Blumenthal criticizes the FCC & FDA for inadequate answers on outstanding public health questions. Wireless carriers concede they are not aware of any independent scientific studies on safety of 5G technologies
[WASHINGTON, DC]— During today’s Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee hearing on the future of 5G wireless technology and their impact on the American people and economy, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) raised concerns with the lack of any scientific research and data on the technology’s potential health risks. The full video of Blumenthal’s statement and exchange with industry representatives can be found here.
Blumenthal blasted the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—government agencies jointly-responsible for ensuring that cellphone technologies are safe to use—for failing to conduct any research into the safety of 5G technology, and instead, engaging in bureaucratic finger-pointing and deferring to industry.
In December 2018, Blumenthal and U.S. Representative Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18) sent a letter to FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr seeking answers regarding potential health risks posed by new 5G wireless technology. At today’s hearing, Blumenthal criticized Carr for failing to provide answers, and instead, just echoing, “the general statements of the FDA, which shares regulatory responsibility for cell phones with the FCC.” Blumenthal also decried the FDA’s statements as “pretty unsatisfactory.” A PDF of Carr’s complete response is available here.
During an exchange with wireless industry representatives, Blumenthal asked them whether they have supported research on the safety of 5G technology and potential links between radiofrequency and cancer, and the industry representatives conceded they have not.
” I believe that Americans deserve to know what the health effects are, not to pre-judge what scientific studies may show, and they also deserve a commitment to do the research on outstanding questions,” said Blumenthal. “We’re kind of flying blind here, as far as health and safety is concerned.”