Thanks to Ronald Powell Ph,D for placing two reviews of smart meter health impacts side by side. He compares the EMF Safety Network Survey results (USA 2011 ) to an Australian peer reviewed study by Dr. Frederica Lamech (AUS 2014). The results are astoundingly similar, especially when you account for the different methods for gathering the raw data. Network’s survey was distributed online with boxes of symptoms to check off, and Dr. Lamech’s study tallied written responses.
An excerpt from Take Back Your Power film, which is due to be released on September 5, 2013.
By: Joel M. Moskowitz, Ph.D. Director, Center for Family and Community Health, School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley
Many people are unaware that they are exposed to cell phone radiation when their cell phones are in standby mode. This occurs because their cell phone contacts the nearest cell tower periodically to update its location.
In a moving vehicle, cell phones in standby mode contact cell towers more frequently. Thus, exposure to cell phone radiation from one’s cell phone is greater in transit.
Two Swiss researchers, Damiano Urbinello and Martin Roosli, set out to measure personal cell phone radiation exposure during car, bus and train trips when one’s own phone was in standby mode.
Their study just published in the Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology identified a source of cell phone radiation that may constitute a public health problem. Namely, secondhand exposure to cell phone radiation from other people’s cell phones can be considerable while traveling on buses and trains (1).
During bus or train trips, individuals may be exposed to considerable amounts of cell phone radiation from other people’s cell phones. Buses and railroad cars act like “Faraday cages” that reflect much of the electromagnetic radiation emitted by cell phones throughout the vehicles’ interiors. Thus, all passengers, including infants and pregnant women as well as those without cell phones, may be exposed to considerable levels of cell phone radiation emitted by others’ phones.
As for car trips, the results of the study suggest that exposure to cell phone radiation from one’s own phone in standby mode is relatively low compared to overall exposures during public transit. Nonetheless, those who are concerned about their exposure to cell phone radiation should turn off their phones during car trips, or at the very least, avoid using their phones for calls.
● “The study indicates that own uplink exposure during car driving can be considerably reduced (about a fraction of 100) when turning off ones own mobile phone in order to prevent it from location updates.” (1)
The researchers found that GSM, the 2G carrier system in Europe which is used in the U.S. for voice communication by AT&T and T-Mobile, is particularly problematic compared to UMTS, a 3G carrier system used for data transmission. The researchers did not test CDMA which in the U.S. is used by Verizon and Sprint for voice calls. Other research has found that GSM emits 13 to 28 times more radiation on average than CDMA during phone calls. No published studies have examined exposures from LTE, the 4G carrier system now in widespread use in this country.
● “GSM levels in the reference scenario during bus and train rides were about 100 times higher than those during car rides. As a consequence of this high background exposure in trains, due to the use of other people’s mobile phone in a closed area intensified by the Faraday cage effect, the relative contribution of the location update from ones own mobile phone is small” (1)
The study also reported that smart phones, including the iPhone 4 and the Blackberry Bold 8800, which can operate on four radiofrequency bands emit more radiation during standby mode than classic phones, like the Nokia 2600, which operate on two bands.
Earlier this year, a study was published that examined cell phones in standby mode while stationary. Kjell Mild and his colleagues from Sweden found that under these conditions cell phones contacted the cell towers only once every two to five hours. They concluded that exposure to cell phone radiation in this situation “can be considered negligible.”
These studies should be replicated in the U.S. as well as in other countries since every cell phone carrier system operates differently.
In the meantime it is advisable to keep cell phone use in moving vehicles to a minimum as low level exposures to cell phone radiation have been associated with deleterious effects in humans.
To protect us from the health risks associated with cell phones and related devices (e.g., cordless phones, Wi-Fi, wireless Smart Meters and security systems, and cell towers), we need research independent of industry to develop biologically-
1) Urbinello D, Roosli M. Impact of one’s own mobile phone in stand-by mode on personal radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure. Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology advance online publication, Oct 24, 2012.
Source Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Basel, Switzerland and the University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.
When moving around, mobile phones in stand-by mode periodically send data about their positions. The aim of this paper is to evaluate how personal radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) measurements are affected by such location updates. Exposure from a mobile phone handset (uplink) was measured during commuting by using a randomized cross-over study with three different scenarios: disabled mobile phone (reference), an activated dual-band phone and a quad-band phone. In the reference scenario, uplink exposure was highest during train rides (1.19 mW/m(2)) and lowest during car rides in rural areas (0.001 mW/m(2)). In public transports, the impact of one’s own mobile phone on personal RF-EMF measurements was not observable because of high background uplink radiation from other people’s mobile phone. In a car, uplink exposure with an activated phone was orders of magnitude higher compared with the reference scenario. This study demonstrates that personal RF-EMF exposure is affected by one’s own mobile phone in stand-by mode because of its regular location update. Further dosimetric studies should quantify the contribution of location updates to the total RF-EMF exposure in order to clarify whether the duration of mobile phone use, the most common exposure surrogate in the epidemiological RF-EMF research, is actually an adequate exposure proxy.
2) Mild KH, Andersen JB, Pedersen GF. Is there any exposure from a mobile phone in stand-by mode? Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. 2012 Mar;31(1):52-
Source Department of Radiation Sciences, Ume niversity, Ume Sweden. kjell.hansson.mild@
Several studies have been using a GSM mobile phone in stand-by mode as the source for exposure, and they claimed that this caused effects on for instance sleep and testicular function. In stand-by mode the phone is only active in periodic location updates, and this occurs with a frequency set by the net operator. Typical updates occur with 2-5 h in between, and between these updates the phone is to be considered as a passive radio receiver with no microwave emission. Thus, the exposure in stand-by mode can be considered negligible.
Environmental Health Trust circulated this video today to warn women about the serious health risk of tucking their cell phones into their bras. They state, “Growing numbers of young women in this fast-paced connected society keep their phones in their bras, hijabs (headscarves), or pockets–unaware of manufacturers’ hidden warnings.” The iphone manual states to keep the phone 5/8″ away from the body. Stay tuned for Dr. Devra Davis’ film “Disconnect”.
“Decades of research indicate that exposure to EMF is associated with many adverse health effects including breast cancer (in both men and women) and other cancers, neurodegenerative diseases and impaired immune function. Existing public exposure standards for EMF are inadequate to protect public health because they are based on a short-term (30-minute) thermal effect.”
The Breast Cancer Fund Federal Policy Recommendations:
- Based on the scientific evidence set forth in The Bioinitiative Report and a growing body of additional research, exposure limits for electromagnetic radiation should be set at the federal level for:
- Extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields (ELF-EMF), including power lines, appliances, interior electric wiring an other devices; and
- Long term and cumulative radiofrequency (RF) radiation from outdoor pulsed sources including cell phone antennas, radar, TV and FM broadcast antennas and wireless internet antennas, and from indoor sources including cell phones, wireless internet equipment and radiation that permeates buildings from outdoor sources.
- With the setting of federal limits for non-ionizing radiation, special protections should be required for homes, schools and places where children spend large amounts of time.”
Nuclear radiation fallout is expected to recirculate in the environment from the Fukushima Japan disaster for another 40 years. Meanwhile, we are surrounded with ubiquitous and harder to avoid levels of wireless radiation from cell towers, cell phones, wi-fi, DECT phones, etc. Sage concludes that both types of exposures present similar biological effects:
“There is long-standing scientific evidence to suggest that low-dose ionizing radiation (LD-IR) and low-intensity non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation (LI-NIER) in the form of extremely low-frequency electromagnetic fields and radiofrequency radiation share similar biological effects.”
“Reducing preventable, adverse health exposures in the newly rebuilt environment to both LD-IR and LI-NIER is an achievable goal for Japan. Recovery and reconstruction efforts in Japan to restore the communications and energy infrastructure, in particular, should pursue strategies for reduction and/or prevention of both kinds of exposures.”
Sage writes, “In both kinds of exposure (chronic, low-level), these effects include genotoxicity and DNA fragmentation with chromosome aberrations; immune and inﬂammatory reactions (allergic reactions and development of hypersensitivity); reduction or suppression of the immune system or disregulation of the immune system; effects on lymphocytes and increased risk for lymphoproliferative diseases;and increased risk of other cancers in adults and in children.”
University of California at San Francisco faculty members write to John Holdren who is the Assistant to President for Science and Technology with their urgent concern about the public health threat of backscatter scanners, which are a new part of a airport passenger screening process.
Faculty members who signed the letter include doctors in biochemistry and biophysics, cancer and xray, and imaging experts. They call for a review of the scanners based on the lack of an independent safety review, and health risks to children, pregnant women, elders, and people with compromised immune systems. They write, “This is an urgent situation as these X-ray scanners are rapidly being implemented as a primary screening step for all air travel passengers. Our overriding concern is the extent to which the safety of this scanning device has been adequately demonstrated. This can only be determined by a meeting of an impartial panel of experts that would include medical physicists and radiation biologists at which all of the available relevant data is reviewed.”
The California Council on Science and Technology (CCST)Health Impacts of Radio Frequency From Smart Meters final report was released on March 31, 2011. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) comments challenged the CCST, stating, “CDPH suggests further review of the literature on non-thermal effects, which is complicated and controversial, but does not support a claim of no non-thermal health effects from radio frequency electromagnetic fields.”
CDPH also provided the following links to documents regarding the controversy over Smart Meter (radio frequency radiation-RF) safety:
- Correspondence Provided by Rick Kreutzer, California Department of Health
Rick Kreutzer, California Department of Public Health (March 10, 2011)
- Mixed Signals About Cellphones’ Health Risks Hang Up Research
The Chronicle (September 26, 2010)
- Summary of the Literature: What do we Know About Cell Phones and Health?
(July 20, 2010)
- Brain Tumor Risk in Relation to Mobile Telephone Use: Results of the INTERPHONE International Case – Control Study
Oxford University Press (March 8, 2010)
- Mobile Phones and Health
U.K. Department of Health
- Late Lessons from Early Warnings: Towards Realism and Precaution with EMF?
David Gee, European Environment Agency, (January 30, 2009)
- Statement of Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK) Concerning Mobile Phones and Health
Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority – STUK (January 7, 2009)
- Fact Sheet: Children and Safe Cell Phone Use
Toronto Public Health (July 2008)
- Children and Mobile phones: The Health of the Following Generations in Danger
Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (April 14, 2008)
- AFSSE Statement on Mobile Phones and Health
French Environmental Health and Safety Agency – AFSSE (April 16, 2003)
In addition to the following three studies, CDPH sent the following 3 study references to the CCST:
Electromagnetic Fields and DNA Damage: Phillips, J.L.; Singh, N.P.; Lai, H.;
Pathophysiology 16(2009) 79-88
Electromagnetic Fields and the Induction of DNA Strand Breaks: Ruiz-
Gomez, M.J.; Martinez-Morillo, M.; Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine
Radiofrequency and Extremely Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Field Effects
on the Blood-Brain Barrier: Nittby, H.; Grafstrom, G.; Eberhardt, J.L.;
Malmgren, L.; Brun, A.; Persson, B.R.R.; Salford, L.; Electromagnetic
Biology and Medicine 27:103-126, 2008
Other Comments to CCST Smart Meter Study http://www.ccst.us/projects/smart2/