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The world is facing a new age of technological advancements – and a new set of health risks as a result.
In the name of efficiency and convenience, smart gadgets like smart homes with smart meters and smartphones are on the rise.
Such devices allow cities to not only communicate between people but also among things.
However, amidst the benefits that humanity has reaped from interaction of humans and technology, there lies an untold risk.
The smart meters have helped utility companies when it comes to automation, but their benefits stop there.
How Can Smart Meters Be Dangerous?
Many experts are coming out saying smart meters are not only not safe, but harmful to the environment and often inaccurate.
Smart meters also interfere with personal privacy and security, which is kinda scary if you rely heavily on the so-called “Internet of Things.”
But the primary threat of smart meters remains the fact that they emit electromagnetic frequency radiation.
What is electromagnetic frequency radiation?
EMFs, for short, are areas of force invisible to the naked eye. They are emitted by both natural and man-made sources, the latter of which can impact human health in many ways, even causing cancer.
Is EMF globally recognized as harmful?
The World Health Organization notes that electromagnetic fields (at certain levels) can trigger some symptoms like headaches, stress, suicide by depression, vomiting, fatigue, and even loss of libido.
In addition, the carcinogenic nature of EMFs urged the World Health Organization (WHO) to err on the side of caution, and label it a possible carcinogen.
Hence, there is global recognition that EMF radiation is a health risk that warrants more research.
I believe that EMF, such as is emitted by smart meters, is an invisible and silent killer, costing people their money, their privacy, and their health in the long run.
Most Common Smart Meter Health Complaints
Studies were conducted to discover the effects of smart meters on human health. Most of the symptoms reported involve:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Ringing in the ears
- Cardiac arrhythmia
- Poor immune function
- Declining cognitive function
These symptoms are described by the World Health Organization as “electromagnetic hypersensitivity” or EHS.
The term refers to a group of non-specific symptoms that certain sensitive individuals (like myself) feel when exposed to excess EMF.
Symptoms range from dermatological to psychological impacts.
What Does the Research Say?
Several studies have examined the anecdotal cases of ill health that stems from radiation exposure from smart meters, wi-fi, and other sources.
Let’s look at a few:
Sleep disturbances in the vicinity of Schwarzenberg, Switzerland were recorded by Theodor Abelin and his research team of the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, University of Berne.
This paper suggests that there is a strong relationship between transmitters and sleep disturbance, proving EMF is disruptive.
“The case study on symptom development from exposure to radiofrequency fields of wireless smart meters in Victoria, Australia.”
The context behind this study is the mandate by the Australian government to roll out smart meters in Victoria. This action increased the risk of public exposure to artificial, high-frequency radiation.
By August 2013, roughly 142 people had submitted reports through the public portal about adverse health effects from their wireless smart meters.
The study by Dr. Federica Lamech published in 2014 focused on evaluating the reports to find out the types of symptoms that Victorian residents were developing from exposure to smart meters.
The symptoms these people experienced were found to have a significant impact on their quality of life.
“Smart Meter Health Effects Survey of Maine”
Richard Conrad, Ph.D., and Ed Friedman designed a survey to determine the health effects and prevailing symptoms that many people have attributed to smart meters.
This was also to confirm if these exposures were really caused by EMF or not.
The survey was conducted by collecting testimonials of personal experiences with smart meters, which was achieved with a 50-item questionnaire.
The number of completed surveys received and used for analysis was 210 – mostly from the US but some from Canada and Australia as well.
The number of people reporting some form of electrical sensitivity doubled from 32.9% before smart meter installation to 67.6% after.
“Public health and the radio frequency radiation emitted by cellphone technology, smart meters, and WiFi (New Zealand)”
This paper by Dr. Pockett of the University of Auckland argued that the prevailing official narrative in New Zealand against the relationship between public health and radio frequency emissions (RF) from smart meters is scientifically and ethically flawed.
Of course, the “official” documents ignored the causation of such symptoms, simply denying a link whatsoever.
The evidence for harmful effects of RF continues to be ignored.
Furthermore, studies that do find a harmful effect of RF radiation are not invalidated by others studies that fail to find an effect.
Studies that clash must engage and contribute to the development of a more justified conclusion, but most governments are failing to do so.
Hence this paper concluded that a precautionary approach is at the very least justified, with a number of specific recommendations on how to start implementing protection strategies.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are smart meters required by law?
The government requires that smart meters be offered by energy suppliers to all small businesses and homes. However, smart meters are not a legal requirement for consumers.
With that said, smart meters are quickly becoming the norm, and utility companies are making it increasingly difficult to turn them down.
Can I refuse to have a smart meter?
Since it is not a compulsory mandate to have smart meters installed in your home, you have every right to refuse its installment.
Who can I contact to protest smart meters?
You can contact your energy provider and opt out of the installation (they’ll probably charge a fee). If they give you problems, you can call your local city government. There are also a growing number of local rights groups popping up, so ask around for those.
How can I shield my home from smart meter radiation?
We have an entire article about protecting your home from smart meter radiation that you can read here.
Are smart meters accurate?
They claim to be and are for the most part. But as is the case with anything tech, glitches happen.
Do smart meters cause cancer?
Potentially. It takes long-term, low-grade exposure to impact cells, however. But EMF radiation does generate waves that are inherently carcinogenic.
I hope this guide opened your eyes to the dangers of smart meters and their threat to your health. If you can’t switch to an analog meter, check out your options for covers here.
For more information, check out our related guides:
Certified EMF Expert, Chief Editor & Researcher at Beat EMF. I’m in charge of testing all the products and sorting through the duds to deliver effective EMF solutions for your family. Learn more about me here.