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Ky. Utility Companies Can Choose Between Advanced or “Smart” Meters to Monitor Usage


Utility companies in Kentucky will continue to have the choice of deciding whether to use advanced or “smart” meters to monitor their customers’ use of electricity.

The Kentucky Public Service Commission announced that decision Wednesday after considering whether to impose uniform standards for smart grid technology.

If the utility companies do use smart meters, they can decide if residential customers have the choice of opting out.

Andrew Melnykovych is a spokesman for the public service commission. He says there are basically two reasons people say they don’t want smart meters in their home. “The first one is there is a concern among some people that the electromagnetic radiation that some of these meters produce poses a health threat. Now there is no credible evidence to suggest that’s the case. But nevertheless, some people are concerned about it.”

He says the second concern residential customers express is that the detailed usage information that the advanced meters can provide poses a possible of invasion of privacy.

The order requires utility companies to develop plans to protect customer privacy.

Some of those details could allow residential customers to see their usage and cost in real time and cut back on electricity use to save money.

Rhonda Miller began as reporter and host for All Things Considered on WKU Public Radio in 2015. She has worked as Gulf Coast reporter for Mississippi Public Broadcasting, where she won Associated Press, Edward R. Murrow and Green Eyeshade awards for stories on dead sea turtles, health and legal issues arising from the 2010 BP oil spill and homeless veterans.
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