PG&E threatens customer-install it or else!

Charles Pine, an Oakland resident did not want Smart Meters installed on the duplex he owns.  He was home when a PG&E worker showed up, without previous notice, to install them and Charles refused.  Although the PG&E worker did not install the meters that day, he threatened Charles, stating, “…Either we install it, or you find another energy company”.  [Ya right, PG&E is a monopoly in our area]   Many people have contacted the EMF Safety Network to complain about how PG&E has treated them when they call  about not wanting Smart Meters, but Charles Pine had a recorder in his pocket and he caught the workers statements on tape.  Check out the story and listen to the recording on Stop Smart Meters.

Texas Investigation Reveals Smart Meter Fire Risk

In Houston Texas, “Local 2 investigates Smart Meter fires” reports they looked into homeowners complaints of Smart Meter fires and found some people are left with no electricity and major damage to their homes, including burnt out appliances after a Smart Meter has been installed by the utility. 

“Charles Phillips saw smoke coming from the transformer in his backyard one morning last November. When he went out to inspect the damage, he said he saw a CenterPoint Energy contractor at his meter box with a fire extinguisher. He told me it had caught on fire, Phillips said.”

“Inside Phillip’s home, two TVs were fried, his air conditioner and garage door opener stopped working, and all of the wires and cables hooked up to his electronics were melted from the jolt his electronics took when a fire sparked after the installer removed his old meter. Phillips was left with a total of about $2,500 in damages.”

According to the article, Centerpoint, the utility for Houston Texas, has admitted the connection, stating there has been less than 100 problems. “CenterPoint’s LeBlanc said the problem is mostly in older homes where wiring is not up to code or something has caused a strain on the wires running into the meter box.”

In other areas, news reports indicate some utilities are beginning to recognize the problem.  According to this article, A CEO of Oncor, another Texas utility,  says, “the company has a new procedure for installation of smart meters after two house fires in Arlington last week.  Robert Shapard says old wiring in two homes could not support the new smart meters.”

In the State of Maine a news report states a utility supervisor admits finding Smart Meter fire hazards, “…the technicians are actually discovering more possible fire hazards than the company anticipated, and informing customers of dangers they otherwise would not have known existed. He said, so far, they have discovered 70 to 80 electrical issues in the Portland area.”

Powercor, a utility company in Australia, recognizes the safety risk from Smart Meters, stating, “A defect notice is issued when a wiring safety issue is identified.”  In Victoria, Australia, installers identified possibly life-threatening electrical hazards in 3500 Victorian homes.

In  July 2010 Cindy Sage, Sage Associates and James J. Biergiel, EMF Electrical Consultant wrote an article describing the risks of Wireless Smart Meters and Potential for Electrical Fires.

The EMF Safety Network has been collecting stories and news reports onthis issue.  Two unreported stories involved house fires and suspicions of possible links to the newly installed Smart Meters.  One fire started in a surge protector, which destroyed the older home.  The other was reported to start in a swamp cooler and the owner died in the fire.  Both had recently installed Smart Meters.  In the second fire, a loud humming was heard in the home,  an explosion sound and a computer fried, and later the fire erupted.

More info: Smart Meter Fires and explosions.

Medical Implants and Wireless Hazards


Widespread wireless installations including Smart Meters are creating safety risks for 20-25 million people, who have medical implants such as pacemakers, infusion pumps, metal rods and hearing aids.  In some cases these interference risks are life threatening. Dr. Gary Olhoeft, professor of Geophysics in Colorado, has a medical implant, a deep brain stimulator for Parkinson’s disease.  Olhoeft shares his research and knowledge about wireless interference with implants.

In part two Dr. Ohloeft describes a situation where as he passed through a retail store security system his stimulator was turned off.  He shares, “I had to turn myself back on. I have about four seconds to do that before I start shaking so bad I can’t do it.”

Special thanks to EMR Policy for these important videos.  EMR Policy writes, “Translating the complex science and drawing upon personal experience of such interference with his own implant, Olhoeft’s information poses important policy questions on protecting the disabled from interference. ”

WHO’s Statement is a Game Changer

By Joshua Hart, Director StopSmartMeters.Org
June 2nd 2011

 

Make no mistake.   The decision by the World Health Organization on Tuesday to classify non-ionizing radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” is an absolute game changer for our movement. This seemingly cautious statement by the world’s pre-eminent health organization should ring loud alarm bells around the world.  Despite backroom industry influence and widespread conservatism, the slow-to-react beast was finally forced to act- as the walls of wireless damage closed in.

Wireless technology is something most of us have taken for granted for quite a while now.  Someone said the other day, “I don’t even remember when they introduced cell phones.  All of a sudden everyone was just using them.”  Therein lies the crux.  We just took the phone we were handed.  We didn’t ask questions.  We trusted that any authority that would allow this product to be sold would not do so without reasonable assurances of safety.  It is now clear that that misplaced trust has been betrayed, and people are dying because of it.

The truth is that our government allowed (even promoted) a technology whose effects on biological living systems we really knew very little about. There’s capitalism for you.  Life really isn’t that important.  It’s all about the money.  You are expendable. So- apparently- is the planet.

The WHO’s decision, and the large number of studies that led to it are suddenly opening up a whole new set of questions about how we use wireless- questions that people wouldn’t have dared to whisper- even last week.

For example:

1)  Shouldn’t  there be laws against someone else’s wi-fi entering your home?  Your neighbor would not be allowed to douse your living room with chloroform (now in the same ‘possibly carcinogenic’ category as EMF radiation).  Why should they be able to inflict wi-fi on you- particularly if it prevents you from carrying out basic life activities- like- er- sleeping?

2)  Shouldn’t public buildings such as libraries and public transportation ban wireless emitting devices such as wi-fi routers, cell phones and iPads?  A bus full of 100 people on their cell phones- with all their signals bouncing around the metal chassis- is like being forced to sit inside a microwave oven.  We are entitled to accessible transportation and public services, without being exposed to a carcinogen.  Wireless makes these services inaccessible to the growing number of electrosensitive individuals.  There’s definitely a lawsuit here if officials fail to do their job.

3) Isn’t it now just as morally acceptable to ask someone to turn off their cell phone in a public place as asking them to extinguish that cigarette?

We wouldn’t be surprised to see regulations coming forward over the next few years restricting cell phone use in the same way that smoking has been further and further marginalized, from sections in restaurants to banned inside even bars, to prohibitions around doorways, and now bans in entire neighborhoods.

So where does all this leave the “smart” meter rollout?  PG&E and other utilities have pointed to the World Health Organization to reassure its customers of the safety of RF radiation.  Now that the WHO has declared that such radiation is ‘possibly carcinogenic’ and independent analyses have pegged “smart” meter radiation at 100x the exposure of a cell phone, the wireless mesh network is looking more and more like a dangerous mistake.  The utilities that launched this program without even consulting us- arrogantly refusing  to consider the human or environmental health impacts- should be the ones to pick up the pieces and pay the tab for this debacle.  Not the ratepayers.  Not the victims who are living like animals running from this vicious technology; living in their cars or in the woods.

The East Bay Express reports PG&E’s words a year ago:

“The federal government and the international health community, including the World Health Organization,” PG&E said at the time, “have deemed the low-level radio frequency on which PG&E’s SmartMeters rely to be completely safe.”

But not anymore.

David Baker, Energy reporter for the SF Chronicle wrote:

‘Given the potential consequences for public health of this classification and findings, it is important that additional research be conducted into the long-term, heavy use of mobile phones,’ said Christopher Wild, the WHO’s director. ‘Pending the availability of such information, it is important to take pragmatic measures to reduce exposure such as hands-free devices or texting.’

That’s similar to the arguments made by many California city councils that have called for a SmartMeter moratorium. If the science isn’t settled, they argue, shouldn’t we stop installing the meters until it is?

They now have more ammunition to press their case.”

To many of us who have experienced firsthand the health damage caused by wireless, the WHO declaration is just one more brick in the wall of evidence that this technology hurts people.  But to most people, this is a huge wake up call that has received widespread coverage in the mainstream media- as if this is a new thing.  Just like gradual acceptance of climate change over the past couple of decades, governments, industry and institutions will brush aside the critics, pretending they are now the ones to protect you from the dangers and that they have the situation under control.  They will promote new devices to shield your skull from radiation- the light cigarettes and electric cars of the wireless world.  But in the end we know what we need to do.  We just need to quit the addiction.  We need to re-wire.  And our lives will be better for it.

http://stopsmartmeters.org/2011/06/02/whos-statement-is-a-game-changer/

SmartMeters: Who has the power?

By Howard Glasser

If you’re waiting for somebody else to do something about this, don’t hold your breath. Meanwhile we’re all being led like sheep to the slaughter while being portrayed by the industry that would commit genocide as a fringe group of misguided, uninformed, conspiracy theorist, tin hat lunatics that also believe in alien abductions. Smart Grid Industry trade publications say that “The proliferation of anti-SmartMeter citizen groups is a direct result of the lack of community outreach by the utilities in the smart meter rollout.” They add, “Utility companies need to make their case for SmartMeters to the public and they need to hone their PR skills.”

We’re being treated like uneducated idiots. Worse yet, we’re being ignored because this crime’s being committed in broad daylight while we watch and do nothing and PG&E and the CPUC are confident they’ve got local government’s hands tied and the ratepayers right where they want them in their pocket.

Now’s not the time to give up and lay down because they’re just getting started. This deal was made in back rooms and a long time before you knew about it and there’s a lot of catching up to do. It took a lot of time to plan something this big.

It involved the cooperation of utility companies and regulatory commissions and buy in from every level of government both here and abroad. It crossed party lines and international boundaries. An alliance was formed, stakeholders were rallied, meetings were held, an agenda was issued, lobbying groups were activated, campaigns financed, politicians elected, promises made, t’s crossed, votes cast, lips zipped, bills passed, capital raised, wheels put in motion, science bought, marketing commissioned, brochures printed and then one day as if it all happened overnight while we slumbered, global deployment was under way.

This isn’t a new story. In matters where government and business have a great deal of money at stake, they’re going to protect their investment and their interests will not necessarily be yours. If there’s enough money to be made, the entities that control world markets will stop at nothing to achieve their goals and if they’re caught doing wrong, the penalty is always worth the price.

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.” Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1854

Corporations aren’t in business to be nice. They exist to return a profit to their investors. None of this should come as a surprise. What isn’t about money these days? If it’s not about making money, it’s about lobbying money or laundering money or hush money or payoffs or bailouts or rip-offs or rate hikes. Without a financial incentive, industry doesn’t care and the policy makers won’t listen.

It’s not and never has been about getting government and corporations to respond for moral or ethical reasons or even because they’ve been backed in to a legal corner. It doesn’t matter what corner they’ve been backed in to, they have enough money to buy themselves out and enough political muscle to win.

SmartMeters are not about going green or conserving energy or reducing greenhouse gas emissions or saving polar bears. It’s about how our money finds its way in to a utility company’s pockets.  The utility companies aren’t doing this for your health or for the environment.

This isn’t about Green Power but the power that’s wielded over a citizenry stripped of its rights and that the CPUC would see buried to meet industry deadlines and increase shareholder returns while leaving us in the rubble of PG&E’s twisted machinations. It is and always has been about the money. It’s about having enough money to turn big money into mega money because as anyone with great wealth can tell you, you can’t ever possibly have enough money.

This isn’t a game for amateurs and the players are not easily identified. It’s not like they’re wearing jerseys that say, I’m the quarterback. They’re well-protected. You could be standing right in front of them and not know it. You may have even voted for them. They have speech writers. They have people who run around after them with erasers when they falter. They have marketing agencies and makeup artists. They’re packaged and sold like commodities and even when they’re in plain sight, we’d never guess what they’re up to.

Forty-seven years ago, a voice stepped forth out of the crowd and uttered these words: “There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can’t take part; you can’t even passively take part, and you’ve got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you’ve got to make it stop. And you’ve got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you’re free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!” Mario Savio, University of California at Berkeley, Dec. 2, 1964.

Who will step from the crowd now and lead us forward and who will stand with them? If you still believe in America and you want change, you’ll have to stand up for it and it’s going to take more than letters and a handful of people on the courthouse steps. It’s going to take numbers too big to ignore. Organize and mobilize or lose the chance to get back your country.

Howard Glasser,  Kelseyville

Original article “Smart Meters: Who has the power ” was published in the Lake County Record Bee on 5/31/2011

Wireless devices-potential cancer risk says World Health Organization

Cell phones, cell towers, wi-fi, smart meters, DECT phones, cordless phones, baby monitors and other wireless devices all emit non ionizing radio frequencies, which the World Health Organization (WHO) has just classified as a potential carcinogen. This is big news from the WHO and governments and decision makers can no longer hide behind the “no RF health effects” industry mantra.

Cindy Sage, co-editor of the Bioinitiative Report writes, ” The WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer has just issued it’s decision that non-ionizing radiofrequency radiation is classified as a 2B (Possible) Carcinogen. This is the same category as DDT, lead, and engine exhaust. This mirrors the 2001 IARC finding that extremely low frequency (ELF-EMF) that classified as a 2B (Possible) Carcinogen. This pertained to power frequency (power line and appliance) non-ionizing radiation. These two findings confirm that non-ionizing radiation should be considered as a possible risk factor for cancers; and that new, biologically-based public safety standards are urgently needed. ”

Dr. Louis Slesin has been reporting on this issue for decades. See Microwave News, for further commentary.

IARC CLASSIFIES RADIOFREQUENCY ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS AS POSSIBLY CARCINOGENIC TO HUMANS

Lyon, France, May 31, 2011 ‐‐

“The WHO/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B), based on an increased risk for glioma, a malignant type of brain cancer1, associated with wireless phone use.

Background
Over the last few years, there has been mounting concern about the possibility of adverse health effects resulting from exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, such as those emitted by wireless communication devices. The number of mobile phone subscriptions is estimated at 5 billion globally.
From May 24–31 2011, a Working Group of 31 scientists from 14 countries has been meeting at IARC in Lyon, France, to assess the potential carcinogenic hazards from exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields. These assessments will be published as Volume 102 of the IARC Monographs, which will be the fifth volume in this series to focus on physical agents, after Volume 55 (Solar Radiation), Volume 75 and Volume 78 on ionizing radiation (X‐rays, gamma‐rays, neutrons, radio‐nuclides), and Volume 80 on non‐ionizing radiation (extremely low‐frequency electromagnetic fields).
The IARC Monograph Working Group discussed the possibility that these exposures might induce long‐term health effects, in particular an increased risk for cancer. This has relevance for public health, particularly for users of mobile phones, as the number of users is large and growing, particularly among young adults and children.
The IARC Monograph Working Group discussed and evaluated the available literature on the following exposure categories involving radiofrequency electromagnetic fields:
␣ occupational exposures to radar and to microwaves; ␣ environmental exposures associated with transmission of signals for radio, television and wireless telecommunication; and ␣ personal exposures associated with the use of wireless telephones.
International experts shared the complex task of tackling the exposure data, the studies of cancer in humans, the studies of cancer in experimental animals, and the mechanistic and other relevant data.

1 237 913 new cases of brain cancers (all types combined) occurred around the world in 2008 (gliomas represent 2/3 of these). Source: Globocan 2008

Results
The evidence was reviewed critically, and overall evaluated as being limited2 among users of wireless telephones for glioma and acoustic neuroma, and inadequate3 to draw conclusions for other types of cancers. The evidence from the occupational and environmental exposures mentioned above was similarly judged inadequate. The Working Group did not quantitate the risk; however, one study of past cell phone use (up to the year 2004), showed a 40% increased risk for gliomas in the highest category of heavy users (reported average: 30 minutes per day over a 10‐year period).

Conclusions
Dr Jonathan Samet (University of Southern California, USA), overall Chairman of the Working Group, indicated that “the evidence, while still accumulating, is strong enough to support a conclusion and the 2B classification. The conclusion means that there could be some risk, and therefore we need to keep a close watch for a link between cell phones and cancer risk.”
“Given the potential consequences for public health of this classification and findings,” said IARC Director Christopher Wild, “it is important that additional research be conducted into the long‐ term, heavy use of mobile phones. Pending the availability of such information, it is important to take pragmatic measures to reduce exposure such as hands‐free devices or texting. ”
The Working Group considered hundreds of scientific articles; the complete list will be published in the Monograph. It is noteworthy to mention that several recent in‐press scientific articles4 resulting from the Interphone study were made available to the working group shortly before it was due to convene, reflecting their acceptance for publication at that time, and were included in the evaluation.
A concise report summarizing the main conclusions of the IARC Working Group and the evaluations of the carcinogenic hazard from radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (including the use of mobile telephones) will be published in The Lancet Oncology in its July 1 issue, and in a few days online.

2 ‘Limited evidence of carcinogenicity’: A positive association has been observed between exposure to the agent and cancer for which a causal interpretation is considered by the Working Group to be credible, but chance, bias or confounding could not be ruled out with reasonable confidence.
3 ‘Inadequate evidence of carcinogenicity’: The available studies are of insufficient quality, consistency or statistical power to permit a conclusion regarding the presence or absence of a causal association between exposure and cancer, or no data on cancer in humans are available.
4 a. ‘Acoustic neuroma risk in relation to mobile telephone use: results of the INTERPHONE international case‐ control study’ (the Interphone Study Group, in Cancer Epidemiology, in press) b. ‘Estimation of RF energy absorbed in the brain from mobile phones in the Interphone study’ (Cardis et al., Occupational and Environmental Medicine, in press)
c. ‘Risk of brain tumours in relation to estimated RF dose from mobile phones – results from five Interphone countries’ (Cardis et al., Occupational and Environmental Medicine, in press) ”

 

Autism and prenatal ultrasound: Coincidence or Connection?

By: Nancy Evans, BS, Health Science Consultant

Autism was once a rare diagnosis. Today it affects 1 in 110 children and 1 in 70 boys.
Ultrasound was once a rare medical procedure, reserved for high-risk pregnancies. Today ultrasound is routine in almost all pregnancies in developed countries.
· More scans are done in each pregnancy than ever before.
· The intensity of exposure is nearly 8 times higher than in 1993 and the medical professionals who operate the equipment may not be adequately trained on the newer machines.
· There is a wealth of scientific evidence from international experts suggesting a need for caution in the use of prenatal ultrasound. Highlights are summarized in the enclosed document.

But most disturbing is the fact that ultrasound is also being performed by non-medical personnel in shopping malls across America. There are hundreds, perhaps thousands of these facilities, aggressively marketing “keepsake” sonograms to expectant parents as an early bonding experience with their unborn baby. FDA has warned against use of these facilities but it is clear that most parents haven’t heard or have chosen to ignore the warnings.

In 2009, Connecticut became the first state to ban these keepsake ultrasound boutiques. But in most states, these facilities are very profitable franchises that may be doing irreparable harm to babies and families.

Read the Report: Autism was once a rare diagnosis

7/13/2011 update: Could Prenatal Ultrasounds Contribute To Cases Of Autism?

European Resolution Calls on Governments to Reduce EMF

PACE calls on governments to ‘take all reasonable measures’ to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields

May 27, 2011

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), meeting in Kyiv at Standing Committee level, today called on European governments to “take all reasonable measures” to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields, especially to radio frequencies from mobile phones, “and particularly the exposure to children and young people who seem to be most at risk from head tumours”.

According to parliamentarians, governments should “for children in general, and particularly in schools and classrooms, give preference to wired Internet connections, and strictly regulate the use of mobile phones by schoolchildren on school premises”, and put in place information and awareness-raising campaigns on the risks of potentially harmful long-term biological effects on the environment and on human health, especially “targeting children, teenagers and young people of reproductive age”.

Following the proposals of the rapporteur (Jean Huss, Luxembourg, SOC), the Assembly called on governments to provide information on potential health risks of DECT-type wireless telephones, baby monitors and other domestic appliances which emit continuous pulse waves, if all electrical equipment is left permanently on standby. They should, instead, recommend “the use of wired, fixed telephones at home or, failing that, models which do not permanently emit pulse waves”.

Governments should “reconsider the scientific basis for the present electromagnetic fields exposure standards set by the International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection, “which have serious limitations” and apply as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) principles.

The adopted resolution underlines the fact that “the precautionary principle should be applicable when scientific evaluation does not allow the risk to be determined with sufficient certainty” and stresses that “the issue of independence and credibility of scientific expertise is crucial” to achieve a transparent and balanced assessment of potential negative impacts on the environment and human health.

The potential dangers of electromagnetic fields and their effect on the environment

Resolution 1815 (2011)1
Parliamentary Assembly, Council of Europe

1. The Parliamentary Assembly has repeatedly stressed the importance of states’ commitment to preserving the environment and environmental health, as set out in many charters, conventions, declarations and protocols since the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment and the Stockholm Declaration (Stockholm, 1972). The Assembly refers to its past work in this field, namely Recommendation 1863 (2009) on environment and health, Recommendation 1947 (2010) on noise and light pollution, and more generally, Recommendation 1885 (2009) on drafting an additional protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights concerning the right to a healthy environment and Recommendation 1430 (1999) on access to information, public participation in environmental decision-making and access to justice – implementation of the Aarhus Convention.

2. The potential health effects of the very low frequency of electromagnetic fields surrounding power lines and electrical devices are the subject of ongoing research and a significant amount of public debate. According to the World Health Organisation, electromagnetic fields of all frequencies represent one of the most common and fastest growing environmental influences, about which anxiety and speculation are spreading. All populations are now exposed to varying degrees of to electromagnetic fields, the levels of which will continue to increase as technology advances.

3. Mobile telephony has become commonplace around the world. This wireless technology relies upon an extensive network of fixed antennas, or base stations, relaying information with radio frequency signals. Over 1.4 million base stations exist worldwide and the number is increasing significantly with the introduction of third generation technology. Other wireless networks that allow high-speed internet access and services, such as wireless local area networks, are also increasingly common in homes, offices and many public areas (airports, schools, residential and urban areas). As the number of base stations and local wireless networks increases, so does the radio frequency exposure of the population.

4. While electrical and electromagnetic fields in certain frequency bands have wholly beneficial effects which are applied in medicine, other non-ionising frequencies, be they sourced from extremely low frequencies, power lines or certain high frequency waves used in the fields of radar, telecommunications and mobile telephony, appear to have more or less potentially harmful, non-thermal, biological effects on plants, insects and animals as well as the human body even when exposed to levels that are below the official threshold values.

5. As regards standards or threshold values for emissions of electromagnetic fields of all types and frequencies, the Assembly recommends that the ALARA or “as low as reasonably achievable” principle is applied, covering both the so-called thermal effects and the athermic or biological effects of electromagnetic emissions or radiation. Moreover, the precautionary principle should be applicable when scientific evaluation does not allow the risk to be determined with sufficient certainty, especially given the context of growing exposure of the population, including particularly vulnerable groups such as young people and children, which could lead to extremely high human and economic costs of inaction if early warnings are neglected.

6. The Assembly regrets that, despite calls for the respect of the precautionary principle and despite all the recommendations, declarations and a number of statutory and legislative advances, there is still a lack of reaction to known or emerging environmental and health risks and virtually systematic delays in adopting and implementing effective preventive measures. Waiting for high levels of scientific and clinical proof before taking action to prevent well-known risks can lead to very high health and economic costs, as was the case with asbestos, leaded petrol and tobacco.

7. Moreover, the Assembly notes that the problem of electromagnetic fields or waves and the potential consequences for the environment and health has clear parallels with other current issues, such as the licensing of medication, chemicals, pesticides, heavy metals or genetically modified organisms. It therefore highlights that the issue of independence and credibility of scientific expertise is crucial to accomplish a transparent and balanced assessment of potential negative impacts on the environment and human health.

8. In light of the above considerations, the Assembly recommends that the member states of the Council of Europe:

8.1. in general terms:

8.1.1. take all reasonable measures to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields, especially to radio frequencies from mobile phones, and particularly the exposure to children and young people who seem to be most at risk from head tumours;

8.1.2. reconsider the scientific basis for the present electromagnetic fields exposure standards set by the International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection, which have serious limitations and apply “as low as reasonably achievable” (ALARA) principles, covering both thermal effects and the athermic or biological effects of electromagnetic emissions or radiation;

8.1.3. put in place information and awareness-raising campaigns on the risks of potentially harmful long-term biological effects on the environment and on human health, especially targeting children, teenagers and young people of reproductive age;

8.1.4. pay particular attention to “electrosensitive” persons suffering from a syndrome of intolerance to electromagnetic fields and introduce special measures to protect them, including the creation of wave-free areas not covered by the wireless network;

8.1.5. in order to reduce costs, save energy, and protect the environment and human health, step up research on new types of antennas and mobile phone and DECT-type devices, and encourage research to develop telecommunication based on other technologies which are just as efficient but have less negative effects on the environment and health;

8.2. concerning the private use of mobile phones, DECT phones, WiFi, WLAN and WIMAX for computers and other wireless devices such as baby phones:

8.2.1. set preventive thresholds for levels of long-term exposure to microwaves in all indoor areas, in accordance with the precautionary principle, not exceeding 0.6 volts per metre, and in the medium term to reduce it to 0.2 volts per metre;

8.2.2. undertake appropriate risk-assessment procedures for all new types of device prior to licensing;

8.2.3. introduce clear labelling indicating the presence of microwaves or electromagnetic fields, the transmitting power or the specific absorption rate (SAR) of the device and any health risks connected with its use;

8.2.4. raise awareness on potential health risks of DECT-type wireless telephones, baby monitors and other domestic appliances which emit continuous pulse waves, if all electrical equipment is left permanently on standby, and recommend the use of wired, fixed telephones at home or, failing that, models which do not permanently emit pulse waves;

8.3. concerning the protection of children:

8.3.1. develop within different ministries (education, environment and health) targeted information campaigns aimed at teachers, parents and children to alert them to the specific risks of early, ill-considered and prolonged use of mobiles and other devices emitting microwaves;

8.3.2. for children in general, and particularly in schools and classrooms, give preference to wired Internet connections, and strictly regulate the use of mobile phones by schoolchildren on school premises;

8.4. concerning the planning of electric power lines and relay antenna base stations:

8.4.1. introduce town planning measures to keep high-voltage power lines and other electric installations at a safe distance from dwellings;

8.4.2. apply strict safety standards for sound electric systems in new dwellings;

8.4.3. reduce threshold values for relay antennas in accordance with the ALARA principle and install systems for comprehensive and continuous monitoring of all antennas;

8.4.4. determine the sites of any new GSM, UMTS, WiFi or WIMAX antennas not solely according to the operators’ interests but in consultation with local and regional government officials, local residents and associations of concerned citizens;

8.5. concerning risk assessment and precautions:

8.5.1. make risk assessment more prevention oriented;

8.5.2. improve risk-assessment standards and quality by creating a standard risk scale, making the indication of the risk level mandatory, commissioning several risk hypotheses and considering compatibility with real life conditions;

8.5.3. pay heed to and protect “early warning” scientists;

8.5.4. formulate a human rights oriented definition of the precautionary and ALARA principles;

8.5.5. increase public funding of independent research, inter alia through grants from industry and taxation of products which are the subject of public research studies to evaluate health risks;

8.5.6. create independent commissions for the allocation of public funds;

8.5.7. make the transparency of lobby groups mandatory;

8.5.8. promote pluralist and contradictory debates between all stakeholders, including civil society (Aarhus Convention).

1 Text adopted by the Standing Committee, acting on behalf of the Assembly, on 27 May 2011 (see Doc. 12608, report of the Committee on the Environment, Agriculture and Local and Regional Affairs, rapporteur: Mr Huss).