Some Worry About Naperville’s New ‘Smart Meters’

NAPERVILLE (CBS) — Naperville is making a switch next fall to wireless, “smart meter” technology to record electricity usage.

Because Naperville distributes its own power, those in favor of the switch say it will improve service. But CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov talked with one group convinced the switch could also be bad for their health.

Lisa Rooney is not a smart meter fan.

“We’re in support of the smart grid and the smart meters, we just want to make sure the final solution is a safe one,” she said.

Rooney is part of a vocal minority in Naperville raising concerns about the switch to a wireless electrical meter from the old analog models. Their biggest concern? The cumulative, long-term effects of electro-magnetic frequency used to transfer data, in addition to what already exists.

An additional layer could be the proverbial “straw that breaks the camel’s back,” says Jennifer Stahl. Critic Joanne St. Ives says there should be more research done on the technology.

Those wary of possible health risks base their concerns on research, like the Karolinska Institute’s Seletun report that states “adverse health effects can occur with prolonged exposure to very low-intensity emf.” 

Naperville’s community relations manager, Nadja Lalvani, says the $22 million conversion will improve energy efficiency, service and ultimately the cost to the city and customers. And she insists radio frequencies from smart meters are far less powerful than those from cell phones, Wi-Fi and even a baby monitor.

But what happens when you add another layer to the frequency emitted by those appliances?  Group members say that’s an unknown and they’re upset by their lack of choice in the matter.

Naperville officials say they are doing their best to address concerns and inform the public, but the conversion is going forward.

  • Jennifer Kilgore Stahl

    Thank you CBS for having us be part of your news. Residents and interested people can check out more on our website (and Facebook page of the same name)

  • CBS 2 Chicago News: Some Worry About Naperville’s New ‘Smart Meters’ » Naperville Smart Meter Awareness

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  • Bluplanet

    “Smart” meters have been on homes in my village in NY for 2-3 years. I became so ill from the radiation from the meter that I thought I might die. It was removed and the worst of my symptoms were relieved. Those of you who are smart enough to realize that “smart” meters are dangerous, are right. Do not let them be put on your homes.

  • Mark Young

    For $22M dollars of federal and local tax money, there is nothing to show for the smar meters. Why should Naperville get $11M of hard-earned tax $$$ from our fellow Americans? It was a bad idea for the Fed to invest in Smart anything.

    Naperville claims that this is the last tax $$$ to be spent on this project.

    That is doubtful. The only way this will be expanded in the future or added upon will not be by private industry but by govt yet again. This is going to be a sinkhole of tax $$$ and the main thing we will see from it is rolling blackouts and obtrusive govt control/recommendations about how we should use our power.

    Govt, keep your hands off my home. Stay out of my business. Why didn’t you use the $11mil of Naperville tax to pay for more police?

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