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Posted on February 13, 2014 Northeast Utilities (NU) operates New England’s largest utility system serving more than 3.6 million electric and natural gas customers in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire.

What is presented below is a summary of key points made by Northeast Utilities in its filing of January 17, 2014, with only slight editorial changes, for example, replacing the term “advanced metering infrastructure” with the term “smart meters.” Overall Perspective – No Rational Basis for Smart Meter Mandate .

Conversely, there is ample evidence that this technology choice will be unduly costly for customers and that the objectives of grid modernization are achievable with technologies and strategies that rank substantially higher in terms of cost-effectiveness.

For customers who will pay the price of this system, In fact, there is evidence to the contrary.

For example, industry studies show that only 46 percent of customers are aware of the concept of ‘smart metering,’ and of that percentage, 33 percent associate smart metering with complaints of meter inaccuracy, higher customer bills, invasion of privacy and health concerns.

“[H]ome energy automation solutions like smart thermostats and appliances are advancing at a rapid pace and, in many cases, are leverage existing communications infrastructure such as broadband internet.

For mandating

Rather than duplicating these expenditures and predetermining that the preferred communication should be enabled through the As identified by Northeast Utilities, …

[a smart meter] roll-out is problematic due to the extraordinary cost associated with, at best, a modest increase in functionality.” “Northeast Utilities estimates, conservatively, that the price tag for a [smart meter] rollout, including the recovery of existing investment on the Companies’ books would likely approach, and possibly exceed,

Rather than duplicating these expenditures and predetermining that the preferred communication should be enabled through the As identified by Northeast Utilities, …

[a smart meter] roll-out is problematic due to the extraordinary cost associated with, at best, a modest increase in functionality.” “Northeast Utilities estimates, conservatively, that the price tag for a [smart meter] rollout, including the recovery of existing investment on the Companies’ books would likely approach, and possibly exceed, $1 billion over the course of …

implementation – all of which is to be borne by customers ; metering systems are not the only option for optimizing demand or reducing system and customer costs; and metering systems are not necessary to integrate distributed resources [such as wind or solar] or to improve workforce and asset management.

Therefore, it is that advanced metering functionality is a ‘basic technology platform’ that must be in place before all of the benefits of grid modernization can be fully realized.” “Accordingly, not only is there a flaw in the …

premise that an advanced metering system is a ‘basic technology platform’ for grid modernization, but also the implementation of a costly, advanced metering system is at odds with policies designed to promote the growth of distributed energy resources.” “Immense, near-term investments in [smart meters] should without (1) methodical, valid analysis of the associated costs and benefits; and (2) the development of a plan to solve the detrimental impact of cost-shifting driven by the pervasive installation of distributed energy resources.” .

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Rather than duplicating these expenditures and predetermining that the preferred communication should be enabled through the As identified by Northeast Utilities, …[a smart meter] roll-out is problematic due to the extraordinary cost associated with, at best, a modest increase in functionality.” “Northeast Utilities estimates, conservatively, that the price tag for a [smart meter] rollout, including the recovery of existing investment on the Companies’ books would likely approach, and possibly exceed, $1 billion over the course of …implementation – all of which is to be borne by customers ; metering systems are not the only option for optimizing demand or reducing system and customer costs; and metering systems are not necessary to integrate distributed resources [such as wind or solar] or to improve workforce and asset management.Therefore, it is that advanced metering functionality is a ‘basic technology platform’ that must be in place before all of the benefits of grid modernization can be fully realized.” “Accordingly, not only is there a flaw in the …premise that an advanced metering system is a ‘basic technology platform’ for grid modernization, but also the implementation of a costly, advanced metering system is at odds with policies designed to promote the growth of distributed energy resources.” “Immense, near-term investments in [smart meters] should without (1) methodical, valid analysis of the associated costs and benefits; and (2) the development of a plan to solve the detrimental impact of cost-shifting driven by the pervasive installation of distributed energy resources.” .Currently, the only mandatory standard for electric distribution company cyber-security is the North American Electric Reliability Corporation Critical Infrastructure Protection (‘NERCCIP’), which applies to the electric distribution systems and metering infrastructure…” Smart Meter Technology May Soon Be Rendered Obsolete “Last, but not least, there is little confidence that the incremental benefits of moving to a [smart meter] platform will be sufficient to warrant the cost.School uniform polices, often associated with private schools, are increasingly being adopted in public schools; but not without controversy.The often asserted reasons for mandating uniforms include improved student behavior, better attendance, less competition over clothing, and improved student learning because students would not be distracted by who was wearing what and could focus on their studies. However, opponents assert that a mandated uniform seeks to homogenize the students, violates their free speech rights, and does not solve the problems the policy is intended to remedy. Irene Peters Endowed Professor of Education spent eighteen years in the public schools serving as a teacher, principal, director of personnel & labor relations, and superintendent.He studies and teaches school law and labor relations at the University of New Hampshire.is the Paul Burdin Endowed Professor of Education at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.Previously, he was professor and Mike Moses Endowed Chair in Educational Leadership at the University of North Texas, Professor and Chair at the University of Houston, and professor and associate dean at Louisiana State University.

billion over the course of …

implementation – all of which is to be borne by customers ; metering systems are not the only option for optimizing demand or reducing system and customer costs; and metering systems are not necessary to integrate distributed resources [such as wind or solar] or to improve workforce and asset management.

Therefore, it is that advanced metering functionality is a ‘basic technology platform’ that must be in place before all of the benefits of grid modernization can be fully realized.” “Accordingly, not only is there a flaw in the …

premise that an advanced metering system is a ‘basic technology platform’ for grid modernization, but also the implementation of a costly, advanced metering system is at odds with policies designed to promote the growth of distributed energy resources.” “Immense, near-term investments in [smart meters] should without (1) methodical, valid analysis of the associated costs and benefits; and (2) the development of a plan to solve the detrimental impact of cost-shifting driven by the pervasive installation of distributed energy resources.” .

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