Probable Health Effects associated with cell phone towers
by: Dr. Neil Cherry
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Probable health effects associated
with mobile base stations in communities: the need for health studies
Dr Neil Cherry
8th June 2000
Environmental Management and Design Division
P.O. Box 84
Canterbury, New Zealand
Probable health effects associated with mobile base stations in communities: the need for health studies
Dr Neil Cherry
Canterbury, New Zealand.
8th June 2000
In 1995 a New Zealand Environment Court (as the Planning Tribunal) decided to set a public exposure limit of 2m W/cm2 for from a BellSouth GSM cell site. This was based on evidence of biological effects, including calcium ion efflux, enhanced ODC activity and EEG change down to 2.9m W/cm2. There was also epidemiological evidence of childhood leukaemia at 2.4m W/cm2. The primary expert witness for BellSouth was WHO staff member Dr Michael Repacholi from Australia. He stated that there was no evidence of adverse effects below the international guideline of SAR = 0.08W/kg because the only effect of RF/MW was tissue heating. The Court's decision rejected this position and set the exposure level of 1% of the standard. The decision also stated that this should be revised with new evidence. Subsequently two Australian studies were carried out to assure the public that both cell phones and cell sites were safe. Both of these studies, Hocking et al. (1996) and Repacholi et al. (1997), showed that leukaemia/lymphoma was more than doubled for people and mice.
It is now clear that the results of both of these were quite predicable from earlier human and rodent studies. This includes studies that are claimed by ICNIRP, WHO and Dr Repacholi (both in reviews and in the Environment Court) to show that there were no adverse effects. To this day cell phone companies and some government bodies, such as the U.K independent expert committee, chaired by Sir William Stewart, that included Dr Repacholi, still claims that there is no evidence that cell phone radiation is harmful. There is a large and growing body of published scientific studies that show that this is not true. This includes Dr Repacholi's own research. Over forty cell phone radiation studies are cited here. They show that cell phone radiation mimics the biological and epidemiological studies for EMR over the past 4 decades. This includes DNA strand breakage, chromosome aberrations, increased oncogene activity in cells, reduced melatonin, altered brain activity, altered blood pressure and increased brain cancer.
Analogue cell phones use FM RF/MW signals and digital cell phones use pulsed microwaves that are very similar to radar signals. FM radio, TV signals and radar exposures cause significant and dose response increases in brain cancer, leukaemia and other cancers, and cardiac, neurological and reproductive health effects. Hence it is highly probable that cell sites and cell phones are causing many adverse health effects. Already cell phone radiation has been shown to significantly increase all these effects.
Public health surveys of people living in the vicinity of cell site base stations should be being carried out now, and continue progressively over the next two decades. This is because prompt effects such as miscarriage, cardiac disruption, sleep disturbance and chronic fatigue could well be early indicators of the adverse health effects. Symptoms of reduced immune system competence, cardiac problems, especially of the arrhythmic type and cancers, especially brain tumour and leukaemia are probable. However, since cell phone radiation has already been shown to reduce melatonin, damage DNA and chromosomes, surveys should look for a very wide range health effects and not be limited to a narrow set. In carrying out health surveys, the researchers must be mindful of the actual and realistic radiation patterns from cell sites and not to make the mistake of assuming a simple, uniform radial pattern.
When measured or realistic radial radiation patterns from radio/TV broadcast towers are matched with cancer rates in people living in the vicinity of high-powered radio and television towers they produce consistent significant dose response relationships. These prove that chronic exposure to very low level RF radiation causes sleep disturbance, melatonin reduction and cancer in many part of the human body.
With the consistency between the biological effects of studies involving powerlines, electrical occupations, diathermy, radio, radar and cell phone electromagnetic radiation exposure, it is highly probable that these adverse health effects will be found in the vicinity of cell sites. Because of the small population numbers around single sites, these effects will only be detectable by studying populations around hundreds of cell sites.
Two early studies were cited by Dr Repacholi in the NZ Environment Court as showing no adverse health effect, the Korean War Study, Robinette et al. (1980) and the U.S. Embassy in Moscow Study, Lilienfeld et al. (1978). Dr John Goldsmith, an eminent environmental epidemiologist and expert witness for the residents, disagreed. He stated that both of these studies show increases in cancer in radar exposed populations. In the U.S. Embassy Study, with peak exposures in the range 5 to 15 m W/cm2. Dr Cherry's evidence showed that the daily average exposures for most of the period, for which the peak was 5m W/cm2 for 9hr/day, with a small period of 15m W/cm2, for 18 hr/day, averaging 2.4m W/cm2. It was realized later that these measurements were for the outside wall on the fifth floor at one end of the Embassy building. Pollack (1979) points out that the inside exposures were very much smaller and so the observed adverse health effects are associated with exposures somewhat less than 0.1m W/cm2.
Korean War Study:
Robinette et al. (1980) studies the health and mortality records for about 40,000 technically trained sailors who had served on U.S. Naval ships during the Korean War. A job exposure matrix survey was carried out among 5% of three occupational groups thought to be more highly exposed. This showed a significant (p=0.03) dose-response increase in total mortality and respiratory cancer (p<0.05). This survey showed a gradient in mean exposure between the three surveyed occupational groups, Electronics Technician (ET), Fire Control Technician (FT) and Aviation Electronics Technician (AT). Dichotomizing between AT as highly exposed and ET as low exposure gives Table 1.
Low High Risk Ratio 95 % CI
Causes of Death
All Deaths 33.7 60.5 1.79 1.52 - 2.12
Accidental Death 13.5 29.6 2.20 1.72 - 2.82
Motor Vehicle Death 6.3 6.1 0.97 0.60 - 1.59
Suicide, Homicide, Trauma 4.4 6.1 1.38 0.83 - 2.29
Suicide 3.4 2.7 0.80 0.39 - 1.63
All Diseases 15.2 23.5 1.55 1.19 - 2.01
Malignant Neoplasms 5.0 8.2 1.66 1.06 - 2.60
Digestive and Peritoneum 1.1 1.2 1.07 0.35 - 3.21
Respiratory 1.2 2.1 1.75 0.72 - 4.25
Eye, Brain, CNS (FT/ET) 0.4 0.9 2.40 0.57 - 10.03
Skin 0.2 0.6 2.66 0.45 - 15.94
Lymphatic and Hematopoietic 1.4 3.1 2.22 1.02 - 4.81
Circulatory System Disease 7.6 9.5 1.24 0.83 - 1.85
Digestive System Disease 0.8 2.7 3.27 1.35 - 7.89
Other Diseases 1.6 2.7 1.71 0.78 - 3.74
This also sows a significant increase in all mortality, but also for accidental death, death from All Diseases, Malignant Neoplasms, Lymphatic and Hematopoietic cancer and Digestive System Disease. Most other symptoms are elevated.
This shows dose-response relationships for all mortality, death by all disease, death by cancer and death by Leukaemia/Lymphoma. The Radarman and Radioman are in fact moderately exposed to RF/MW radiation and hence the low exposure group shows higher mortality rates than unexposed groups of the same age.
Robinette et al. show that radar exposure causes many other significant increases in morbidity. Comparing rates for the ET group compared to the FT+AT group there is significantly higher cardiovascular illness (p<0.001), "Psychophysiologic Disorders", p<0.05, and muscular, bone and joint illnesses including bone and muscle cancer, p<0.001.
It is clearly wrong for the authors and anyone else to claim that this study doesn't show any adverse effects from radar exposure.
U.S. Embassy in Moscow Study:
Goldsmith (1997) reported elevated mutagenesis and carcinogenesis among the employees and dependents that were chronically exposed to a very low intensity radar signal the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in the 1950's to 1970's. For most of the time the external signal strength was measured at 5 m W/cm2 for 9 hours/day on the West Facade of the building where the radar was pointed, Lilienfeld et al. (1978). To get the full strength of the signal a person would have to stand at an open window on the west side of the building at the 6th floor, Pollack (1979). Hence allowing for the internal signal strengths to be between 20 and 100 times lower, the occupants of the embassy were exposed to a long-term average radar signal in the range of 0.02 to 0.1m W/cm2. Blood tests showed significantly elevated chromosome aberrations in more than half of the people sampled. Leukaemia rates were elevated for adults and children.
The key results included:
The all cause mortality rate for Moscow males as 0.42 (0.3-0.6) and for females 1.1 (0.5-1.9). Hence males, primarily State Department employees, were much healthier and females were as healthy as the average U.S. residents. This is a good example of the "healthy worker" effect. State Department selection procedures rule out a range of unhealthy people and favour healthy people.
The following tables set out some of the key results
from the data tables within Lilienfeld et al. (1978). One of the most striking
results is given in Lilienfeld Table 6.18. This shows the rates of various
sicknesses as a function of years of service in the Embassy in Moscow and
hence, years if low level radar exposure. All of these symptoms show significant
dose-response relationships. The sickness rates increased independent of
the age of arrival and faster than the influence of aging.
Table 2: Sickness rates increased in Moscow with years of service: (Table 6.18)
Under 2 yrs 2-3 years 4 + years p-value for trend
Number of people 316 455 45
Person-years 3709 5570 568
Male Conditions (%)
Present Health Summary 5.4 9.7 16.2 0.05
Arthritis/rheumatism 4.3 6.5 8.8 0.02
Back Pain 4.0 7.7 11.8 0.04
Ear problems 3.8 5.6 14.7 0.02
Vascular system 0.8 2.7 11.8 0.004
Skin & Lymphatic 9.4 12.2 28.0 0.02
Female Conditions (%)
Vaginal discharge 4.2 13.8 17.5 0.04
Table 6.31 in Lilienfeld, Table 3 here, show elevated and significantly elevated neurological symptoms for male employees who worked in the radar exposed situation.
Table 3: Neurological Symptoms per 1000 p-y, Male employees: (Table 6.31)
Moscow Comparison RR p-value
Depression 1.3 0.73 1.78 0.004
Migraine 1.8 0.97 1.86
Lassitude 1.2 0.78 1.54
Irritability 1.3 0.66 1.97 0.009
Nervous Disorders 1.5 0.64 2.34
Difficulty in Concentrating 1.4 0.52 2.96 0.001
Memory Loss 1.6 0.50 3.20 0.008
Dizziness 1.2 0.85 1.41
Finger Tremor 1.3 0.71 1.83
Insomnia 1.1 0.90 1.22
Neurosis 1.3 0.76 1.71
These symptoms are consistent with the "Microwave Syndrome" of the "Radiofrequency Radiation Sickness", Johnson-Liakouris (1998). Mild et al. (1998) identified significant dose-response relationships for the following symptoms from the use of mobile phones: Memory Loss, Difficulty in Concentrating, Headache and Fatigue. Hence it is now shown and known that RF/MW exposure from extremely low but chronic exposure over many years, occupational exposure and cell phone use all produces significant and consistent neurological symptoms. The Risk Ratios were quite large but they were not quite significant because of the very small sample numbers.
Table 4 shows the congenital malformations and cancer
in children. Some of this data was shown by the late Dr John Goldsmith
to the Environment Court in New Zealand. It was this data that the court
used for its decision.
Table 4: Congenital Malformations of children after the first tour:
Conditions Moscow Comparison RR Number of children
Leukaemia and cancer 1.2 0.84 1.43 1
Blood Disorders 1.7 0.42 4.05 7
Mental, Nervous Condn. 1.8 0.36 5.0 8
Behavioural Problems 1.4 0.68 2.06 7
Chronic Disease 1.1 0.88 1.25 7
Blood tests showed significant alteration of white blood cells and chromosome aberrations, Table 5.
5 Extreme 0
4 Severe 6
3.5 Intermediate 5
3 Moderate 7
2.5 Intermediate 5
2 Questionable 5
1 Normal 6
Patients with mutagenic level of 3 and above were advised not to reproduce until 6 months after somatic levels had returned to 2 or 1. This warning applied to 68 % of the patients in this sample. Staff with elevated chromosome aberrations were advised not to have children for until six months after they had returned to near normal.
A survey of cancer mortality rates is summarized in Table 6. This shows that despite the extremely small sample size and the very significant exposure dilution in the years between residence in Moscow and the survey results, there are highly elevated and significantly elevated rates of mortality from cancer Lilienfeld et al. shows significantly increases chromosome aberration and increased cancer rates. This was recently also found in mice, Vijayalaxmi et al. (1997). This supports the result of Repacholi et al. (1997), and Chou et al. (1992), both of whom found significant increases in cancer in chronically exposed rodents.
The dominant cancers are brain tumor and leukaemia
and reproductive organ cancer. But this study, like the Korean War Study,
confirms that extremely low level chronic microwave exposure is associated
which very significant increases in illness and mortality in organs across
the whole body, consistent with widespread cellular chromosome damage.
Significantly elevated chromosome aberrations were measured in this case,
Table 6, as well as significant alterations in white and red blood cell
counts, Jacobson (1969). This would also be the expected result from reduced
Table 6: Cancer Mortality Rates:
Male employees (Table 6.37) Moscow Comparison RR
Skin Cancer 1.5 0.69 2.17
Benign Neoplasms 1.4 0.75 1.87
Female employees (Table 6.38)
Malignant Neoplasm (Excl. skin) 1.7 0.63 2.86 (p=0.06)
Adult Dependents: (Tables 7.12, 7.13)
Obs. Exp SMR (95%CI)
All malignant Neoplasms 5 1.5 3.3 (1.1-7.7)
Digestive Organs Cancer 1 0.26 3.8 (0.1-21.2)
Pancreas Cancer 1 0.03 33.3 (0.8-185)
Breast Cancer 1 0.4 2.5 (0.1-13.9)
Ovarian Cancer 3.0
Multiple Myeloma 1.5
Arteriolosclerotic 2 0.59 3.4 (0.4-12.3)
All malignant Neoplasms 7 3 2.3 (0.9-4.7)
Brain tumor 2 0.1 20.0 (2.4-72.2)
Lung cancer 1 0.44 2.3 (0.4-93)
All Accidents 4 1 4.0 (1.1-10.2)
Table 14: cont'd:
Obs. Exp SMR (95%CI)
Suicide 1 0.36 2.8 0.1-15.6)
Children Living In (Table 7.16)
All Malignant Neoplasms 2 0.5 3.8 (0.5-13.7)
Leukaemia 1 0.2 5.3 (0.1-29.5)
Suicide 1 0.29 3.4 (0.0-1.6)
Children Living out
All Malignant Neoplasms 2 0.83 2.4 (0.3-8.7)
Leukaemia 1 0.3 3.4 (0.1-18.9)
Suicide 1 0.3 3.3 (0.1-18.4)
Early Papers Conclusions:
Both Robinette et al. (1980) and Lilienfeld et al. (1978) show significant increases in a range of illnesses, including cancer, cardiac and neurological symptoms from chronic exposure to radar. Both Sir Austin Bradford Hill, Hill (1965), and Goldsmith (1992) state that elevated Odds and Risk Ratios are also relevant to the public health protection basis in epidemiology. Both of these studies also show significant increases and dose-response increases that are indicative of causal relationships, Hill (1965). Both studies show elevated leukaemia. Leukaemia was also significantly elevated for amateur radio operators, Milham (1988), SMR = 162. In a vary large and well conducted study, Szmigielski (1996), Polish Military Personnel exposed to RF/MW radiation from radio and radar showed very highly significant elevations of leukaemia incidence and other cancers. For Leukaemia/Lymphoma RR = 6.31, 95%CI: 3.12-14.32, p<0.001. For Chronic Myelocytic Leukaemia, RR = 13.9, 95%CI: 6.72-22.12, p<0.001.
Global Leukaemia dose response for RF/MW exposure:
Epidemiological studies reveal significant elevations of All Cancer and Leukaemia for military occupations exposed to radar and radio, for amateur radio operators and electrical workers exposed to RF signals.
Category Type Ratio Interval
Polish Military Szmigielski (1996) High ALL 5.75 1.22-18.16
(Mortality) CML 13.90 6.72-22.12
CLL 3.68 1.45-5.18
AML 8.62 3.54-13.67
All Leuk. 6.31 3.12-14.32
Korean War Robinette et al. (1980) High Leuk/Lymp 2.22 1.02-4.81
Radar Exposure (Mortality) AT/ET
Radio and TV Milham (1985) Moderate Acute Leuk. 3.44
Repairmen Leuk. 1.76
Amateur Radio Milham (1988) Moderate AML 1.79 1.03-2.85
UK Sutton Dolk et al. (1997a) Moderate Leuk 1.83 1.22-2.74
North Sydney Hocking et al.(1996) Low All Leuk. 1.17 0.96-1.43
TV/FM towers ALL+CLL 1.39 1.00-1.92
(Mortality) AML+CML 1.01 0.82-1.24
Other Leuk 1.57 1.01-2.46
UK TV/FM Dolk et al. (1997b) Low Adult Leuk. 1.03 1.00-1.07
Note: ALL : Acute Lymphatic Leukemia; CLL: Chronic Lymphatic Leukaemia; AML Acute Myeloid Leukaemia; CML: Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia; and All Leuk.: All Adult Leukaemia.
As a class of studies military exposures produce high Rate Ratios (RRs), recreational and occupational exposures are intermediate and residential exposures are low. Table 7 summarizes several studies that are ranked in mean exposure order. Military, occupational and residential studies shows a global dose response relationship for increased adult leukaemia and RF/MW exposure with a dose-response threshold close to zero.
When actual residential exposures are considered
in detail, comparing actual radial radiation patterns with cancer patterns,
dose responses for residential cancer are also shown by Selvin et al. (1992),
Hocking et al. (1996), Dolk et al. (1997 a,b) and Michelozzi et al. (1998).
These show a causal effect of adult and childhood leukaemia at levels of
residential exposure involving exposure levels produced by cell sites out
to over 500m.
Dose-Response Cancers in the Vicinity of Broadcast Towers:
With the similarity of FM radio and TV signals and analogue cell phones, studies of health effects at very low mean exposure levels for those living in the vicinity of broadcast towers is relevant to the consideration of the health effects around cell sites.
Broadcast towers provide a unique opportunity for determining whether or not RF/MW exposures are causally related to cancer. This arises from two factors. The first is the large populations that may be exposed and the second is the particular shape of the radial RF patterns. The ground level radial RF radiation patterns are complex undulating functions of the carrier frequency, the height of the tower and the antenna horizontal and vertical radiation patterns. When rates of disease follow these patterns it excludes all other factors, removing all possible confounders.
Around broadcast towers the ground level exposure patterns are a function of the power of the source signal and the antenna gain, The gain, is expressed as a function of the Equivalent Isotropic Radiated Power (EIRP) is a function of the technology used to focus the signal. Antennae are complex elements that attempt to efficiently focus the main beam and minimize the side-lobes. The ability to do this to some extent is a function of the carrier frequency. Because of these side-lobes a complex antenna pattern is formed with undulating peaks in the 'near field' towers, which extends out to 5 to 6 km typically. Figures 2 to 5.
Figure 2 shows the measured radial pattern near ground level around the Empire State Building in the 1930's, formed by the VHF stations installed on it tower.
Vertical Antenna Patterns:
The vertical antenna pattern is a function of the antenna type and the carrier frequency. Figure 4 shows the vertical antenna pattern of an 8-dipole array for a 98 MHz FM station.
Horizontal antenna patterns:
Antennae are not only capable of focussing RF radiant power into vertical beams but can also focus the beams in the horizontal plain to send most of the broadcast signal towards most of the listeners and viewers. Two examples are given in Figures 7 and 8. The first is for the FM radio signal shown in Figure 4. The second is for the UHF antenna, the vertical pattern of which is in Figure 5.
When considering epidemiological studies of health effects in association with broadcast towers it is essential that the complex radial and horizontal RF radiation patterns are understood and used. This must be carried out along with other geographic features such as the existence of shadows produced by hills on one side and elevated exposure on the hill slopes facing a tower. Lakes, ocean, Central Business Districts (CBD) and parks are not residential areas and must be incorporated into the analysis of incidence of health effects.
Mean Personal Exposures:
Personal exposures will be somewhat less than the direct peak exposure at a given location. Indoor exposures are very much lower than the outdoor exposures, Pollack (1979) and McKenzie, Yin and Morrell (1998). McKenzie at al. measured some locations around the TV/FM towers in North Sydney. They report that at one location close to the towers the measurement on the roof was 3m W/cm2, at street level 0.066m W/cm2 and inside the house 0.017m W/cm2. Hence the exposure reduction factors are 46 and 176 respectively.
A residential exposure factor is estimated using
reduction factor of 1 for direct exposure, 20 for outside and away and
50 inside. The typical weekly exposed:outside:away:inside ratio is 6: 20:
12: 130 giving an overall residential exposure factor (REF) of 0.061. This
is rounded up to 0.075.
Exposure dilution is an important factor in EMR health studies. Many of the health effects take decades to develop or are only able to be studied using long-term health records. Every person has a different distribution of exposure experiences. It is rare to identify a large group with a consistent high exposure to compare the health effects incidence rates in a comparative group with consistent low exposures. Within groups there can be higher average exposures compared to other groups. Hence health effects are related to mean exposures not peak exposures. 'Clean' dichotomization is very difficult to accomplish. In residential studies migration is a source of dilution. Cancer rates are reduced by exposed people leaving the study area and by previously unexposed moving into the study area.
The vast majority of factors that influence these studies reduce the apparent effects. This shows that the actual effects will be stronger than those indicated by the ratios and statistics used.
Epidemiological studies of Residential RF/MW exposure:
Sutra Tower Study: Selvin et al. (1992):
Professor Steve Selvin and his colleagues were interested in developing a statistical method for identifying from residential data, who was appropriately characterized as "exposed" compared with "non-exposed". They chose to use a data set for 4 childhood cancers, representing about 50 % of the total childhood cancer, for the San Francisco City area. A prominent feature of the area is the Sutra Tower. It is a very tall tower on a hill which can be seen from all over San Francisco. Since this is the primary radio and TV broadcast facility in the Bay Area, there are very high-powered outputs from the Tower. In broadcast facility in 1997 it had over 980 kW of VHF TV and FM radio, and 18,270 kW of UHF TV, expressed as EIRP, Hammett and Edison (1997). The tower is 300m high on a 276 m hill, placing the majority of the high-powered antennas at 520 m AMSL. The locations of children with leukaemia and "all cancer" are shown in Figures 9 and 10.
It is evident from the maps of childhood cancer cases, Figure 10 shows a large concentration of all cancers, primarily brain tumour, with 1 km of the tower. Outside this there is a ring with low cancer rates and then a ring with higher cancer rates. Selvin et al. (1992) assumed a linear relationship with exposed and found a distance-related peak at 1.75 km. Figure 11 shows the measured and fitted radial exposure curve.
The mean radial exposure regime, for this analysis,
was assumed to be isotropic and given by Figure 11. Direct exposures were
reduced by a factor of 0.075 to allow for mean residential exposure. These
estimates are given in Table 7. Thus the radial childhood cancer rates
can be compared with a much more realistic radial radiation exposure pattern.
The resulting estimates are summarized in Table 8.
Table 8: Radial rings, with estimated population,
Risk Ratios and Cumulative Risk Ratios, for white childhood brain tumour,
Leukaemia, Leukaemia + Lymphoma, and All Cancer, in association with RF/MW
exposure from the Sutra Tower, San Francisco.
Est. Population 1138 4334 3558 4489 5146 5566 4939 5386 8141 7988
Estimated personal mean dose
in m W/cm2. 0.25 0.05 0.08 0.06 0.06 0.05 0.03 0.04 0.015 0.007
Brain Tumour 11.81 2.48 3.02 1.80 2.09 1.93 1.63 1.00 0.99 1.01
Cumulative 11.81 4.42 3.87 3.18 2.88 2.66 2.49 2.26 2.02 1.86
Leukaemia 1.26 1.32 2.02 1.92 1.67 1.80 2.03 1.33 0.53 1.26
Cumulative 1.26 1.31 1.59 1.70 1.69 1.72 1.77 1.70 1.48 1.44
Leuk + Lymph 2.47 1.08 2.63 2.08 2.54 1.85 2.27 1.56 0.57 1.05
Cumulative 2.47 1.37 1.86 1.94 2.10 2.05 2.08 2.00 1.73 1.62
"All Cancer" 4.88 1.44 2.73 2.01 2.43 1.87 2.35 2.11 0.68 1.04
Cumulative 4.88 2.16 2.38 2.26 2.31 2.43 2.21 2.19
Plotting the radial All Cancer RR and mean resident RF exposure is shown in Figure 12.
Contrary to the conclusion of Selvin et al. and ICNIRP (1998), who claim that this study shows no evidence of adverse effects, the spatial data when related to actual radial radiation exposure patterns forms significant linear dose-response relationships, with All Cancer and Brain Tumour having extremely significant dose-response relationships.
Figure 12 shows that the radial childhood cancer rate varies with the same pattern as the radial RF exposure. This then forms the highly significant dose-response relationship in Figure 13. No other factor varies like this. Hence this is a causal relationship.
Maskarinec, Cooper and Swygert (1994) report significant elevation of childhood leukaemia in the vicinity of radio towers in Hawaii, SIR = 2.09 (95%CI: 1.08-3.65), from a small sample of children.
North Sydney Leukaemia Study:
Hocking et al. (1996) reported significant elevation of childhood and adult leukaemia incidence and mortality around the TV/FM towers in North Sydney. This study was carried out to allay public fears about siting cell sites in residential properties in Australia, Hocking (pers. Comm.). The authors correctly recognized that mobile phone base stations (cell sites) have not been exposing people long enough to produce cancer because of the cancer latency periods are long. Because of the then dominance of analogue cell phones using FM radiation they decided to study the residents exposed to FM signals from FM radio and TV stations around three tall towers in North Sydney. When the study was commenced Dr Hocking was the Medical Director of the Telstra Research Laboratory. At the time of publication Dr Hocking had become an independent public health consultant and the paper was published with the support of his professional colleagues.
This study has been criticized by McKenzie at al. (1998) who pointed out that a single municipality, Lane Cove, produced most of the increased cancers. Hocking et al. (1998) reject their criticism. The Lane Cove population is closest to the more power towers 1 and 2, and the horizontal radiation patterns are rotated to point towards the SW where most of the Sydney population lives. Therefore the vertical and horizontal radiation patterns suggests that in the North Sydney area the mean exposures would rank the three municipalities from low to high as Willoughby, North Sydney and Lane Cove, with childhood leukaemia rates of 6.1 (3.0-10.8), 7.1 (2.8-14.6), 16.7 (9.7-26.8), respectively. This would then produce a dose response. Figure 15 shows the locations.
Cancer Type RR (95% CI) Cases
Total Leukaemia 1.24 (1.09-1.40) 1206
Lymphatic Leukaemia 1.32 (1.09-1.59) 536
Myeloid Leukaemia 1.09 (0.91-1.32) 563
Other Leukaemia 1.67 (1.12-2.49) 107
Total Leukaemia 1.17 (0.96-1.43) 847
Lymphatic Leukaemia 1.39 (1.00-1.92) 267
Myeloid Leukaemia 1.01 (0.82-1.24) 493
Other Leukaemia 1.57 (1.01-2.46) 87
Total Leukaemia 1.58 (1.07-2.34) 134
Lymphatic Leukaemia 1.55 (1.00-2.41) 107
Myeloid Leukaemia 1.73 (0.62-14.81) 9
Other Leukaemia 1.65 (0.33-8.19) 8
Total Leukaemia 2.32 (1.35-4.01) 59
Lymphatic Leukaemia 2.74 (1.42-5.27) 39
Myeloid Leukaemia 1.77 (0.47-6.69) 11
Other Leukaemia 1.45 (0.30-6.99) 9
The authors searched diligently for confounding factors, including social economic factors, air pollution (benzene), ionizing radiation, migration, hospitals, high voltage power lines and local industries. None affected the relationships found. They investigated the possibility of clustering and found that no significant heterogeneity was found (p=0.10 for incidence and p=0.13 for mortality).
At these individual sites, and for all the 20 sites combined, the adult leukaemia rate was found to be low near the tower, rose to form a broad variable peak between about 1 km and 5 km, and then declined with distance. Over all distance It didn't follow an inverse square law and therefore it failed to confirm the result found at Sutton Coldfield, Figure 16.
There are two types of radial transmission signals and two types of radial cancer patterns:
Type B: VHF signals have a peak within 1 km and decline
with distance in an undulating fashion, Figure 2.
The data in Dolk et al. is internally
consistent, shows elevated childhood leukaemia and brain tumor, and a set
of dose-response relationships which are likely to be highly significant,
if related to realistic radial RF patterns, for cancer at a wide range
of body sites including All Cancer, Leukaemia, Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma,
Brain Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Skin Melanoma, Male and
Female Breast Cancer and Colorectal Cancer. This is also consistent with
Robinette et al. (1980), Szmigielski (1996) and Milham (1985, 1988).
Sleep Disturbance near a Shortwave Radio Tower, Schwarzenburg, Switzerland:
The Schwarzenburg Study, Alpeter et al. (1995) and Abelin (1999) showed a causal relationship of sleep disturbance with exposure to a short wave radio signal. The effect is assessed as causal because of the significant dose response relationship, the variation of sleep disturbance in two experiments, one involving changing the beams and one turning the transmitter off, and the identification of significant melatonin reduction. Professor Abelin told seminars in Christchurch that they had measured a significant increase in melatonin after the tower transmission was turned off permanently compared to the levels while it was on. Measurements of salival melatonin in two herds of 5 cows revealed a significant rise in melatonin in the exposed cows when the tower was turned off for three days, Figure 17.
Figure 17 also reveals that when the tower was turned on the "unexposed" herd showed a drop in melatonin. Under normal tower operation the exposed cows had a delay in their nocturnal peak by 2 to 3 hours.
When the tower was turned off the sleep quality improved significantly for the three groups being monitored at that time. Figure 18 shows the results for the highest and lowest exposed groups, Group A and Group C.
Thus turning the tower off revealed significant rises in bovine melatonin and human sleep quality. Human melatonin increased significantly when the tower was turned off permanently. Groups B, R and C are all exposed to a mean RF signal of less than 0.1m W/cm2 and they experienced highly significant sleep disturbance and reduced melatonin.
Broadcast Tower Conclusions:
The Swiss researchers in the Schwarzenburg Study concluded that there was a causal relationship with sleep disruption and exposure to RF radiation. This shows the exquisite sensitivity of the brain to RF radiation, reduction in a vital neurohormone, melatonin, which is related to sleep quality, chronic fatigue and cancer. The Schwarzenburg study also identified a suite of symptoms that they referred to as Chronic Fatigue. In the U.K., Australia, San Francisco, Hawaii and Italy residential studies above show significant increases in adult and childhood leukaemia and multiple significant dose response relationships for a range of cancers, especially leukaemia and brain tumour and all cancer at residential exposure levels.
This forms a coherent, consistent, integrated set
of studies showing a causal relationship between sleep disturbance, chronic
fatigue and cancer in association with extremely low mean RF exposure levels
experiences in residential situations in the vicinity of radio and TV transmission
Some suggest that these epidemiological studies should be rejected because they claim that there are no known biological mechanisms. This to wrong on two counts. Firstly, epidemiological evidence is the strongest evidence of human health effects and dose-response relationships are indicative of a causal effect, Hill (1965). Biological mechanisms are limited by current knowledge and therefore should not diminish the epidemiological conclusions. Secondly, there is a large and coherent body of evidence of biological mechanisms that support the conclusion of a plausible, logical and causal relationship between EMR exposure and cancer, cardiac, neurological and reproductive health effects.
König (1974) and Wever (1974) prove that ELF EMR interacts with and interferes with human brains at extremely low field intensities.
Calcium Ion Homeostasis:
Blackman (1990) concludes that there is overwhelming evidence that EMR alters cellular calcium ion homeostasis, down to 0.08m W/cm2, Schwartz et al. (1990).
Fourteen studies show that RF/MW causes significant chromosome damage, four with dose response relationships and one recorded a dose related cell death rate; Heller and Teixeira-Pinto (1959), Tonascia and Tonascia (1996) [cited in Goldsmith (1997b)], Sagripanti and Swicord (1986), Garaj-Vrhovac et al. (1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1998), Maes et al. (1993), Timchenko and Ianchevskaia (1995), Balode (1996), Haider et al. (1994), Vijayalaxmi et al. (1997), Tice, Hook and McRee (1999).
DNA strand breakage:
Four independent laboratories observe significant DNA damage, including two for cell phone radiation, down to 1 m W/cm2, Phillips et al. (1998). Lai and Singh (1995, 1996, 1997), Sarkar, Ali and Behari (1994), Verschave et al. (1994), including a dose response relationship, Lai and Singh (1996).
Neoplastic Transformation of Cells:
Balcer-Kubiczek and Harrison (1991) observed a significant dose response in cells exposed to microwaves.
Two laboratories show that cell phone radiation significantly alters proto oncogene activity; Ivaschuk et al. (1997) and Goswami et al. (1999).
Fourteen studies show that EMR across the spectrum from ELF to RF/MW reduces melatonin in people.
ELF exposure reduced melatonin in Wilson et al. (1990),
Graham et al. (1994), Wood et al. (1998), Karasek et al. (1998), and Burch
et al. (1997, 1998, 1999a), Juutilainen et al. (2000) and Graham et al.
(2000); Pfluger et al. (1996)[16.7 Hz] and geomagnetic activity, Burch
et al. (1999b).
Impairment of the immune system is related to calcium ion efflux, Walleczek (1992) and to reduced melatonin, Reiter and Robinson (1995). Cossarizza et al. (1993) showed that ELF fields increased both the spontaneous and PHA and TPA- induced production of interleukin-1 and IL-6 in human peripheral blood. Rats exposed to microwaves showed a significant reduction in splenic activity of natural killer (NK) cells, Nakamura et al. (1997).
Quan et al. (1992) showed that microwave heating of human breast milk highly significantly suppressed the specific immune system factors for E.Coli bacteria compared with conventional heating. Dmoch and Moszczynski (1998) found that microwave exposed workers had decreased NK cells and a lower value of the T-helper/T-suppressor ratio was found. Moszczynski et al. (1999) observed increased IgG and IgA and decreased lymphocytes and T8 cells in TV signal exposed workers.
Chronic, 25 year, exposure to an extremely low intensity (<0.1m W/cm2) 156-162 MHz, 24.4 Hz pulse frequency, radar signal in Latvia produced significant alterations in the immune system factors of exposed villagers, Bruvere et al. (1998).
Biological Mechanism Conclusions:
EMR is shown to alter cellular calcium ions, significantly increase chromosome aberrations, DNA strand breakage, neoplastic transformation of cells, reduce melatonin, enhance oncogene activity and impair the immune system. This is a coherent, consistent and overwhelming set of evidence to show that EMR is genotoxic.
When coupled with the epidemiological evidence of
cancer, there is compelling evidence that EMR is genotoxic, and hence is
carcinogenic and teratogenic.
Effects shown for electromagnetic radiation, especially radio and radar signals:
Such signals have been shown to:
Cell Phone Radiation Research:
For years the cell phone companies and government authorities have assured us that cell phone are perfectly safe. They state that the particular set of radiation parameter associated with cell phones are not the same as any other radio signal and therefore earlier research does not apply. They also mount biased review teams who falsely dismiss any results that indicate adverse biological and health effects and the flawed pre-assumption that the only possible effect is tissue heating. There is a very large body of scientific research that challenges this view. Now we have published research, primarily funded by governments and industry that shows that cell phone radiation causes the following effects:
There is overwhelming evidence that cell sites are likely to cause a wide range of serious adverse health effects. Carefully designed health surveys are need to disprove or confirm this claim. Careful survey design includes consideration of exposure levels and patterns, as well as consideration of indoor and outdoor exposure levels that contribute differently to mean exposure levels.
Cell site antennas focus most of the radiation into the main beam in the horizontal and vertical directions. The vertical antenna pattern includes two or three main side-lobes that produce the near tower ground level radiation exposures, Figures 26 to 28.
Figure 26: Cell site profile showing the extent of
the main beans and side lobes in which the 200 m
W/cm2 standard is exceeded. This illustrates the directions
of the beams and side lobes.
To over 40 studies have shown adverse biological or human health effects specifically from cell phone radiation. These research results to date clearly show that cell phones and cell phone radiation are a strong risk factor for all of the adverse health effects identified for EMR because they share the same biological mechanisms. The greatest risk is to cell phone users because of the high exposure to their heads and the great sensitivity of brain tissue and brain processes. DNA damage accelerates cell death in the brain, advancing neurodegenerative diseases and brain cancer. Brain tumour is already an identified risk factor. Cell phones are carried on people's belts and in breast pockets. Hence liver cancer, breast cancer and testicular cancer became probable risk factors.
Because the biological mechanisms for cell phone radiation mimics that of EMR, and the dose-response relationships have a threshold of ZERO, and this includes genetic damage, there is extremely strong evidence to conclude that cell sites are risk factors for:
A recommended risk reduction target for the mean chronic public exposure is 10 nW/cm2.
This is accomplished by setting the outside boundary exposure as 0.1m W/cm2.
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