Tag Archives: grant

Clearing the Air on the Oklahoma E-cigarette War

Kaye Beach

Feb. 11, 2014

Recently I wrote an article for The Oklahoma Constitution on the politics and money behind the e-cigarette bans in our state.

Many credible health experts have also noted a curious imbalance regarding the claims made by some public health advocates about
e-cigarette health dangers. . . .  Judging from the reaction to the sudden spate of prohibitions on vaping in our state, the public t buying the hype either. What most people want to know is,  why are they being banned? Who is being hurt by the use of an electronic cigarette? . . . This innovative technology is not a threat to public health but is a grave threat to the entire multi-billion tobacco industry as it exists today.

. . .You’ll find TSET grant funding everything from OETA to bike racks, but let’s look at the “Communities of Excellence in Tobacco Control” incentive grants that are driving the vapor bans.

You can read the article ‘Clearing the Air on the Oklahoma E-cigarette War’ in its entirety  at The Oklahoma Constitution.

Also, you may want to see this rebuttal to the OK. State Dept. of Health’s alarmist e-cigarette advisory. FINAL OSDH rebuttal 2 9 2014

And if you haven’t done it yet, subscribe to The Oklahoma Constitution!

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Concerns About OG&E SMart Meters: Privacy, Security, Reliability

Kaye Beach

Jan 5, 2012

Last week I told you that I have been learning as much as I can about OG&E’s smart meter rollout from conversations with a gentleman that has an extensive background in areas relevant to smart meters/smart grid.  Let’s just call him ‘Stephan’.  Stephan is an electrical engineer and published author with dozens of patents in digital communications and network storage.  He is the founder, contributor and executive for multiple hi-tech companies including an internet company and he has decades of service to his credit on National Standards Committees.

A smart meter is usually an electrical meter that records consumption of electric energy in intervals of an hour or less and communicates that information at least daily back to the utility for monitoring and billing purposes.[7] Smart meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system. Unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting. Such an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) differs from traditional automatic meter reading (AMR) in that it enables two-way communications with the meterFrom wikipedia

In Pressing Issues About OG&E’s Smart Meter Rollout, I hit on some of the most obvious concerns about this program and covered where the authority to force consumers to accept the meters come from.  The authority for OG&E to implement the system on each home  is derived from, not from state of federal statute, but from rules promulgated by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission

There is no federal mandate that requires that smart meters be installed.  However, relevant federal law does favor smart meters, smart grid, time based pricing by providing grants to states incentivize adoption of smart meters/grid.

Smart grid has been a priority of the Obama administration. The Department of Energy awarded 100 grants totaling $3.4 billion for smart grid projects. Many of them have been used to install smart meters in states like California, Texas, Maryland and Connecticut.  http://business380.com/2011/11/21/alliant-midamerican-in-no-rush-to-embrace-smart-meters/

This is true in Oklahoma as well. 

The primary reason given for OG&E’s desire to move forward with the smart meters was plainly stated to be mostly due to the availability of millions in federal stimulus funds.

Some customers believe the Corporation Commission allowed OG&E to jump too quickly for the carrot dangled by the Department of Energy to the detriment of their captive ratepayers.

There are a variety of technologies available to the utilities that can be used  to operate the smart meters but OG&E picked the more privacy invasive of these technologies.  Stephan contrasts OG&E’s choice of technology to that of the OEC (Oklahoma Electric Cooperative) which is not as privacy intrusive as that of OG&E.

OEC, explains Stephan, does not use an RF “mesh” to transmit data to the utility.  Instead, it uses existing power lines to transmit signals.  He explains that with OG&E’s system every home is required to have a meter that contains a 900 MHz radio and a 2.3GHz radio.  Those radios are always on in listening mode.  OG&E’s implementation will transmit data from each home at least once every 4 hours, and as often as once per hour.

Unfortunately, we do not have the option of voting with our wallets.  If you are an OG&E customer, you are stuck with the new digital meters.

I asked Stephan to look at the Oklahoma Corporation Commission’s ‘Commonly Asked Questions About Smart Meters’ document and see if he agreed with the information provided.

Here are some of the major disagreements with the document that Stephan outlined for me.

Do Smart meters relay my personal information?

OCC says;

No. No personal information is displayed on the outside or contained in the new meter. Your account number, address, and personal information are never transmitted by the meter. Smart meters relay a code that is associated with your account along with usage information on a 15 minute interval. The data transmitted by the meter is also encrypted for your protection.

Stephan says;

Yes.

Every data transmission from a Smart meter to the utility contains an identifying meter number.  That meter number is uniquely attached to your account, so every transmission from a Smart meter contains personal information.

Any information that contains an identifying number is classified as personal information.  That includes your social security number, your driver’s license number, your employee badge number, your license plate number, and in this case, your Meter number.  There exists a database which links the meter number with name, address, useage, payments, etc.  While that database is not publically accessible, there are numerous instances where databases and servers have been hacked.  It is Naïve and Foolish to believe that any database is totally secure.  Even if great lengths have been taken to protect the data as it goes into the database, there is no way to protect the data from those that actually control the database.  Databases can be hacked from the inside as well as the outside.

Are smart meters secure from electronic attacks?

The OCC says;

Yes.

Security is of concern to the Commission when considering Smart meter projects. To date, the programs approved have been subject to extensive third party testing. Again, it is also important to remember that no personal or account data is transmitted by the Smart meter.

Stephan says;

No. At least not the ones being used by OG&E.  

No wireless electronic device can be secure from electronic attacks.  Just as no mechanical device can be secure from an explosion.  The issue with electronic attacks is that they are often undetected and can also cover a very large number of devices simultaneously.

Electronic attacks can take several forms.

(a)  Direct interception of data

(b)  Hijacking data input or output

(c)  “Man-in-the-Middle” attacks

(d)  Hijacking of the meter and re-programming

(e)  Viruses

(f)   EMP

(g)  Ability to monitor several properties electronically to check for patterns indicating no one home during the day or vacation mode.

Most important, even if the data transmission itself is secure, the data will eventually reside on a server somewhere.  Servers containing banking information and credit card information are routinely hacked.  Utilities are hacked.  Satellites are hacked.  Military drones are hacked.  The only information that cannot somehow be compromised is information that is never transmitted or stored.

Stephan adds and answers an important question not addressed by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission’s FAQ.

 What are the security risks of Smart meters?

1.                   Data interception and decoding by hackers. There is no such thing as a secure wireless network.  There are many techniques to capture data, decrypt it and analyze it.  The “mesh” network is particularly insidious from a security standpoint because any person in the area, in a home, a car, or business can monitor hundreds of homes simultaneously.  Hackers are remarkably adept at obtaining tools, and radios that operate on the 900 MHz band are readily available.

2.                   What else operates on the 900 MHz band?  Garage Door openers, TV and satellite remotes, Cordless phones, WIFI.  The meter radio is always on and will detect activation of any consumer device within the home.  It may not be able to decode it, but consumer devices have signatures that can be used to locate proximity and timing.

3.                   Viruses.  Viruses are devious pieces of software that are usually undetected during normal operation, but that activate based on specific criteria.  The Smart meter contains downloadable code capability, which means that the software that operates the meter can be updated over the wireless network.  A sufficiently sophisticated virus could cause all meters to shut down at a certain time on a certain day, for example, and then not turn back on again.  The utility company would have to manually repair or replace every meter in the entire network one by one in order to restore power.

4.                   The expected service life of these meters is in the range of 20 years or so.  It is naïve to believe that decrypting technology will not exist within that timeframe that will expose the network and every homeowner to serious and irreparable harm.

Will smart meters let the utility or other entities know what appliances I am using or what television programming I am watching?

[I am not aware of any allegation that smart meters allow your television programming to be monitored and neither is Stephan.  We will overlook that apparent red herring and just address the real issue of whether or not the new smart meters can enable the utility or others to discern what appliances are being used by the occupant. kb]

The OCC says;

No. Consumer privacy is very important to the Commission. The Smart meter only transmits total power consumed in 15 minute intervals. While advanced Smart meter systems that track “per appliance” usage will be available in the future, the program will be voluntary and will only show the power consumed.

But Stephan says;

Yes. 

Even if an appliance doesn’t send a signal to the smart meter directly, the energy used by each appliance has a signature that can be identified.  Think of being able to know which of your neighbors is driving down the street based upon the noise of their car.  With a little experience, you can detect the sound of the muffler or breaks.  You can tell the difference between a motor cycle and an automobile and a Semi-truck by the way they sound.  Likewise, a great deal of information can be inferred about an appliance’s use by looking at a residence’s electrical profile.

The profile is essentially a summation of all of the current being used by all of the appliances and you can easily break them apart and figure out which appliance is being used.  For example, a refrigerator operating in a fixed temperature environment when no one is at home will cycle on and off at a predictable frequency.  It is just a motor that draws a fixed current for a period of time.  Likewise, an air conditioner will cycle for a period of time, then turn off, then cycle again.  The A/C will cycle more frequency as it gets hotter outside and there is more heat loss from the residence.  If a set-back thermostat is being used, then A/C profile will look different.  When the temperature is raised by the set-back thermostat, there will be a long delay without the A/C cycling.  It will then cycle periodically throughout the day.  When the set-back thermostat adjusts the temperature to cool the residence in preparation for the family’s return, there will be an unusually long cycle while the house cools down.  An oven or stove has an identifiable profile as do most appliances – even televisions and washers and dryers.

Hence, by knowing the profile of the energy use, a great deal can be inferred about the occupancy of the home.  Likewise, comparing energy profiles from day to day, an analyst can easily tell if the residents are on vacation and have turned the A/C up to save energy.

Stephan explains that, the goal of the Smart grid is to makes consumer’s consumption dependent upon the weather.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t like the sound of that.

Here are the facts.

1)      Our energy comes from 2 sources – electrical plants and renewable sources such as windmills and solar cells.

2)      Renewable energy sources are very unreliable.  They are highly dependent upon weather patterns.

3)      One of the objectives of the Smart Grid is to make consumption more closely match variable generation.  In other words, the power that you are allowed to use depends on the weather.

Stephan explains further that, power plant construction has been severely curtailed and it takes approximately 11 years to build a coal-fired power plant.  A great deal of money and effort over the past few years has gone into “green energy”.  However, as utilities are now discovering, because the energy is unreliable, it cannot replace power plants.  The goal of the Smart grid is to makes consumer’s consumption dependent upon the weather.

The true cost of windmill and photovoltaic energy has never been reasonably figured into the cost equation.  According to OG&E’s estimates, up to 40% of the power generated by windmills is unusable because it is not consistent.  Any person that has even looked at a PhotoVoltaic off-grid system understands that the photo cells are only a part of the cost, there is also the cost of energy storage in the form of batteries, and a back-up generator for periods of extraordinary use or cloudy days.

In short, renewable energy sources can be a small supplement for energy use, but can never be depended upon for normal production.  It does not save the building of power plants as those plants will need to be built anyway for periods when the wind isn’t blower or there are cloudy days.  The cost of renewable energy is actually several times more than the capital costs of installation divided by the energy produced as you still have to have a backup power source.

OG&E has already deferred the building of one new power plant.(the stated goal is to defer two plants)

Reducing Peak Demand to Defer Power Plant Construction in Oklahoma


 Are we setting ourselves up for exactly what Stephan is warning us about; that our power will become dependent on whether or not the sun shines or the wind blows?

He warns

“There is a law of unintended consequences.  Whenever a monopolistic enterprise attempts to enforce a specific solution on the populace without the self-correcting action of the free market, or tramples upon the right of privacy or consumer choice, there will be consequences.  They may be political, sociological, medical, financial, or can contribute to the loss of life and liberty.  It is our duty to find solutions to our problems that do not infringe upon the liberties of the individual or the sanctity of the home.”

In the next article I will cover some of the possible unintended consequences of the Smart Meter/Grid system that OG&E is currently implementing as well as some specific legal issues that must be addressed.

OG&E Smart Meters – Controlling the Consumer

Kaye Beach

Dec, 6 2011

The more I look, the less I find to like about smart meters.

Personally speaking, my biggest concern is the privacy issues. Smart meters brings the prying eyes of corporations and the government right into your very home.

 

EPIC, the Electronic Privacy Information Center on Smart Meter privacy issues;

Privacy implications for smart grid technology deployment centers on the collection, retention, sharing, or reuse of electricity consumption information on individuals, homes, or offices. Fundamentally, smart grid systems will be multi-directional communications and energy transfer networks that enable electricity service providers, consumers, or third party energy management assistance programs to access consumption data. Further, if plans for national or transnational electric utility smart grid systems proceed as currently proposed these far reaching networks will enable data collection and sharing across platforms and great distances.

A list of potential privacy consequences of Smart Grid systems include:

  • Identity Theft
  • Determine Personal Behavior Patterns
  • Determine Specific Appliances Used
  • Perform Real-Time Surveillance
  • Reveal Activities Through Residual Data
  • Targeted Home Invasions (latch key children, elderly, etc.)
  • Provide Accidental Invasions
  • Activity Censorship
  • Decisions and Actions Based Upon Inaccurate Data
  • Profiling
  • Unwanted Publicity and Embarrassment
  • Tracking Behavior Of Renters/Leasers
  • Behavior Tracking (possible combination with Personal Behavior Patterns)
  • Public Aggregated Searches Revealing Individual Behavior

Read more from EPIC, the Electronic Privacy Information Center http://epic.org/privacy/smartgrid/smartgrid.html

 

OG&E Positive Energy® Smart Grid

OG&E is building the Positive Energy® Smart Grid in partnership with customers to improve energy efficiency. As the technology continues to rollout across OG&E’s service territory, it not only helps Oklahomans use energy more wisely, but it helps us meet the growing demand for energy and the desire for environmental stewardship.

The smart grid uses a secure wireless network for two-way, real-time communication with smart meters installed on the outside of customer homes. In the future, that meter could communicate with programmable thermostats or other technology inside customers’ homes.

http://www.oge.com/environment/EnergyEfficiency/Pages/Smart%20Grid.aspx

Federal Funds Push Oklahoma Deployment

Norman Oklahoma began deployment of smart meters in a program study which began January 1st, 2010.  OG&E planned to extend its Smart Power rollout to all of its customers beginning in 2012 contingent upon the success of the Norman study and after approval from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.  But that is not what happened.

On Dec 29, 2009 OG&E received a grant from the Dept. of Energy for $130 Million.

“The Company’s original plan was to review the results from the Phase 11 Norman Project and then perhaps within five years establish system wide deployment, however, after applying for and receiving the grant of $130 million in 2009 from the DOE, OG&E’s timeline for deployment of Smart Grid was moved up.  OG&E saw the additional funding by the DOE as an opportunity to move sooner rather than later, on the deployment of system wide Smart Grid technology, even prior to receiving the study results from the Norman Project.”

Q: What were the results of the SmartPower project in Norman?

A: Since, the Norman project will not be fully implemented until June of 2010, there are and were no results from that project at the time this Application for pre-approval was filed.

 

Q: Why is OG&E requesting pre-approval to move forward with Company wide deployment before the Norman Project (Phase I) is completed ?

A: The Company believes a window of opportunity was created for further deployment in 2009, with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) which contained an estimated $3 .4 billion in stimulus grant funding for Smart Grid investment.

Responsive Testimony of Tonya Hinex-Ford for Oklahoma Corporation Commission 05-21-10

OG&E’s full rollout of the smart meter/smart grid is not based on any actual significant evidence that this technology is a wise choice for Oklahoma, that it would save energy or money, but rather because of the opportunity to for OG&E to receive millions in federal funds.

OGE in Oklahoma City, Okla, $130 million grant, “Oklahoma IOU plows ahead with system-wide project plans,” (SGT, 2009-Aug-25);

COMPLAINTS

I received a call from a gentleman last week who told me how he was pressured by an OG&E meter reader to install a smart meter on his house.  This man has a notice on his current analog meter stating that he does not want a smart meter installed and he has sent in a certified letter stating the same to OG&E.  The OG&E employee at first refused to give his name or to call his supervisor as requested by the homeowner but finally relented and the smart meter was not installed on the man’s home.

If you have a complaint about your smart meter in Oklahoma, you can file a complaint with the Corporation Commission at  www.occeweb.com  Click on “Complaints”  “Public Utilities” and fill out the form.

One lady in central Oklahoma submitted her concerns to the Corporation Commission and asked about relocating the meter on her house.  She shared the response with us.

Thank you for your e-mailed correspondence regarding Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company (OG&E).

I have reviewed your concerns regarding Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company (OG&E) and I understand your objection to the implementation of the Smart Meter Program.

However, there are no provisions that allow a consumer to opt out of the use of a smart meter. (Emphasis added) Additionally, if a meter is moved for the convenience of a consumer, in accordance with the rules of the Commission, the consumer will bear that cost.

However, as a courtesy, I have forwarded this matter to the Company for review. You may be contacted by a representative of the Company to further discuss your concerns.

I hope that this matter can be resolved to your satisfaction.

Respectfully,

K. Dobbins

Kimberly Dobbins, Manager
Oklahoma Corporation Commission
Consumer Services Division
Public Utility Complaints

Oklahoma Smart Meter/Grid – Just Trust Us

People are being told that Oklahoma’s Smart Meter/Grid system is substantially different from systems in states. Concerns about privacy, safety and health are being downplayed.   I have seen no evidence that this is true but will be following up on these claims.

Here is what a little research into the system being utilized by OG&E turns up;

OG&E has selected Acatel-Lucent to build its communication system for the smart grid.

OG&E, Alcatel-Lucent, Osmose and ABB] OG&E selects communications, field inventory and DMS partners for smart grid

Alcatel-Lucent will work with OG&E’s WAN team to build a multi-tiered IP/MPLS communications network across the utility’s 30,000 square mile service territory. The network will include a 6.0 gigahertz, point-to-point microwave backbone system, plus a 3.65 gigahertz point-to-multipoint layer. The WAN will transport two-way data traffic from smart devices on the power delivery distribution system to enable real-time automation and advanced metering.

http://www.freezepage.com/1322596800SOCPXHYKEH

Besides being two way communication devices, another  fact to remember about smart meters is that they to whatever degree that they do work to reduce your energy use is by changing your behavior.

Smart metering

Smart metering is primarily intended to make consumers more conscious of energy consumption, thus leading to reduced consumption during peak periods and an overall reduction in the production of greenhouse gases.

Informing the user is merely the first step: facilitating the desired action by consumers requires two other capabilities:

  • The use of tariffs to encourage energy consciousness (whereby high instantaneous demand during periods of peak demand is charged a premium price)
  • Direct control of major household appliances

A fuller exploration of these topics can be found in the Alcatel-Lucent white paper, Smart Metering – Enabling Greater Energy Efficiency.2

CONTROL

In this Alcatel-Lucent strategic whitepaper, they are marketing to utilities the dream of controlling the consumer.

CONTROLLING THE CONSUMER

In the long-term, we can envisage distributors or energy retailers wanting to be able to incent customers to allow them to control non-essential demand.

For example, in exchange for a favorable tariff, the customer would allow the distributor to regulate their air-conditioning in order to shed load at times of excessive demand.

This is not a dream. The technology is ready. Domestic appliance manufacturers are starting to implement standard remote control protocols that would enable this sort of control. All that is required is the political will and a rollout of enabled smart meters.

Read more

“Incent” or Coerce?

Can they incent you into giving up control over your air conditioner?

First of all, I don’t think incent is even a word. But I am sure that with the right incentives they can get you to do a lot of things you you’d prefer not to do. “Incent” or incentivize, in my opinion, is a stand in for a more appropriate term such as “coerce”.  They can make it completely unaffordable for those who prefer to continue to set their own thermostats controls themselves but that strikes me as a negative method which deserves a negative term like “coerce”

 

Alcatel-Lucent gives the features and benefits of smart meter technology;

RECORDING USAGE DATA

Maintain data records of the usage within the meter at configured intervals for a set amount of time.

REMOTE INTERVAL METER READING

Interrogating the meter usage data at configured intervals ranging from 15 minutes to every three months.

REMOTE ONE-OFF METER READING

Interrogating the meter usage data on an ad-hoc basis.

REMOTE METER ACTIVATION, SUSPENSION, AND DEACTIVATION

The ability to configure a meter to be off (deactivated and not assigned to a customer account), to be on with a configured maximum capacity, and to be suspended (deactivated but remaining configured to a customer account).

CUSTOMER INFORMATION ON CURRENT AND HISTORIC CONSUMPTION

Providing a display unit (probably remotely from the meter itself). Equally this could be a web interface to the customers account.

Network Monitoring/

Demand Response

Multi utility

Metering

2-way Communication

Monitoring

Intelligent House

Devices

Intelligent Energy

Management

METER DATA MANAGEMENT

Assembling and storing the data received from each customer, partitioning it by customer, by customer type, by geography, by retailer (if appropriate), etc. Providing the statistics required to manage the service (for example, gross demand from a given geography by time over a given period, gross demand by customer type over a given period, etc.)

Formatting for transmission to the retailer (if appropriate), archive management.

FLEXIBLE TARIFFING AND RATING

Applying the tariff plan appropriate to that customer, customer type, retailer, etc. and creating the appropriate billing records for onward transmission to the customer.

REAL-TIME TARIFFING AND RATING

Applying the above in real-time. This is of great importance in the case of pre-paid metering.

CREDIT LIMIT CONTROL

Implementing a rules-based decision tree when credit expires or a credit limit is reached dependent upon customer, customer type, retailer, etc.

CAPACITY REGULATION

This can include the temporary reduction of power to a “social minimum” where credit becomes an issue or configuring the meter to suit the circumstances of the particular customer.

LOSS OF POWER NOTIFICATION

In the case of power outages, the meter can transmit a “last gasp” that alerts the distributor to a failure in the network.

REMOTE DEVICE READING AND CONTROL

In the longer term, there is the ability to register remote devices in the premises, to read their configuration and, upon suitable authority, to regulate them. The example, cited above, of raising the temperature of air-conditioning is a typical application. Others could be the activation of other devices (for example, washing machines, when the lowest tariff threshold is reached).

Read more

Alcatel Lucent (Yes. The same guys implementing Oklahoma’s Smart meter/grid communications system) has had a very interesting document turn up in WikiLeaks’ newly released “Spyfiles”

 Alcatel-Lucent Unified Lawful Interception Suite

1357 ULIS adds lawful interception functions to Alcatel-Lucent products, adapting their internal interfaces to the standard lawful interception interfaces of law enforcement agency monitoring facilities.

The Alcatel-Lucent 1357 ULIS is a complete communications interception solution. It provides government authorities/LEAs and network operators with an integrated system for transparently intercepting and extracting real time information from vast amounts of voice, data and multimedia communications over virtually any type of network.

http://wikileaks.org/spyfiles/files/0/81_ALCATEL-LUCENT-1357-ULIS2008.pdf

So Alcatel-Lucent is adapting their products to permit “law enforcement monitoring facilities” to intercept your data.

For interception to be lawful, it must be conducted in accordance with national law, following due process after receiving proper authorization from competent authorities. Typically, a national Law Enforcement Agency  (LEA) issues an order for LI to a specific network operator, access provider, or network service provider, which is obliged by law to deliver the requested information to a Law Enforcement Monitoring Facility.  Link

What sort of data can Alcatel Lucent intercept?

The Alcatel-Lucent 1357 ULIS is a complete communications interception solution. It provides government authorities/LEAs and network operators with an integrated system for transparently intercepting and extracting real time information from vast amounts of voice, data and multimedia communications over virtually any type of network. (Emphasis mine) .  Link

But it says “Lawful Interception” so what is the big deal?  What do you think it takes to ‘lawfully’ intercept information these days?  A warrant?  A subpoena?

Not necessarily.

For some relevant background on Lawful Interception and the newer laws and policies that show that “lawful” may not mean what you think it does, see Lawful Interception: Technology that is legally watching you

The Bottom line?

Based on the law as it stands, you will likely never know if law enforcement or intelligence services are using intercept or intrusion technologies against you. If you do, then it may be accidental or long after the fact.

Read more-Lawful Interception: Technology that is legally watching you

So what is the state doing to protect our sensitive data?

Not much.

Oklahoma HB 1079, The Electric Usage Data Protection Act was passed into law and signed by the governor on May 24, 2011.

There is little protection afforded to the customer of their personal data collected by the smart meters.

HB 1079 authorizes OG&E and other utility providers in the state the right to share your meter usage data, without your consent, to various third parties for purposes of “development, enhancement, marketing, provision of energy-related products and services or promotion of public policy objectives.”  The third parties, according to the bill, will keep our info “confidential”

The bill does not define what “confidential” means legally.  The law states that a representative of the third party has to state that they will keep the information confidential in writing so maybe a copy of this statement or form would give a better idea of the parameters.  Also, there are no penalties provided for improper uses of our data in the bill which make it hard for me to believe that our privacy is being taken seriously at all.

The Electric Usage Data Protection Act went into effect on Nov 1, 2011.

Read the bill http://www.scribd.com/doc/62786738/Oklahoma-HB1079-The-Electric-Usage-Data-Protection-Act

I agree with Alcatel-Lucent.  It is  all about control.

_____________________________________________

Howard and I gave some attention to the topic of smart meters on our October 21, 2011 show.

Citing concerns with the health effects, privacy, safety and accuracy, some residents are telling their utility company NO!  They do not want the new meters installed and they say they are being told that unless they comply, they will lose service.

Here is the audio for that show; A4L_2011-10-21_64k.mp3

Super Duper License Plate Snoopers-Federal Grants for Texas Spy Drones

Kaye Beach

Nov. 16, 2011

If they can use ALPR (Automatic License Plate Recognition) then they can use facial recognition too.  And if they can do something-you can bet your bottom dollar that they will do it.

Drone Gives Texas Law Enforcement Bird’s-Eye View on Crime

By

Published November 16, 2011 | FoxNews.com

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office is weeks away from launching an unmanned aerial asset to help deputies fight crime. The ShadowHawk helicopter is six-feet long, weighs fifty pounds and fits in the back of an SUV.

“We can put it over a fire, put it over ahazmat spill, put it over a house with a suspect barricaded inside and literally give the incident commander the ability to look at the entire scene with a bird’s eye view, ” Chief Deputy Randy McDaniel said.

Sheriff’s deputies will fly the ShadowHawk with nothing more than a laptop computer and a remote control similar to that used for video games.

It’s equipped with an infrared camera that can clearly read a license plate from an elevation of twelve hundred feet. The helicopter cost upwards of $300,000 and was purchased with a grant from the federal government.

Read More

Also see this article mentioning facial recognition;

European Dispatch November 16, 2011

America Edges to Brink of Armed Police Drones

But police have been known to dodge these guidelines by flying drones over public protests where members of certain political movements are known to gather. Activists on the left and right assume the police want to collect mass photographic information of people in political movements, including portraits to run through facial-recognition software.

The Oklahoma MIPT turns Cops into “First Collectors” for Homeland Security

Kaye Beach

Nov. 8, 2011

The Oklahoma Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism just received a 2.2 million dollar grant from the Federal Department of Homeland Security for the purpose of training beat cops all over the country to become “first collectors” (of information) rather than first responders to the need of the taxpayers who pay their salaries.  We expect our police for to serve and protect our communities but Homeland Security has needs too-it needs information on everyone because this tips the balance of power away from the people to favor the government.  The federal government wants our police to serve and protect THEM from US.

Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism is happy to oblige.

OKLAHOMA CITY, Nov. 7 (UPI) — The Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism has received a grant from the U.S. government to continue training police officers nationwide.

The grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for MIPT’s Information Collection on Patrol training is for $2.2 million.

“This grant from the Department of Homeland Security through FEMA will bring the InCOP training program to tens of thousands of police officers nationally,” said MIPT Director David Cid. “Our training gives line officers skills that enhance our security and safety.

The  Information Collection on Patrol program is commonly referred to as InCOP.  InCOP is a a central component of the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice have made InCOP a central component of the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative, or SAR [MIPT is an official training provider for SAR]. Agencies large and small, urban and rural, traditional and tribal, are successfully implementing InCOP concepts within their training.

From the Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency (FEMA);

AWR-220: InCOP Build a Shield

InCOP 4 – Build a Shield is a two hour course that provides instruction on law enforcement’s role in the identification of behaviors that may be precursors to terrorism or other criminal activity. The course examines the deconstruction model for identifying indicators and warnings and explains how to populate a threat assessment in the context of the patrol environment. Understanding the way the intelligence community conducts threat assessments on emerging threats will enhance the ability to gather more useful information as related to indicators and warnings.

Date of Article: 07/06/2011

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InCOP teachers officers to better “first collectors”  for the Department of Homeland Security via  Suspicious Activity Reporting (SARS)

Description

InCOP Police Training
MIPT’s Information Collection on Patrol (InCOP®) police training focuses on the basic and critical skill of information collection by the front line police officer. MIPT’s primary delivery model involves “institutionalizing” the training in departments via in-service cycle. Trainers come to MIPT for an immersive experience. While MIPT trains a few- those trainers go back to their departments and train thousands.The overall goal of enhancing line officer collection leads to better intelligence, tactical awareness, and crime and terrorism prevention. As a Department of Homeland Security training partner, MIPT offers police training courses funded by the Homeland Security National Training Program.

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What is a SAR?

Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) is the process of documenting the observation of behavior that may be indicative of intelligence gathering or pre-operational planning related to terrorism, criminal, or other illicit intentions.

Nationwide SAR Initiative (NSI)

Integrates state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies’ SAR processes into a nationwide standardized and institutionalized effort

Read more about SARS and national information collecting here-

“If You See Something, Say Something” Re-Branding the Brown Shirts

What constitutes “suspicious activity”?

Successful surveillance detection efforts require immediate reporting of incidents similar to the following:

  • Multiple sightings of the same suspicious person, vehicle, or activity, separated by time, distance, or direction
  • Individuals who stay at bus or train stops for extended periods while buses and trains come and go
  • Individuals who carry on long conversations on pay or cellular telephones
  • Individuals who order food at a restaurant and leave before the food arrives or who order without eating
  • Joggers who stand and stretch for an inordinate amount of time
  • Individuals sitting in a parked car for an extended period of time
  • Individuals who don’t fit into the surrounding environment because they are wearing improper attire for the location or season
  • Individuals drawing pictures or taking notes in an area not normally of interest to a tourist or showing unusual interest in or photographing security cameras, guard locations, or watching security reaction drills and procedures
  • Individuals who exhibit suspicious behavior, such as staring or quickly looking away from individuals or vehicles as they enter or leave facilities or parking areas

Source: Courtesy of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

LAPD online; http://www.lapdonline.org/home/content_basic_view/27436

That list was from the LAPD’s website (cited as the model for state collection of SARs –suspicious activity reports)

The MIPT is a Homeland Security training partner.
The MIPT’s Mission

The MIPT’s “mission is to enhance the public safety through training, professional development and education under the MIPT’s Homeland Security National Training Program Cooperative Agreement.”

The MIPT “is a U.S. Department of Homeland Security training partner serving the nation’s 850,000 uniformed officers and law enforcement leadership.”  Who We Are

Some of the underlying assumptions of MIPT training are listed as follow:

  • The local intelligence base is the bedrock of the national intelligence architecture.
  • The uniformed officer is the first collector.
  • Training that improves information collection broadly “lifts all boats,” with enhanced outcomes across all crime problems.
  • Training the entire cadre of uniformed officers creates a culture of information collection and sharing.

Here is a sample of what is being taught to police officers nationwide by the MIPT;

Which of these two people are most likely to pose a threat?

An Arab-American male in his mid-twenties is photographing the Golden Gate Bridge. While doing so, he takes time to stop and recite Islamic prayers after kneeling and bowing to the east.

Or

A Caucasian woman in her late fifties is photographing the Golden Gate Bridge.

Don’t jump to conclusions-fifty year old ladies might very well be the more suspicious of the two….it all, that depends on the context….

Read more (page 30)

Department of Homeland Security federalizing police?

Here is what one “un-named insider” has to say regarding the Department of Homeland Security’s meddling in law enforcement training;

During the past several years, I have witnessed a dramatic shift in the focus of law enforcement training.  Law enforcement courses have moved away from a local community focus to a federally dominated model of complete social control.  Most training I have attended over the past two years have been sponsored by Department of Homeland Security (DHS), namely the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

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InCOP puts heavy emphasis on the use of human informants and infiltrators which is a most intrusive and destructive form of surveillance to unleash upon the average citizens in a free society This type of policing breeds distrust between the people and their public servants.  This type of policing is for protecting the government and not the people.

Race to the Top has too many strings, critic says

Kaye Beach

Sept. 30, 2011

Make that critics.

From the Tulsa Beacon, Sept, 29, 2011

Applying for federal funds to increase early childhood education is a huge mistake, said the leader of a grassroots organization that is determined to restore traditional values to Oklahoma education.
In 2009, Jenni White and Julie McKenzie of Oklahoma City formed ROPE (Restore Oklahoma Public Education) when they discovered the history of America’s Founding Fathers and basic civics was not being sufficiently taught through the Oklahoma PASS curriculum.
White spoke last week at a meeting of the Tulsa Area Republican Club and criticized a move by Gov. Mary Fallin and State School Superintendent Janet Barresi to apply for federal Race to the Top money for early childhood education.
Fallin and Barresi – both Republicans – announced that Oklahoma will submit an application to the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) program. RTT-ELC is a $500 million state-level grant competition designed by liberal educators who want to pump money into early childhood education.
Under RTT-ELC, participating states submit a detailed application to the United States Department of Education, outlining their plans to increase early childhood education. Should Oklahoma be chosen as a “winner,” the state would be eligible for a grant of up to $60 million.

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NewsOK Sept. 28, 2011

Letter to the Editor-

Grants equal greed

Listen up all elected officials! As of this moment we don’t want anything that has the word “grant” attached to it. The city wants a $17 million grant for the downtown rail station. We don’t want it! Now, Gov. Mary Fallin and state schools Superintendent Janet Barresiwant a $60 million grant for early childhood learning. It is a grant! We don’t want it!

Read more

 

 

Travelers checks: Automatic License Plate Readers track your every move

Kaye Beach

August 22, 2011

Here is good article on ALPR technology.

Source;  Carol Rose, On Liberty Community Blog at Boston.com

Remember the furor this spring, when we learned that iPhones and other mobile devices were logging every move their users made? Automatic License Plate Readers (ALPRs) would do something similar to your car.

Late last year, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts advertised a $300,000 grant from the federal Department of Transportation for the purchase of ALPRs. Over 90 agencies in the state applied; 27 were given the grant money.

Many of these towns (see a full list here) have already implemented the technology. At least one, Brookline, is currently struggling with whether or not to accept the funds and implement an ALPR.

ALPRs are not ordinary cameras. Attached to police cruisers, or fixed on telephone poles or other stationary places, the cameras snap an image of nearly every license plate they encounter. The device produces a file for each image captured, which includes searchable text displaying the time, date and GPS location of the car when and where the plate was ‘read’. This information is fed into a database, where it can be shared with other agencies and databases, and “mined” or analyzed.

One of the major problems with ALPR technology is that it sucks up all license plates, not simply those associated with people suspected of wrongdoing. Therefore as the technology expands, it is possible that law enforcement will be able to track your movements with incredible precision as you go about your daily life in your car. Without proper privacy protections backed by the force of law, ALPRs become yet another tracking technology.

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The Word of the Day is JURISDICTION

Kaye Beach

June 7, 2011

This from a press released issued by The Western Governors Association  last year on June 28.

Trans-boundary Wildlife Maps to be Completed in 3 Years

WHITEFISH, MONT. – Western Governors reaffirmed their commitment to work across political boundaries to tackle landscape-scale wildlife conservation through the Western Governors’ Wildlife Council and committed their state agencies to complete wildlife decision-support systems within the next three years. link

It is just one of many, many regional initiatives being pushed and funded by the federal government.  In this case, the Department of Energy.

The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded $3 million for 17 states to develop the wildlife decision-support systems. The information will be accessible not only to governmental entities, but also landowners, conservation groups, industry and agricultural interests. Eight pilot projects across the West were launched earlier this month to begin developing these compatible systems.

Issues involving transportation, the economy, security and  the environment are all offered up as problems that must be managed regionally.  That argument has been made, mostly unsuccessfully, for decades.  The notable exception being transportation.

Back to the press release.

Sally Jewell, President and CEO of REI, said “Ecosystems don’t know political boundaries, so conservation of the most important wildlife corridors, water and forest resources require cooperation across multiple public private entities.”

It isn’t the “ecosystem that doesn’t know political boundaries, it’s Ms. Jewell who is mistaken.  “Ecosystems” don’t exist until somebody decides they do.

What is an “ecosystem”?

According to the Franklin Institute for Science Learning;

Ecosystems vary in size. They can be as small as a puddle or as large as the Earth itself. Any group of living and nonliving things interacting with each other can be considered as an ecosystem.link

Jurisdiction (this word means something)

There is no such thing as an “ecosystem” except in these people’s imagination and if they want to draw the boundaries on ecosystems then they should concentrate on the ones that are within their own jurisdiction.

From the Legal Information Institute;

The term jurisdiction is really synonymous with the word “power”

Territory within which a court or government agency may properly exercise its power

If you intend to retain your right to representation and your ability to hold your officials accountable then don’t be fooled by the argument that we have all of these problems that can only be solved regionally.

In the event you find yourself evicted from your land so that the Lesser Prairie Chicken can have free run of the place, do you think the Western Governors Association will be responsive to your outrage?  No.  But your governor must be.

Chickens Don't Vote!

One of the pilot projects of the Western Governors Association focuses on the Lesser Prairie Chicken.

Oklahoma and Kansas
Oklahoma and Kansas are identifying crucial Lesser Prairie Chicken habitat across the five LPC states, which includes Colorado, New Mexico and Texas. Once crucial habitat for the species is identified across the five-state region, the states will work together to assess risk of habitat loss in relation to various threats, such as wind energy development and agriculture. Ultimately the states will be developing a range-wide mapping tool that could be used to identify areas important for LPC conservation, as well as connecting corridors for population maintenance.

The Western Governors Association is big on wildlife corridors which obviously, like ecosystems, must be trans-boundary.   Of course the animals don’t vote or make campaign donations which makes me wonder why these Western Governors are so keen on locking up more land for them.  Call me cynical but I don’t think these Governors give a darn about the Lesser Prairie Chicken.

I am full of deviousness

The The Western Governors Association also has a “Western States Water Council” that is developing policy to manage this essential resource throughout the region.

The Western States Water Council is an organization consisting of representatives appointed by the governors of 18 western states.

They say that;

There is a growing consensus that, as watersheds
have emerged as the unit for management and action, they have become a rational framework for undertaking integrated resource management.

One question.  Who is they and who elected them to manage our resources in this manner?  They are blaming it all on the watersheds.
“watersheds have emerged as the unit for management . . .”  What does that mean?  The watersheds jumped up and volunteered?  How did the watersheds just  become a “rational framework” for what is a pointedly political “undertaking”?  They can’t even take responsibility for their decisions that are insulated by “consensus”.  Undertaking is right.  They are the Undertakers for the representative form of government that they are killing.

OK.  That was more than one question.  It appears from reading the WGA’s blurb of Water Strategies that the reports and recommendations were drawn up and later approved by the Governors.  It doesn’t say by whom.  In fact the blurb tells us that “the reports” made the conclusions!

If it all goes wrong you will know who to blame right?  The  “watersheds” and the “reports” who are obviously in cahoots on some grand water conspiracy.

Water Needs and Strategies for a Sustainable Future 

Two WGA reports, Water Needs and Strategies for a Sustainable Future (2006) and Next Steps (2008) concluded that there is substantial stress on the water sector today even in the absence of climate change.

These reports, approved by the Governors, include consensus recommendations for how the Western states can work with federal, local, and private sector partners to address these challenges. The reports address a range of issues, including providing water supply to meet future demands, maintaining water supply infrastructure, resolving Indian water rights, preparing for climate change, and conserving endangered species.

Read more

When regional governance is legitimized that means you have compromised a little more of your  personal, state and national sovereignty.  Regional governance is the stepping stone to global governance and these days, those stepping stones are increasingly GREEN.

Calorie Counting Spy Cams in Lone Star Schools

Kaye Beach

May 12, 2011

I’ll enter this without comment as I have nothing to say that is fit to print…

SAN ANTONIO –  Smile, Texas schoolchildren. You’re on calorie camera.

That’s the idea behind a $2 million project being unveiled Wednesday in the lunchroom of a San Antonio elementary school, where high-tech cameras installed in the cafeteria will begin photographing what foods children pile onto their trays — and later capture what they don’t finish eating.

Digital imaging analysis of the snapshots will then calculate how many calories each student scarfed down. Local health officials said the program, funded by a U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, is the first of its kind in a U.S. school, and will be so precise that the technology can identify a half-eaten pear left on a lunch tray.

Private Property Ownership in Oklahoma Barrier to Sustainable Development

Kaye Beach

May 9, 2011

If you are looking for some clarity regarding the confusing cacophony surrounding “Sustainability” efforts in Oklahoma, you should read this.

In 2004 The Oklahoma Academy set their sights on Oklahoma’s Environment: Pursuing A Responsible Balance, a 208 page compilation of essays, opinions and ideas given by experts covering sustainability issues mostly in the context of gaining acceptance for Sustainable Development practices.

The Oklahoma Academy report addresses the definition of sustainability in the second essay, Moving Toward Sustainable Progress by Will Focht

The most commonly cited definition of sustainability was offered in 1987 by the Brundtland Commission: “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”


The Brundtland Commission is the unofficial name of the World Commission on Environment and Development, which was chaired by Gro Harlem Brundtland , a former prime minister of Norway. Created as an independent commission in response to a United Nations General Assembly resolution of 1983, the body was given the general mandate of proposing ways in which the international community could achieve sustainable development that would both protect the environment and fulfill the aspirations of the poorer countries for economic development.   From Answers.com

For the truth about Sustainable Development, I recommend Understanding Sustainable Development For the People and their Public Officials by Freedoms Advocates

www.freedomsadvocates.org

Sustainable Development has become a “buzz” term that refers to a political agenda, rather than an objectively sustainable form of development. Specifically, it refers to an initiative of the United Nations (U.N.) called Sustainable Development Agenda 21. Sustainable Development Agenda 21 is a comprehensive statement of a political ideology that is being progressively infused into every level of government in America.

Taken from Understanding Sustainable Development For the People and their Public Officials

Further into the Oklahoma Academy report, the problem of private land ownership is addressed.  The problem is, according to this report, is that too much of it is privately owned in Oklahoma.

“Oklahoma, which ranked number forty-two in 1995 among the fifty states in percentage of land owned by Federal and State governments (National Wilderness Institute 1995). Only eight states had more land under private ownership than Oklahoma. “

Beth Schaefer Caniglia, Assistant Professor of Environmental Sociology at Oklahoma State University and member of the Board for the Oklahoma Sustainability Network gives her advice to overcoming  the  “long-standing sentiments regarding private property rights as symbols for democracy and freedom” held by Oklahomans.

“Many landowners resist the perceived slippery slope of conservation mandates and retreat behind constitutional takings provisions, . . .”

 

The Constitution protects property rights mainly through the Fifth Amendment’s Takings or Just Compensation Clause: ‘‘nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.’’

link

Drawing upon her experience as a “consultant for the NGO Steering Committee to the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development”, Ms. Caniglia offers some suggestions to overcome the problems that arise from the friction between sustainable development goals and the rights of property owners.

 

“These recommendations flow from my scholarly and professional experience as an environmental sociologist studying sustainable development policy making at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and in various sectors of society.  They are also informed by my involvement in Oklahoma sustainability-related organizations and initiatives”

Oklahoma, according to Ms. Caniglia, need some work on its “cultural framework”, noting that

“Recent decades have witnessed increasingly heated debate over efforts designed to harmonize environmental protection mandates with private property rights.”

Ms. Caniglia comforts sustainable development enthusiast by pointing out that,

“Oklahoma is not unique in its need to reconcile sustainable ecological management with private property rights, since Texas, Nebraska and Indiana, among others have even higher percentages of land under private ownership.”

Specifically she recommends work in three areas to aid in adjusting Oklahoma’s faulty cultural framework.

Recommendation #1:Facilitate Place-based Environmental Education for All Citizens in Oklahoma

Recommendation #2: Increase the Scope and Authority of Citizen Engagement in the Creation of Oklahoma Sustainable Land Management Policies

Recommendation #3: Calibrate the Creation of Collaborative Comprehensive Plans and Implementation of Land Use Standards

But education alone is not enough…

“Unfortunately, education alone is not enough to overcome the adversarial character that often pervades discussions of private property rights and sustainable ecosystem management trade-offs, . . .”  (See some of Ms. Caniglia’s other work below)

Understand that “citizen engagement” is not for the purpose of giving you a voice-you already have one.  It’s called the US Constitution which guarantees your natural right to own your property.  This is the law (bastardized though it has been)

Citizen engagement is to give them the chance to change your mind.

“There is an oft-heard adage that planning is neither a highly respected nor a politically powerful field in our state. Such an argument deserves consideration, since comprehensive planning is cited by the World Health Organization, the UN Commission on Sustainable Development and Agenda 21 as central to the achievement of sustainable development, including public health, profitable industrial growth, and ecosystem integrity.”

Ms. Caniglia correctly recognizes that due to the high percentage of private property ownership in the great State of Oklahoma, there is no way around the citizens.

“With the ownership of our lands predominately private, we can best foster sustainable ecosystem management by engaging our landowners in the process.”

Ms. Caniglia proposes to “surmount the radical flanks of private property rights” by  educating,  visioning, dialoging,  and facilitating  the people of Oklahoma into  a more “balanced” perspective of their natural and legal right to ownership of property which really means behaviorally engineering you into fatally compromising an essential human right that undergirds all others-the right to work, acquire and own and use and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

“Given that citizen landowners continue to be engaged in the comprehensive planning process more than many other citizen engagement opportunities, they should be a focus of our efforts to harmonize private property interests with sustainable land management.”

Here is what the proponents of sustainable development always seem to miss;

“One of the most fundamental requirements of a capitalist economic system—and one of the most misunderstood concepts—is a strong system of property rights. For decades social critics in the United States and throughout the Western world have complained that “property” rights too often take precedence over “human” rights, with the result that people are treated unequally and have unequal opportunities. Inequality exists in any society. But the purported conflict between property rights and human rights is a mirage. Property rights are human rights.”

http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc/PropertyRights.html

I encourage everyone to read Ms. Caniglia’s short article.  It begins on page 74 of the Oklahoma Academy’s Town Hall publication of 2004.

http://www.okacademy.org/2004_research.pdf

You may also want to become familiar with the Oklahoma Academy as they are involved in many interesting projects aimed at policy development and have been since the 1980’s.

http://www.okacademy.org/

The Oklahoma Academy’s paper came out in 2004.  Overall, I would bet that they are pleased with the progress on “sustainability” since then.  The federal government is working hand in glove with non-government organizations all over the state giving the whole movement in Oklahoma a real boost.

Here is just one example;

ACOG Association of Central Oklahoma Governments

ACOG is one of 11 Councils of Governments in the State of Oklahoma, and one of several hundred planning organizations across the country.

http://www.acogok.org/About_ACOG/

Board of Directors

http://www.acogok.org/About_ACOG/Board_of_Directors.asp

“. . .regional sustainability planning is ACOG’s latest project!”

Grassroots to massroots

OKC Downtown Monthly – October 2010

. . It takes brave, fearless leaders to tread into the collaborative world of sustainability planning. One such remarkable group is the Association of Central Oklahoma Governments (ACOG). ACOG is a voluntary association of city, town and county governments within the central Oklahoma area, including Oklahoma, Cleveland, Canadian and Logan Counties

. . .This kind of coordination among so many member municipalities is really very cool. Also, ACOG’s structure, functions and level of partner participation make it the perfect mechanism for coordinating regional sustainability efforts. And regional sustainability planning is ACOG’s latest project!

. . .In the 2010 Consolidated Appropriations Act, Congress provided a total of $150 million to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for a Sustainable Communities Initiative.

. . .But how do we get some of that $100 million, you might ask? Well, ACOG is writing a grant application, of course! ACOG’s regional sustainability planning will mean that citizens from ACOG member cities such as Luther, Jones, Nichols Hills, Oklahoma City, Moore, Slaughterville and Newcastle will leave their comfortable city “bubble” to meet and greet citizens from other municipalities to collaborate in developing sustainable plans to benefit us all.

. . .ACOG’s work on these planning efforts folds perfectly into the ongoing efforts of the Oklahoma Sustainability Network and our municipal sustainability commissions.

Read more

ACOG is a member of the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC)

“The National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) serves as the national voice for regionalism.”


National Associations Congratulate HUD Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant Awardees

WASHINGTON, DC (October 14, 2010) – The National League of Cities (NLC), National Association of Regional Councils (NARC), Smart Growth America (SGA), the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) and ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability USA (ICLEI) congratulate the cities, towns, communities and regions which today were awarded Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

One last thought.

“The true foundation of republican government is the equal right of every citizen in his person and property and in their management.” –Thomas Jefferson to Samuel Kercheval, 1816.


Other works of Ms Caniglia;

Informal Alliances vs. Institutional Ties: The Effect of Elite Alliances on Environmental TSMO Networks  http://www.mobilization.sdsu.edu/articleabstracts/061caniglia.html

“Caniglia  found that transnational environmental organizations with informal ties to international agencies played more central roles in transnational social movement networks by helping channel information and pressure among disconnected social actors.”

Handbook of Social Movements Across Disciplines pg 47

Globalization and Resistance: Transnational Dimensions of Social Movements

(As a contributor)

http://www.rowmanlittlefield.com/Catalog/SingleBook.shtml?command=Search&db=^DB/CATALOG.db&eqSKUdata=0742519899&thepassedurl=[thepassedurl]