Futures Forum: The latest SidEnergy news: meeting Tues 24th February
Here is the movie's website:
Take Back Your Power: Investigating The "Smart" Grid [documentary]
And here is the trailer:
Take Back Your Power - YouTube
How aware are we of what's going on with the 'smart meter'?
The Energy Savings Trust think they're a good idea - but are aware of questions around them:
Are there any risks to consumers during the smart meter roll-out?Smart meters | Energy Saving Trust
The 'Big Energy' and 'Big Utility' companies think they're a good thing:
Smart Meter Upgrade - Control energy - British Gas
Smart meters - npower
There are, however, considerable concerns about this technology:
Opposition and concerns
Some groups have expressed concerns regarding the cost, health, fire risk, security and privacy effects of smart meters and the remote controllable "kill switch" that is included with most of them. Many of these concerns regard wireless-only smart meters with no home energy monitoring or control or safety features. Metering-only solutions, while popular with utilities because they fit existing business models and have cheap up-front capital costs, often result in such "backlash".
In BC Canada the electric utility is government owned and as such must comply with privacy laws that prevent the sale of data collected by smart meters, many parts of the world are serviced by private companies that are able to sell their data.In Australia debt collectors can make use of the data to know when people are at home. Used as evidence in a court case in Austin, Texas, Police agencies secretly collected thousands of residences' smart meter power usage data to determine which ones were using more power than "typical" in order to find "targets" to pursue in marijuana growing operations.
Lack of savings in results
There are questions whether electricity is or should be primarily a "when you need it" service where the inconvenience/cost-benefit ratio of time shifting of loads is poor. In the Chicago area Commonwealth Edison ran a test installing smart meters on 8,000 randomly selected households together with variable rates and rebates to encourage cutting back during peak usage. In the Crain's Chicago Business article Smart grid test underwhelms. In pilot, few power down to save money. it was reported that fewer than 9% exhibited any amount of peak usage reduction and that the overall amount of reduction was "statistically insignificant". This was from a report by the Electric Power Research Institute, a utility industry think tank who conducted the study and prepared the report. Susan Satter, senior assistant Illinois attorney general for public utilities said "It's devastating to their plan......The report shows zero statistically different result compared to business as usual." 
In the media
In 2013, Take Back Your Power, an independent Canadian documentary directed by Josh del Sol was released describing "dirty electricity" and the aforementioned issues with smart meters. The film explores the various contexts of the health, legal, and economic concerns, and features narration from mayor of Peterborough, Ontario, Daryl Bennett, as well as American researcher De-Kun Li, journalist Blake Levitt, and Dr. Sam Milham. It won a Leo Award for best feature-length documentary and the Annual Humanitarian Award from Indie Fest the following year.Smart meter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A campaign group sets out the arguments against:
Welcome to Stop Smart Meters! (UK)We encourage you to stand on your indefeasible human rights and to say a loud "NO!" to Smart Meters. Smart Meters are not mandatory - you are lawfully entitled to refuse one on whatever grounds you like. And if you would like to help other people do the same, please download and hand-out our leaflets to your neighbours and friends - this will make a huge difference in raising awareness about Smart Meters within your own community.
Stop Smart Meters! (UK)