UK: New focus on electromagnetic radiation, phone masts

dinsdag, 27 oktober 2009 - Categorie: Berichten Internationaal

Bron: The Huddersfield Examiner 27 oct. 2009

New focus on electromagnetic radiation, phone masts

in the UK are now using 70m mobile phones – more than one phone per man, woman and child – but the jury remains out on the long-term damage they may be causing.

Mobile phones have been blamed for nosebleeds, memory loss, neuro-degenerative diseases, infertility, sleep disturbance, breast cancer, headaches, cerebral tumours and vomiting.

Calls are serviced through a network of 52,000 masts or base stations – up from 35,000 five years ago.

Dr Martin Sibley is a research leader in communication technology with an interest in electromagnetic theory at Huddersfield University.

He accepts that it is simply too early to determine what all this non- ionising radiation is doing to us.

''But I’m coming down on the ‘electromagnetic fog is nasty’ side of the argument,'' he admitted.

''A lot depends on the frequency of the radiation, which covers such a wide range. It’s not clear at this stage what is damaging and what is harmless.

''What is certain is that this kind of radiation does have a variety of effects on the human body.

''I compare our present situation to the one scientists found themselves in when somebody first suggested there might be a link between tobacco and cancer.''

And the latest research by the World Health Organisation claims it can be linked to four different kinds of cancer with a ''significantly increased risk’’ of some brain tumours. The full details of the research which looked at 12,800 people over 10 years will be released in the coming weeks.

But for every piece of research suggesting the lethality of microwave emissions, there’s a survey saying there’s nothing to worry about.

In the USA, a comprehensive $12m federal investigation of cellphone safety is under way, but will take at least another five years to complete.

Investigations in the UK are being conducted and funded jointly by the Department of Health and the Mobile Operators’ Association (MOA).

Results from the current £3.1m Mobile Telephone and Health Research Study won’t be available for several years.

Many people think that such research is discredited from the outset because, whether or not the Mobile Operators’ Association has a hidden agenda, it’s impossible to consider that they might not have one.

People can’t help but think that MOA research was ‘directed’ and that the results thus produced are in some way tainted.

Data from a set of Swedish studies, collected over the last 10 years, may be considered more reliable.

One showed conclusively that rats exposed to two hours’ mobile phone radiation, became brain-damaged.

For Kirklees Planning Department, apparently, the jury is still out.

Their concern when considering an application for a new phone mast or a significant addition to an established one, is whether or not the application would ‘materially affect the appearance’ of the proposed site.

When pressed on health issues they mention a ‘perception of risk’ not ‘risk’, which indicates that planners, in line with Government policy, are keeping an open mind on the danger or safety of telecoms equipment.

In the meantime, telecoms companies are seeking ever more ingenious ways to disguise their masts – as chimney pots, flagpoles, clock towers, weather vanes, drainpipes and even as plastic trees.

Nationally, UK planners are quietly advising a moratorium on new masts on or overlooking school premises.

This is a profound irony for parents of children at the new Hillside Primary School in Newsome.

Here objection has been over-ruled as a school has been planned and built next to eight mobile phone transmitters on the TV relay mast on the school boundary – and apparently without independent checks on emission levels.

They are objecting to the presence of eight mobile phone transmitters on the TV relay mast on the school boundary, which is The transmitters are broadcasting around the clock in the 900-2100Mhz range.

Many believe such bombardment is damaging their children’s health.

They may be right. But it’s as well to consider the following:

It’s not just mobile phones. Cordless landline phones, baby alarms and broadband-connected personal computers also pump out and receive microwave radiation.

Electromagnetic ‘fog’ surrounds electrical cables, radios and televisions in the same way a magnet influences iron filings. We’ve lived with this for many decades. In the United States of America a study has confirmed a relationship between leukaemia clusters and pole-mounted transformers.

It’s as well to bear in mind that mobile phones themselves are transceivers which means that they both pick up signals from phone masts and send signals to them.

While a phone mast may emit microwave energy much greater than the waves that come from your mobile phone, you are much nearer to your mobile phone and therefore subjected to a much greater intensity of emission.

The mast is, after all, on top of a building, not next to your head.

Crashing down all around us is wide-band radiation from the sun, cosmic gamma particles from distant exploding stars, background radiation from nuclear tests and accidents and the combined output of many high-powered terrestrial radio transmitter towers.

Far more evidence exists for cancer clusters related to ionising radiation from rocks and soil – radon gas seepage – than from mobile phones and masts.

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