Greens: No Cell Towers Near Schools/Preschools
4 November 2008
4 November 2008 - The Green Party released its health policy on electro-magnetic radiation today, calling for a requirement that cell towers not be located near schools or childcare centres and for an independent review of the New Zealand standard on Electro Magnetic Frequencies (EMFs).
"The Green Party wants the law changed so cell towers cannot be built next to houses or residential dwellings without consent. We also believe that residential dwellings should not be built within 300 meters of high-voltage pylons," Green Party Health Spokesperson Sue Kedgley says.
"We need a resource consent to get a veranda added to a house. Why should a telecommunications company be able to construct a 15 metre cell tower next to someone's home or a local childcare centre, without their permission?
"I am being contacted weekly by residents who are horrified to find a cell tower had been erected next to their homes, without any warning or consultation at all.
"Communities all over New Zealand are fighting the construction of cell towers. Many are desperate as some towers are near their homes and even children's bedrooms, and they are worried about the potential health effects - as well as the effect on their property values.
"It's an intolerable situation. There is no protection for communities whatsoever. Anyone could wake up and find a mini-cell tower constructed on a telephone pole near their house, or a tower popping up near to their home or local school.
"As more and more evidence emerges about the potential adverse health effects of low level exposure to EMF, the Government must take a precautionary approach and offer protection to residents who don't want to be exposed to EMF," Ms Kedgley says.
Other countries such as Germany and Sweden have much stronger regulations than New Zealand. EMFs are increasingly recognised as a potential trigger for cancers such as childhood leukaemia.