smart meter

California Water Authorities Using Smart Meter Data as Evidence to Impose Fines

The smart grid isn’t coming. It’s already here.

Everywhere people’s houses are being fitted if they already haven’t with smart electric meters and smart water meters. These meters communicate real-time usage data via radio frequency (which comes with its own set of health problems).

Essentially, consumption of utilities in your home is being big brother tracked and traced at all times on the smart grid.

Sure, it was sold to everyone as a “smart” solution for keeping consumption in check, that it would decrease utility bills because people could use it to check out how much they use and find smart ways to cut down. (How many people are really even doing that, by the way?)

Not only is this going to be used to serve up “peak pricing” models against the population — to price electricity and water higher during times of higher consumption by the population — it’s also going to be used to allow the people to tattle on themselves via their data, a set up that will come with heavy financial consequences.

As we can see happening now in California during its historic drought, smart meters are also being used by authorities to seek people out and impose fines.

CBS Los Angeles is reporting that water authorities are using smart meters against “water wasters”:

Water authorities are using a new tool in a major effort to crack down on people and businesses wasting water in light of new water restrictions issued by Gov. Jerry Brown to fight the drought.

The Long Beach Water Department says sprinklers at a McDonald’s restaurant on Bellflower Boulevard went on for 45 minutes at a time, twice a night, for an undefined number of nights. Complaints continued to mount as water pooled and wasted. The department, however, could do little about the wasting.

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