Smart meters ‘a necessary step’ for BC Hydro

Disconnecting a customer’s electricity service is taken very seriously, and is always a last resort.

Editor: Since 2011, BC Hydro has been upgrading its electricity meters throughout the province. Completing the installations of the remaining meters is a necessary step so that all customers can benefit from a modern grid.

BC Hydro contacted the customer referred to in your March 26 story several times to let them know we required access to our equipment. Disconnecting a customer’s electricity service is taken very seriously, and is always a last resort.

The radio-frequency signals BC Hydro’s smart meters use to communicate are safe and similar to those used for decades by televisions, radios and other common household devices. B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer, Health Canada and the World Health Organization all confirm the wireless meters pose no known health risks.

In fact, independent testing shows a BC Hydro smart meter only communicates for about 1.4 seconds per day at a signal strength less than 0.5 per cent of Health Canada’s Safety Code 6, the official radio frequency exposure limit within Canada.

Once the new system is complete, the modernized grid will help BC Hydro improve its management of the electricity system, lower costs, reduce theft, encourage conservation and automatically detect outages.

Greg Alexis,

Smart Metering and Infrastructure,

BC Hydro

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