, privacy or safety, would strongly prefer to keep their analog meter, will be forced to accept a smart meter due to these fees.
May 12, 2014
I could not agree more that there is a serious problem with installing utility company smart meters that have not been tested on animals for long term effects ( "Indoor meters present challenges in smart-meter rollout," April 28). I have heard many stories and have no idea if any are true or not. But what if they are? If you ask BGE there are no issues. However: I live in a condo and will have 13 meters behind the head of my bed. I have had cancer three times and am fairly certain that the radiation from my first cancer caused the third cancer.
April 28, 2014
Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. can't install smart meters for some customers because they don't want the technology, but the utility also faces a logistical challenge in tens of thousands of other cases: There's no way to get to the old meter to switch it out. BGE said it has about 200,000 customers whose meters are indoors and who haven't responded to calls, door-to-door visits or other contacts - neither making an appointment nor asking to...
April 22, 2014
Like it or not, a new generation of electric meters is on its way to Harford County. BGE has called the new devices smart meters, a name that appears to have been coined to capitalize on the popularity of smart phones, even as that tactic appears to have backfired in certain circles. At recent county community input meetings, a topic on the minds of a fair number of speakers has been a general disdain for the smart meters. The energy company assures its captive customers they can opt-out of the smart meters program - at least for the time being - but they'll have to pay an upfront fee of $75, plus an additional $11 a month to keep the old meters.
March 15, 2014
A Smart Meter was recently installed on my house. I was skeptical as to whether this would help me save energy. As it turns out, I think it is. I live in a house with heat pumps and programmable thermostats. I have long been leery of claims that a programmable thermostat would save me money. The theory is that if I turn down my heat at night I'll save money. The problem with this reasoning is that I have to turn the heat back up the next day, and I've always suspected that this process of reheating the house would use more energy than I saved by turning the heat down.