PG&E twists “SmartMeter” opt-out into involuntary opt-in to higher fees
This has nothing to do with travel. You've been warned. (Although it does have to do with privacy, and perhaps the 4th Amendment.)
Advice Letter 3278-G/4006-E is supposed to implement a CPUC order for PG&E to set up an "opt-out" program for PG&E customers who don't want to have a so-called "SmartMeter" installed at their homes.
Unfortunately, PG&E has gone far beyond the mandate of the CPUC's decision, and has proposed to create a legal presumption that if no one is home when PG&E makes a field visit to install a SmartMeter (my gas and electric meters are actually inside the house, as is typical in San Francisco), or whatever PG&E thinks is "reasonable" access isn't granted, the PG&E customer will be "deemed to have elected" to pay additional one-time and monthly fees for gas and electric service. The specific language in the PG&E Advice Letter which I have protested is as follows:
If PG&E makes a field visit to a customer's residence for purposes of installing a SmartMeterTM and the customer does not provide reasonable access to PG&E to install a SmartMeterTM after being provided notice of eligibility for service under this Opt-Out Program and not electing to opt-out, the customer shall be deemed to have elected service under this Opt-Out Program.
Along the way, there have been so many spurious (IMHO) objections to the "SmartMeter" scheme that what I see as real objections have been largely overlooked: A "SmartMeter" is actually a general-purpose digital radio transceiver including an unknown array of sensors, which would form a node in a PG&E wireless mesh data network. In other words, a "bug" that I would allow the utility to install inside my house, for its profit.
Anyway, since I'm not the owner of the house, I have no authority to authorize any such thing.
As I explain in part of my protest (in the extended entry below):Posted by Edward, 7 March 2012, 11:21