Myth: NV Energy will use smart meters to turn off appliances in your home
without your permission.
Fact: NV Energy simply does not have the capability to operate appliances inside a home or business. Smart meters aren't able to be used to turn off appliances. NV Energy may offer voluntary programs in the future that include Home Area Network Devices for inside the home that give customers the ability to control certain appliances.
Myth: Smart meters emit high levels of microwave radiation.
Fact: They do not emit any microwave radiation. They communicate using radio frequency (RF), which is a spectrum of electromagnetic field. However, RF is the same spectrum used by television and radio stations.
Myth: Smart meters will emit high levels of radio frequency radiation into
Fact: Smart meters emit using extremely low, infrequent signals. RF from smart meters is similar to common every day devices such as radios, cell phones, baby monitors, wireless networks, etc. Also, exposure levels decrease significantly as distance from the transmitter increases. RF also weakens as barriers such as building materials and meter enclosures enter its path.
Myth: NV Energy has not researched health effects of radio frequency.
Fact: Although research is ongoing, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says that available scientific evidence, including the World Health Organization (WHO) findings released May 17, 2010, shows no increased health risk due to radio frequency energy (RF), a form of electromagnetic radiation that is emitted by cell phones. The FDA also cites a separate National Cancer Institute program finding that despite the dramatic increase in cell phone use, occurrences of brain cancer did not increase between 1987 and 2005. FDA shares regulatory responsibility with the Federal Communications Commission, which has determined smart meters meet safety guidelines. Finally, smart meters do not operate at very close range and transmit significantly less RF than cell phones. NV Energy has identified other numerous third-party studies that are available on NVEnergize.com.
Myth: Like cell phones, smart meters transmit signal all the time.
Fact: Unlike cell phones, which are "on" all the time unless powered down, smart meters communicate and then "go to sleep." Smart meters typically communicate using RF signals 48 times per day. Each transmission is only a fraction of a second, which means smart meters transmit about 5 seconds per day on average.
Myth: NV Energy is installing smart meters so it can put tiered or
different rates in place.
Fact: Customers will not be forced into tiered or time of use rates. NV Energy will test different rate structures in order to offer customers choices that best suit their lifestyles and budgets. In addition, any changes in rates must be approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada. NV Energy is not permitted to randomly change rates.
Myth: Smart meters track or monitor individual appliances.
Fact: Smart meters do not identify electrical devices in the home or record when they are operated. Smart meters only record total energy usage, as does an older, analog meter.
Myth: Smart meters are surveillance devices.
Fact: Smart meters do not monitor household activity. They only record total energy usage for the home or business. The truth is older, analog meters also record energy usage. The advantage of a smart meter is that customers will have the ability have insights into how they are using energy and make choices that could result in savings on their bill.
Myth: Installation of a smart meter will automatically cause an increase
in customer bills.
Fact: Smart meters have been tested and proven to record energy usage accurately and do not cause higher bills. In most cases, higher bills can be attributed to changes in weather, timing of rates, older equipment malfunctions and human error.
Myth: Smart meters will give criminals access to personal data.
Fact: Smart meters send only energy usage data over secure, encrypted networks. They never send personal data. In addition, NV Energy never shares personal data with third parties unless required to do so by law.
Myth: Smart meters are being installed so utility companies can get more
money from customers
Fact: Combined with other tools such as online energy usage information, smart meters can be very useful in helping customers take control of their energy use, which can save money on monthly bills.
Myth: NV Energy will keep my energy usage information for an unlimited
period of time.
Fact: Customers can access historical energy usage data online for the previous 24 months. NV Energy's meter data management system will hold this data for a period of three years.