PUC Opinion

On December 19th the Maine PUC finally issued their long-awaited health and safety determination on smart meters. The 82 page decision was accompanied by a list of scientific studies accepted into evidence as Schedule A and by a list of lay-witness summaries as Schedule B. The decision includes an opinion from each commissioner.

Commissioner Littell wrote approximately 62 pages of thoughtful but ultimately tortured opinion. He thought well of our experts, recognized RF sensitivity was an issue for some people and thought those affected who supplied a letter to this effect from their physician, should have a no-cost opt out using a smart meter without transmitter [as distinct from the bulk of opt out customers who retain their analog meters]. The crux of Littell’s opinion was that while smart meters emit RF and RF may have biological effects, the exposure from smart meters is relatively small [when compared with a cell phone] and does not pose a credible risk of harm.

Commissioner Vannoy’s shorter opinion reflects the typical industry view where he disregarded the evidence and expert testimony we supplied and thought Maine should defer to the obsolete and irrelevant FCC guidelines from 1996. The final conclusion does not allow for Littell’s no-cost opt out.

Stay tuned for our response.