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Radiofrequency Sickness and 'Smart Meters'
USA Created: 5 Apr 2010
The article below was just published in the National Council on Independent Living Weekly Advocacy Monitor on March 16, 2010. This went to all the local Centers for Independent Living or Independent Living Centers. Hopefully they should now all be prepared with at least a basic understanding. This should make them more ready and able to help you deal with your utility and your PUC or PSC as you seek to prevent placement of a transmitting utility meter or as you seek to get one removed for health reasons.

Do not be shy about seeking help from your local center. The more people they hear from, the more likely it is that the health problems the transmitting meters are causing will receive national attention. Please feel free to refer them to www.electricalpollution.com for more information. You are welcome to have them contact me with questions at webmaster@electricalpollution.com.

You can find your local center in the United States by going to http://www.ilru.org/html/publications/directory/index.html

There is a link there to international centers as well. I am not sure if they would have received the article as well as not. If you are outside the United States, you may need to bring it to their attention.

Please let others in need know of this new awareness and opportunity for assistance.


National Council on Independent Living
Weekly Advocacy Monitor

Volume 8, Issue 7

A New Advocacy Crisis: Radiofrequency Sickness
I was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome in my mid-twenties. Nearly ten years ago I discovered that it was really radiofrequency sickness. I have been very fortunate to have been able to control my environment and minimize my exposure to radiofrequency radiation. This has allowed me to recover and be well since then. My family and I have paid a steep price for our health. We have been forced to be successively more restricted and isolated as wireless technology and severe electrical pollution have become ubiquitous.

Now new public utility policy further threatens our health, functionality, and independence. The threat comes from our utility company’s refusal to accommodate our need for an environment low in radiofrequencies. They are insisting on replacing our existing rotating disk electrical meters, which must be read by a person, with transmitting electrical meters (so called “smart meters”) on our home and farm electrical services. These meters transmit in strong bursts of radiofrequency radiation. We have offered to read and report our own meters readings, but they refuse to allow that. Many people with radiofrequency sickness are being forced to have transmitting meters on water, gas, and electrical services.

I am writing this article to try to dispel the depth of ignorance I have encountered about radiofrequency sickness. I hope that you will continue reading so that you understand and are prepared for the others who call you for assistance. Due to the nature of the mental impairment radiofrequency sickness causes, it is often difficult for actively sick individuals to coherently communicate all the background information you will need in order to help them. Individuals are also often reluctant to reach out because of the wall of ignorance they usually encounter. Hopefully the following information will help you to better serve people with radiofrequency sickness. There will soon be many more, because soon there truly will be no place to hide.

Radiofrequency sickness results from overexposure to radiofrequency radiation. (See the Health Issues page at www.electricalpollution.com for a list of symptoms.) Radiofrequency sickness is not a disease. It is an environmentally induced functional impairment. Radiofrequency sickness has real and disabling consequences. People with radiofrequency sickness experience illness (or even death) upon exposure to radiofrequency radiation.(see footnotes 1,2,3,4) The most common sources are electrical pollution – high frequencies that travel on building wiring – and transmitters – all wireless devices.

The iron-clad rule in environmental medicine is that where there are cases of toxic exposures the source of the exposures must be removed.

The only “cure” for radiofrequency sickness is not to be exposed to radiofrequency radiation. People with radiofrequency sickness often become ill almost immediately upon exposure, although the severity of the illness depends on how often the exposure occurs, the frequency and amplitude of the radiation signal and the duration of the exposure. Studies show pulsed microwaves, as utilized by modern communication devices - including transmitting meters - are very potent biologically.(see footnotes 1,2,3,4)

In fact, data presented at the recent conference “Electromagnetic Radiation Impacts on Human Health" sponsored by The EMR Policy Institute showed that radiofrequencies, specifically pulsed modulated microwaves from a DECT cordless telephone base station can have an instantaneous effect on heart rhythm in susceptible individuals. This technology is the same as that used by cellphones, WiFi internet access, and transmitting meters.

The health effects associated with overexposure to radiofrequencies are so numerous and varied that you may already have clientele that could benefit from knowledge about radiofrequency sickness. Many individuals with MS symptoms have experienced a substantial reduction in symptoms when their electrical environments were cleaned up.(see footnote 5) I experienced multiple chemical sensitivities along with the symptoms that earned me the chronic fatigue syndrome diagnosis. It took time, but those sensitivities have almost completely cleared up. The cholinesterase enzyme is impaired by both radiofrequency radiation and organophosphate pesticides, reducing tolerable exposures for both pollutants.(see footnote 6) Exposure to radiofrequency radiation interferes with the action of enzymes, signaling pathways, and makes the immune system simultaneously hyperactive and less effective.(see footnotes 7,8)

Detrimental biological effects, distinct from tissue heating effects, have been extensively documented in studies at a range of different frequencies and at levels below the current United States safety standard.(see footnote 7)

Our current safety regulations are not designed to protect people from the non-thermal hazards posed by transmitting meters or other devices. The FCC “safety” standards are solely designed to protect a 6 ft 185 lb man from tissue heating during a short (6 minute) exposure. They are not designed to protect even a 6 ft man from biological effects during a continuous exposure.(see footnotes 9,10) Exposures from these meters are continuous, so these “safety” standards are meaningless. Transmitting devices compliant with current safety standards should not be allowed to portray themselves as “safe”. The fact that these transmitters are represented as being “safe” because they comply with FCC standards is part of the reason that people are being required to have transmitting utility meters. Additional studies are now available. The data warrant complying with the precautionary principle and establishing lower exposure standards for safe levels of exposure for chronic exposures to radio frequency radiation for the population as a whole.(see footnote 11)

Humans are electromagnetic beings. Our cells continuously communicate with each other through electrical micro currents. Wireless technology (i.e. cell phones, WiFi and WiMax wireless internet, radar, radio/television broadcast) transmits information through the use of electromagnetic radiation in the radiofrequency/microwave range. This ever-increasing background radiation has the ability to disrupt the communication between our body’s cells, resulting in abnormal functions in the developing cells of children, as well as adults and other living creatures.

While some people experience disability in the short term from exposure to transmitted radiofrequency and microwave radiation, there are long-term public health implications as well. Microwave and radiofrequency radiation are now being associated with attention deficit disorder, autism, sleep disorders, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and epilepsy, as well as asthma, diabetes, malignant melanoma, breast cancer, and other illnesses that have become increasingly more common. Please see www.bioinitiative.org to read a review of the peer-reviewed science on the long-term risks of exposure to transmitted microwave and radio frequency radiation. Studies finding no health effects are predominantly industry funded.(see footnote 12) Exposure is often involuntary. For instance, even out here in the country the meters on my neighbors’ homes are increasing my exposure. Sensitive people in town are in even more danger and are usually chronically ill, unable to recover. A report by Hallberg and Johansson(see footnote 13) published recently in Pathophysiology asks the provocative question about whether the recent (1997 and later) increase in exposure to microwave frequencies may be responsible for the recent decline in public health in Sweden. The data seem to say that public exposure to microwave frequencies is a likely culprit.

Transmitting meters can also overexpose the general population to high frequencies by putting high frequencies on home and building wiring, either deliberately through signaling or inadvertently through poor engineering. High frequency signals on power lines also cause illness. Milham and Morgan found a dose-response relationship between high frequencies present on building wiring and cancer.(see footnote 14) Recent analysis of historical epidemiological data indicates a relationship to cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and suicide.(see footnote 15) Removing high frequencies on building wiring has improved MS symptoms, blood sugar levels, asthma, sleep quality, teacher health, student attentiveness, headaches, ADD, and numerous other health problems.(see footnotes 5,16,17) Technical papers provide a solid electrical and biomolecular basis for these effects. A recent paper by Ozen showed that transients induce much stronger current density levels in the human body than does the powerline 60Hz signal.(see footnote 18) A technical paper by Vignati and Giuliani discusses the authors’ findings that high frequency communication signals on power lines also induce much stronger electrical currents in the human body than a low frequency signal of the same strength.(footnote 19) The induced currents disturb normal intercellular communications. This causes harmful short-term and long-term effects. Additional information can be found onwww.electricalpollution.com. Information necessary to properly measure the high frequencies causing these health problems can be found on the Technical page. A simple meter is also available that can provide accurate measurements of electrical pollution levels in most situations.

The precautionary principle dictates that only “smart meters” that do not increase public exposure to microwave and radiowave radiation or “dirty” power should be used while conservative standards to protect the health of the general population during continuous exposure are researched and established. Safe technology is available that can be used to perform the same functions as transmitting “smart meters”. There are non-transmitting meters that can do variable rates and meter both incoming and outgoing power. Meters can easily be engineered that do not put high frequencies on electrical wiring either inadvertantly or deliberately, while still performing all necessary functions. Directly wired connections could be used to shut off key loads. Alternate technologies may cost a bit more up front, but the precautionary principle should apply.

I hope that you will strive to help those with radiofrequency sickness to create or keep a safe environment through individual and local advocacy. It is virtually impossible for an individual to do so alone when the aggressor is the utility. Often people may be too sick to help themselves by the time they call you. The Solutions page atwww.electricalpollution.com has a list of steps to take to create a safe environment for people with radiofrequency sickness.

An outline of the national threat we face is available at : www.electricalpollution/documents/public_health_threat_sum.pdf

Video from The EMR Policy Institute Conference “Electromagnetic Radiation Impacts on Human Health" can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/user/EMRPolicyInstitute

Please see www.electricalpollution.com or www.emrpolicy.org for more information.


1) Johnson Liakouris AG. Radiofrequency (RF) sickness in the Lilienfeld study: An effect of modulated microwaves Archives of Environmental Health; May/Jun 1998; 53, 3.

2) Santini R, Santini P, Le Ruz P, Danze JM, and Seignel M. Survey Study of People Living in the Vicinity of Cellular Fhone Base Stations. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine Vol. 22, No. 1, pp. 4149, 2003

3) Hyland GJ. Physics and biology of mobile telephony. The Lancet, Vol 356, November 25, 2000.

4) Marha K, Musil J, and Tuha H. Electromagnetic Fields and the Life Environment. Institute of Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Diseases, Prague, Czechoslovakia. English Translation 1971

5) Havas M. 2006. Electromagnetic hypersensitivity: biological effects of dirty electricity with emphasis on diabetes and multiple sclerosis. Electromagnetic Biology Medicine 25(4):259-68.

6) Grant L. Microwaves Imitate Pesticides. U.S. Department of Energy Risk Management Quarterly, Volume 5-3. http://www.stralingsvrijkind.nl/documenten/Bijlage-MicrowavesPesticides.pdf

7) Cherry, N. 2000 Criticism of the Health Assessment in the ICNIRP Guidelines for Radiofrequency and Microwave Radiation (100 kHz- 300 GHz)

8) Johansso O. Disturbance of the immune system by electromagnetic fields—A potentially underlying cause for cellular damage and tissue repair reduction which could lead to disease and impairment, Pathophysiology, Volume 16, Issues 2-3, August 2009, Pages 157-177

9) Letter from Norbert Hankin, Center for Science and Risk Assessment, Radiation Protection Division, EPA, regarding the limitations and purpose of the FCC exposure standards.http://www.emrpolicy.org/litigation/case_law/docs/noi_epa_response.pdf

10) Identification of Research Needs Relating to Potential Biological or Adverse Health Effects of Wireless Communication, 2008, National Academy of Science. http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=12036#toc

11) Sage C, Carpenter DO. 2009. Public health implications of wireless technologies, Pathophysiology Aug;16(2-3):233-46

12) Huss et al., "Source of Funding and Results of Studies of Health Effects of Mobile Phone Use: Systematic Review of Experimental Studies", Environmental Health Perspectives, 115(1): 1-4, 2007.http://www.ehponline.org/members/2006/9149/9149.pdf.

13) Hallberg O, Johansson O, Apparent decreases in Swedish public health indicators after 1997 – Are they due to improved diagnostics or to environmental factors? Pathophysiology Volume 16, Issue 1, June 2009, Pages 43-46.

14) Milham S, Morgan L. A new electromagnetic exposure metric: High frequency voltage transients associated with increased cancer incidence in teachers in a California school, American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Volume 51, Issue 8, Date: August 2008, Pages: 579-586

15) Milham S. Historical evidence that electrification caused the 20th century epidemic of “diseases of civilization”. Medical Hypotheses DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2009.08.032

16) Havas M, Olstad A. Power quality affects teacher wellbeing and student behavior in three Minnesota Schools, Science of the Total Environment, Volume 402, Issues 2-3, 1 September 2008, pp. 157-162.

17) Havas M. 2008. Dirty Electricity Elevates Blood Sugar Among Electrically Sensitive Diabetics and May Explain Brittle Diabetes. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 27:135-146.http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~db=all?content=10.1080/15368370802072075

18) Ozen, S. 2007. Low-frequency Transient Electric and Magnetic Fields Coupling to Child Body, Radiation Protection Dosimetry (2007), pp. 1–6. http://rpd.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/ncm315

19) Vignati, M. and L. Giuliani, 1997. Radiofrequency exposure near high-voltage lines. Environ Health Perspect 105(Suppl 6):1569-1573 (1997) http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1469914

Catherine Kleiber

Smart Meter Advice from Linda Sepp

As an aside maybe worth pursuing for some people, I use a digital camera to photograph my old hydro meter and email it in every month - the meters have the serial number in the photo to verify it's the right meter and therefore a chemical laden meter reader never has to enter the house and I've managed to hang on to the old meter.

Click here to view the source article.
Source: Catherine Gamba

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