How is it that so many intelligent, inside-the-beltway environmentalists are buying into an eco-health-safety-finance debacle with the potential to increase energy consumption, endanger the environment, harm public health, diminish privacy, make the national utility grid more insecure, cause job losses, and make energy markets more speculative?
Answer: by not doing their homework.
Welcome to the Smart Grid -- a government-funded money machine capable of intruding into every aspect of our lives. Smart Grid technologies -- initially funded to the tune of $3.4 billion through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and slated to cost $11 billion through 2011 -- are enough to make even die-hard liberals demand a claw back of misspent tax dollars.
On the surface, Smart Grids sound ‘green’ -- with promises of saving energy, creating new power-line corridors run on wind and solar, way-stations to power-up electric vehicles, energy-efficient upgrades to an aging power infrastructure, and real-time customer knowledge of electricity use.
And there’s the enticing communications factor: a nationwide high-speed broadband information technology barreling down high-tension electric corridors called Broadband-Over-Power-Lines (BPL). What could be more perfect for communicating facts about the planet, funding enviro-candidates, pushing legislation, and organizing Earth Days?
But few who actually study how these new systems function want anything to do with them. Other than those who stand to make enormous profits and the physicists or engineers who dream up such stuff, Smart Grids are giving knowledgeable people the willies.