BC Mayors Vote Against Controversial Smart Meters

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VANCOUVER – Delegates at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Vancouver have voted narrowly in favour of moratorium on BC Hydro smart meters, reported Canadian Press.

The vote was 55 per cent in favour of the moratorium on smart meters and 45 against.

However, Energy Minister Rich Coleman has said the government will proceed with the billion-dollar program anyway, calling the meters the global standard for a modern power grid.

But Colwood Coun. Judith Cullington said city councils across the province have been deluged in email by people deeply concerned about the possible health impacts.

“There is an important element of personal choice,” Colwood Coun. Judith Cullington said. “Some people are sensitive to this radiation and only a small amount affects them.”

The meters measure residents’ power consumption and then use wireless signals to beam that information back to BC Hydro.

Some opponents fear the units will release too much radiation but Hydro says living next to a smart meter for 20 years would expose a resident to the same level of radiation as a 30-minute cellphone call.

The utility says the new technology will make the province’s energy grid more efficient, sustainable and better able to respond to outages.

The campaign to derail B.C. Hydro’s rollout of wireless smart meters got a boost from mayors and councillors at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention Friday.