Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Triangle Mountain Cell Phone Tower Protest / Researchers Warn / Cell tower concerns / Bad for Your Health / Reports forwarded to Ottawa / Smart Meters / Wi-Fi coverage comes with risks

W.E.E.P. News

Wireless Electrical and Electromagnetic Pollution News

11 November 2010

Triangle Mountain Cell Phone Tower Protest

/A\ News Vancouver Island


See the video -


Researchers Warn of Potential Dangers Posed by Cell Phone Towers

By Patrick Corcoran on November 9, 2010

Cell phone towers have become ubiquitous near residential areas in the U.S. and abroad, but precautions should be taken in siting the towers because of possible health risks, according to a report in the Canadian journal Environmental Reviews.

The report by University of Washington research professor Henry Lai and environmental journalist Blake Levitt notes that exposure to the radiofrequency radiation emitted by cell phone towers has been linked to a variety of health problems, including decreased libido, headaches, vision problems, and even cancer.

Though the evidence is inconclusive and, in some cases, contradictory, they say it warrants a requirement that the towers be at least 150 feet tall and separated from residential neighborhoods by at least 1,500 feet. Regular radiation monitoring of the installations should also be considered, they say.

Part of the difficulty in addressing the problem is that global society is so dependent on wireless technology, the authors say. Some 5 billion people worldwide use cell phones, while more than 280 million Americans are subscribers. Servicing this demand requires an extensive infrastructure: there are more than 250,000 cell phone towers in the U.S., up from fewer than 20,000 in 1995.

A comparable spike in the number of antenna supporting Wi-Fi and related technology is likely in the foreseeable future.

The present challenge is compounded by the fact that the U.S. has never invested in a comprehensive study of possible health effects from living near cellular towers.

Posted in Environmental Safety and Health, News & Notes


Cell tower concerns the parents at St. Andrew's

By Brian Babcock

Posted: 11/08/2010 07:31:32 PM PST

Parents of students attending St. Andrew's Episcopal School have expressed their concerns about St. Andrew's Episcopal Church's plan to allow T-Mobile to construct a cell phone tower in a church steeple. And school and church administrators have listened.

A lawyer has been hired by St. Andrew's to "reach out to T-Mobile" in hopes of terminating the contract the church signed with the telecommunications company last year.

"I always want to pay close attention to the feelings of the community," said Harry McKay, head of schools at St. Andrew's.

"This is a tight parent community, and they felt there was cause for concern. So we have reached out to T-Mobile to see if we can reconsider this contract," McKay said.

Although the issue is the cell tower, parents say another problem was the lack of communication from school administrators.

"It's been a sequence of unfortunate events," said Sue Garner, a Monte Sereno City Council member who has a child at the school.

T-Mobile approached the church in May 2009 with the idea to construct a tower on the Saratoga Avenue property, said McKay. The church would receive ongoing payment from T-Mobile for the use of the site.

McKay declined to state how much the church would receive.

The project was reviewed in June 2009 by a Joint Masters Facilities Committee, which a letter to parents states was "comprised of an equal number of church and school representatives and includes members with expertise in construction and construction contracts."

The commission reviewed reports and opinions from a variety of sources, McKay said. They included information from the Federal Communications Commission, the American Cancer Society and the World Health Organization.

McKay said the commission was comfortable with the information provided by the groups.

"Some people have expressed concern that living, working or going to school near a cell phone tower might increase the risk of cancer or other health problems. At this time, there is very little evidence to support this idea," the ACS reports on its website.

McKay also pointed to a recent study published on the British Medical Journal website that looked at 1,397 cases of childhood cancer in the United Kingdom between 1999 and 2001. The report concluded that "there is no association between risk of early childhood cancers and estimates of the mother's exposure to mobile phone base stations during pregnancy."

However, the World Health Organization states on its website that more studies are needed.

Parents agree and say there is no definitive research that proves there are no negative health impacts from the towers. Garner said parents would have expressed their opinions at a February Saratoga Planning Commission meeting if they had known about it.

The planning commission unanimously gave design approval for the project at a Feb. 10 public meeting. The approved project includes a "wireless telecommunications facility" that has eight antennas that will be located in the steeple. Other equipment would be located behind the church and screened by a 6-foot-high fence, a planning commission report states.

Four Saratogans, all associated with the church, spoke on the project and asked that the commission give its approval.

Garner said parents had recently expressed their reservations about the project to school and church representatives.

"I think it's a great school," Garner said. "The parents are committed to helping the school find the right solution."


Why Your Technology Is (Really) Bad for Your Health

November 9, 2010

By: Emily Tan

From cell phones and CrackBerries to iPhones and laptops, technology has become such an integral part of our daily lives, we wouldn't know how to live without it.

However, as convenient as these devices are, a new book argues they may take a not-well-known toll on our health. In "Zapped: Why Your Cell Phone Shouldn't Be Your Alarm Clock and 1,268 Ways to Outsmart the Hazards of Electronic Pollution," Dr. Ann Louise Gittleman, author of the New York Times bestseller "Fat Flush Plan," as well as 30 other books on health and nutrition, explores the various ways our bodies are affected by "electronic pollution" — and how to protect ourselves from these electromagnetic frequencies, or EMFs.

We had the chance to talk to Dr. Gittleman and find out how her own health scare inspired the book, and, according to her research, how your laptop may prevent you from having kids, and what's in asparagus that can protect you from evil EMFs.

Lemondrop: Where did the idea for this book come from?

Dr. Ann Louise Gittleman: It really started when I began to see some common symptoms among many of my clients who were very plugged in. I started seeing a litany of common symptoms like major headaches, light sensitivity, fatigue, skin problems, dizziness and a major lack of energy, among people who were doing everything right.

And that concerned me. When I started evaluating their lifestyles, the one thing I noted they all had in common is that they were all consistently using some sort of digital device. They were either on a wireless computer very frequently, living on their cell phones or were even working from their home office with a mobile phone.

Now, the real clincher was several years ago. I was diagnosed with a parotid tumor, which was benign. And I came to realize through my reading that it was associated with really heavy cell phone usage. So, to see what was going on with real-life clients and what was going on with this unusual situation with myself, that made me think that there was something going on with the environment. And lo and behold, I read and consumed everything I could at the time and figured out that we were all being zapped.

When you talk about being "zapped," you don't just mean anything that's connected to the Internet, but also the everyday appliances we use, right?

What I learned is that it's not only the latest technology, but there are some frightening links to the exposure of the fields that are coming from electronics — whether that's at work or it's your refrigerator or even that microwave oven that so many of us come to depend upon. So it really has to do with everything electrical.

And when Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, it was the beginning to a whole new Pandora's box of challenges that we had never faced before. That's the reason I talk about what we're exposed to when we were at our grandmother's houses in the beginning of the book: If you take a look at what we're exposed to [now] … we have over 200 times more EMFs and live in a sea of man-made frequencies and wavelengths that we've never been exposed to before. So this is a brand-new phenomenon, and I think we're moving into uncharted territory.

The whole idea that cell phones can cause tumors and cancer has been floated before, yet people have seemed to just ignore it. Why do you think we turn a blind eye to the potential dangers?

I think that convenience of using cell phones and microwaves overshadows everything else, and we move so quickly during our days that we're just conscious of the fact that these elements are electrical, and not that they're exposing us to these unseen pollutants. You can't see or smell the electrical pollution, but you're feeling the effects. But because they've become so much a part of life — and we've got such an active telecommunications industry — we're just concerned about convenience. No one is connecting the dots and saying, "Wow, I've been tired and I can't sleep. I'm taking more anti-depressants." And it's really all about convenience. And I think we're too busy to pay attention, and it is an inconvenient truth. People just don't want to look at it.

How likely is it that someone will get a brain tumor from their cell phones?

What we've seen is that they're heavy-duty users of their cell phones. Normally cancer may take up to 40 years to develop, so it's a slow-growing thing. And the fact that so many users are developing brain cancer after 10 years shows that something is going on because of the frequency of use and the severity of use. So it's becoming much more frequent. Everybody knows at least three or four people with some sort of cancer, whether it's a brain tumor or a parotid gland tumor or an auditory gland tumor.

But what really gets me concerned is that a lot of the cell phones are being advertised to kids who want something really fancy with some sort of cartoon character or some ringtone. And I think it's the children who are growing up with the technology and the cell phones and smartphones and so on that really are at much more risk than even the adults.

You mention a study that finds men who carry cell phones in their pockets have a lower sperm count. Where do you suggest they keep their cell phones?

If you have to carry your cell phone on your person, then make sure that the keypad is facing inward — that somehow can deflect some of the radiation. And I think it's important to just use the cell phone when you need it for emergency use or as much as possible use a special ear-tube headset so you're not touching the cell phone or it's not up to your head. I'm not a believer in wired or even wireless headsets.

Click here for the full report from -


Wireless tech reports forwarded to Ottawa


A raft of material dealing with the suspected negative health effects of Wi-Fi equipment, cellphones and other electromagnetic installations is to be forwarded by the city of Stratford to federal health and safety authorities.

City council, with the support of Mayor Dan Mathieson, agreed Monday to submit the reports and studies "for comment" at the suggestion of Coun. Bonnie Henderson.

Henderson initiated the move in light of a package of scientific reports supplied to the city by Martin Weatherall, a city resident who has been pressing the city and Festival Hydro to reconsider installations of city-wide smart meters he believes emit harmful radio-frequency electromagnetic radiation.

One of the reports, prepared by the BioInitiative Working Group, says in part, "Effects occur at non-thermal intensity exposure levels thousands of times below the levels that federal agencies say should keep the public safe."

The report asserts safety levels are out of whack in nearly every country in the world and that there should be a new bio-basis for determining safety.

City council agreed to forward the reports submitted by Weatherall following receipt of a Wi-Fi safety review and recommendations from Festival Hydro that assert the utility is following guidelines established by Canada's regulating authorities and is mandated by the Ontario government to install smart meters.

Council's action also followed receipt of correspondence from the Federal Health Minister that said in part: "Based upon a thorough review of scientific data, Health Canada has concluded that there is no convincing evidence of any known adverse health effects associated with radio frequency exposure at levels below the limits outlined in Safety Code 6 (the established safety standard)."

The World Health Organization (WHO) has come to a similar conclusion based on reviews of what it says are thousands of scientific studies but many independent researchers do not accept its findings. A 2006 WHO report says: "Over the past 15 years, studies examining a potential relationship between RF transmitters and cancer have been published. These studies have not provided evidence RF exposure from the transmitters increases the risk of cancer. Likewise, long-term animal studies have not established an increased risk of cancer from exposure to RF fields, even at levels that are much higher than produced by base stations and wireless networks."

The WHO website includes detailed descriptions of research done and that is continuing internationally on the subject of electromagnetic radiation and possible effects on human health.

At last night's city council meeting, Mathieson invited Weatherall to include in the council package to be sent to federal authorities any other information that he wished.


Information on Smart Meters

From: <>
Sent: Wednesday, November 10, 2010 4:09 AM

Subject: Errors in Smart Meter Firmware





Landis+Gyr Inks Four-Year Smart Meter Contract With PG&E

Landis+Gyr Announces Software Reseller Agreement with Grid Net


Stephen Chasko
Principal Security Engineer at Landis+Gyr


other data

Smart grid could be fertile ground for RFID technology


Blanket Wi-Fi coverage comes with risks

Published: November 09, 2010

By Kerry Crofton

Surely government safety regulations are protecting us from the effects of microwave radiation. So I thought. Several years of research have shaken that assurance.

One view, even among many public health advisors, is that the levels of radiation from wireless networks are low and do not cause concern.

Open to another opinion? Studies show evidence of harmful biological effects, at government-allowed "low levels," including damage to DNA (Lai, Singh, Philips); leakage of the protective blood brain barrier (Salford, Persson); suppression of the immune system (Johansson, Namamura) and increased cancer risks (Hardell).

Scientists have also found that the closer people live to cell tower antennas, the higher their incidence of leukemia (Michelozzi 2001, 2002, Hocking et al 1996, among others).

So one wonders how local and federal officials can be so certain that there is no problem and continue to assure us that "there is no credible evidence...."

Dr. Martin Blank, a biophysicist and cellular physiologist and associate professor at Columbia University, is one of the leading scientists in this field and happens to have a place in Victoria.

He commented, "Yes, the radiation levels are very low. However, in our research we have found evidence that these levels cause significant damage to living cells. Our research has shown that this radiation reacts with DNA, and activates protective cellular processes."

Dr. Lai's work on DNA damage shows similar findings.

Blank's concern isn't the "not in my backyard" reaction; he lectures at scientific conferences around the world and was one of the authors of the BioInitiative Report, written by an international team calling for regulations to be brought in line with the science.

Wireless radiation from cellphones is also a concern. Prof. Hardell, a Swedish oncologist who has been studying this issue for years, reported, "People who started mobile phone use before age 20 had a more than five-fold  increase in glioma, a form of brain cancer."

He said young people are more at risk because their brains and nervous systems are still developing. And as their heads are smaller and their skulls thinner, the radiation penetrates deeper into their brains.

The Interphone study examined possible connections between cellphone radiation exposure and the incidence of brain cancer. It reported that the risk increased by 40 per cent with cellphone usage of 30 minutes a day, over 10 years.

Cardiologist Stephen Sinatra reports that cardiac symptoms, including arrhythmia and tachycardia, can be related to wireless radiation exposure and calls this "the greatest medical threat of our time."

Cardiac effects could occur in any age group. How? Sinatra explains, "the heart is electrical in nature so it is vulnerable to electro-magnetic fields that can affect the rate and rhythm."

No one is claiming scientific certainty. There is, however, enough statistically significant evidence, especially with young people, to warrant caution.

This evidence jolted me into action to reduce my family's radiation exposure. I replaced our wireless router with a hard-wired, Ethernet cable, use our cellphone only briefly for urgent calls and replaced cordless phones with corded land lines. I wrote a book to alert others.

Fibre optics is highly recommended as the safe (and more secure) solution for wireless systems. The City of Victoria was using fibre optics for some of its communications.

This could be extended to really put Victoria on the map.

Perhaps we could rethink covering Victoria with Wi-Fi and follow the lead of many European cities that are removing this radiation exposure from public spaces including libraries and schools.

The precautionary principle may turn out to be the wisest innovation.

Kerry Crofton is a health educator and author in Victoria.

Web site e-mail

To sign up for WEEP News:  (provide name and e-mail address)

W.E.E.P. – The Canadian initiative to stop Wireless Electrical and Electromagnetic Pollution