A Report on Non-Ionizing Radiation

ICNIRP: Microwave News Article Archive (2004 - )

May 21, 2007

It's the murky disconnect that undermines public confidence in EMF exposure standards: While epidemiological studies point to an increased risk of childhood leukemia at exposures as low as 3-4 mG, the ICNIRP exposure standard is over 200 times higher. That is, ICNIRP sees nothing wrong with exposing kids to 999 mG, 24/7. One reason this disparity is baffling is that Anders Ahlbom of Sweden's Karolinska Institute is both the chair of ICNIRP's committee on epidemiology and the person whose work —more than anyone else's other than Nancy Wertheimer's— has established the plausibility of the 3-4 mG threshold. The IEEE standard is even more out of sync: At over 9,000 mG: it's more than nine times higher than the ICNIRP limit.

March 23, 2007

The government of Ireland released a report yesterday that generally dismisses health concerns over RF radiation from mobile phones and base stations, as well as concerns over EMFs from power lines. The report, Health Effects of Electromagnetic Fields, was prepared by a four-member panel chaired by Mike Repacholi, the former head of the WHO EMF project. The panel concluded that, "So far no adverse short or long-term health effects have been found from exposure to the RF signals produced by mobile phones and base station transmitters" and that "there are no data available to suggest that the use of mobile phones by children is a health hazard."

October 29, 2006

Richard Saunders of the U.K. Health Protection Agency has been elected to ICNIRP. Saunders leads the non-ionizing radiation group at the HPA (formerly the NRPB). His predecessor at the NRPB/HPA, Alasdair McKinlay, served on the commission from 1992 to 2004 and was the chairman for four years beginning in 2000. In 2004, Saunders spent a year working with Mike Repacholi, the chairman emeritus of ICNIRP, at the WHO EMF project in Geneva.    

September 19, 2006

The International Commission for Electromagnetic Safety or ICEMS today released a position statement, the Benevento Resolution, committing ICEMS and the 31 scientists from 13 countries who signed the statement, to promoting precautionary EMF policies and research to resolve uncertainties over health risks. The statement grew out of a meeting held in Benevento, Italy, last February, that was dedicated to Ross Adey who died in 2004. (ICEMS also issued a press release). One of ICEMS' long-term goals is to present itself as an alternative to ICNIRP, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection.  

July 7, 2006

Being a member of ICNIRP or the WHO EMF project means having a ticket to ride. A couple of days ago, the traveling road show was in Malta. Mike Repacholi, Bernard Veyret and Paolo Vecchia showed up at a forum organized by the local communications authority, titled "The Reality Behind EMFs."

June 17, 2006

Residents of Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, may have the highest exposures to power-frequency magnetic fields anywhere in the world. A survey by the Taiwan EPA found that 18% of elementary school classrooms, hospitals and homes had levels exceeding 10 mG (1 µT), according to the June 15 Taipei Times.

The EPA made the measurements after a study by Fu Jen Catholic University found that 95 primary schools and 49 junior high schools, with a total of more than 18,000 students, are within 20 meters of high-voltage power lines. The EPA administrator has said that the ICNIRP standard of 833 mG does not provide sufficient protection, the Times reported last February.

June 14, 2006

Most people don't notice those little boxes stuck on the sides of buildings, but if you live in a city, they're most likely to be your principal source of microwave exposure. That is, of course, when you're not using a cell phone.

January 5, 2005

Going through our collection of clips on the new Stewart report this afternoon, we came across the following quote by Paolo Vecchia, the chair of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), in a press release issued by the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) on January 11:

“Because EMF exposure guidelines are based on worst-case hypotheses and include reduction factors providing safety margins for possible lack of data, the Commission does not need to create separate guidelines to protect special groups such as children.”

October 18, 2004

Members of each of the teams that have reported links between mobile phones and acoustic neuromas have recently published reviews of the RF epidemiological literature.

March 31, 2004

The U.K. National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) is recommending the adoption of the ICNIRP limits for human exposures to EMFs in the 0-300 GHz frequency range. In its Advice, issued on March 31, the NRPB cites its “review of the science, the need to adopt a cautious approach and recognition of the benefits of international harmonization” as the rationale for tightening the U.K. standards, which are among the least restrictive in the world.

The board stresses that it may be necessary to adopt “further precautionary measures” for the exposure of children to power-frequency magnetic fields.

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