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|Government rejects calls for mobile phone mast overhaul|
|United Kingdom||Created: 27 Nov 2021|
Campaigners have warned that community groups which rent land to mobile phone giants have seen income collapse due to Government rule changes.
Community groups across the country are set to miss out on millions of pounds in rent payments from telecoms giants for phone masts on their land after the Government rejected calls for a rule change.
Visitor centres, churches and schools had been urging ministers to overturn controversial rules that led to a recalculation of rental values, leaving them around £1 billion out of pocket since 2017.
The Digital Economy Act saw rents reduced by 90% for organisations and landowners that host masts and telecoms infrastructure.
A consultation was opened by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, to look at changing the rules but the Government has now rejected them, instead offering a new complaints process.
Campaigners reacted with fury at the decision and warned that charities and organisations could suffer.
In 2017, the Government changed the valuation methodology, which has resulted in mobile phone companies demanding rent reductions of up to 90%.
It has hit thousands of small businesses and individuals at a time when many are already facing financial hardship.
Research carried out by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) found that the sports and social clubs, farmers, churches, charities and small businesses which provide telecommunications sites across the UK have collectively lost £209 million in rent each year since the change.
Campaigners say the Government should have used the proposed legislation to undertake a thorough review of the valuation system in order to assess the impact of the 2017 amendment.
Instead, it is proposing a complex complaints process intended to manage negotiations between landowner and mobile phone operator.
Chairwoman of the Protect and Connect campaign Anna Turley said: “The Government has been completely tin-eared in this consultation.
“Thousands of people responded to highlight the problem of land valuation.
“The vast majority explained what it is like to host a mobile phone mast and have your rent slashed and rights over your land or property handed over to telecoms giants.
“The Government has ridden rough-shod over their views and given in to the demands of these companies, who are making huge profits at the expense of charities, sports clubs, councils and farmers.”
One of the affected groups, nature charity Highfield Park Visitor Centre in St Albans, Hertfordshire, said its rental income from masts has fallen from £10,000 a year to just £200.
Park manager Richard Bull said: “I can’t believe the Government is allowing this to happen. We saw our £10,000 annual rent cut to just £200, which has had a devastating impact on our charity.
“We wanted them to take their mast away – but of course they won’t; instead they’re adding more and more infrastructure and we can’t do anything about it.
“It is very disappointing that the Government places business needs above everything else.”
Ed Bailey, who runs a family hill farm in Gwynedd, North Wales has also been badly affected.
He originally agreed a rent of £5,500 a year early in 2017 with a network operator to have a telecoms mast on his land.
But, months later, after telecoms companies were granted extra powers, the rent offer was reduced to just £3.50 a year.
Mr Bailey said: “Negotiations were very stressful. I felt we were taken advantage of as a family.
“I can’t believe the Government is allowing this to happen to more people up and down the country, and I can’t help but think that all of this will slow down digital connectivity because who is going to want a mast on their land now?”
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: Evening Standard, Simon Neville, 25 Nov 2021|
|65ft phone mast will be built by homes in Wakefield because 'government doesn't have a clue'|
|United Kingdom||Created: 24 Nov 2021|
The government has insisted on a 5G mast being built on a busy road in Wakefield, just months after the local council rejected such plans.
Campaigners thought they’d successfully seen off a proposal to build a 20 metre (65 foot) mast on Dewsbury Road in Lupset.
Planning officers at Wakefield Council said the structure would be an eyesore “at odds” with the surrounding area when they turned the plans down in June.
Click here for more news and updates from Wakefield
But government officials, who looked at the case after the developers appealed, have disagreed with that assessment and overturned the decision.
In their findings, the Planning Inspectorate described the mast as “essential” and said the need for “an electronic communications system should not be questioned”.
The mast will be 15 metres – five shorter than originally proposed – and be placed near the small Sainsbury’s store in the area.
But Wakefield West councillor Michael Graham, one of 86 people to object to the original application, said he was deeply unhappy with the result.
He said: “It makes you think, what is the point of the planning process here if the decision is just going to get overturned?
“Clearly they (the government) think local people don’t have a clue about their own communities.
“I know the people living directly facing where it’s going to be aren’t happy about it and I just don’t think it’s the right place.
“With all the street furniture that comes with it it’s going to be so prominent.”
In their report, the Planning Inspectorate said the mast will “not unacceptably harm the character and appearance” of the area.
They cited street furniture such as speed cameras, street lights and bus stops already on Dewsbury Road as evidence it will not be overly intrusive.
Dismissing concerns that people’s house prices may be affected by the move, the report said: “The planning system does not exist to protect private interests such as value of land or property.”
Councillor Graham said he disagreed with the findings and added: “I know some people are happy with the extra signal it will bring, but for me, on balance I don’t think the inconvenience of having this there is worth it.
“I think they could have found somewhere else for it.”
A number of objectors had cited health concerns in relation to 5G, many of which have no scientific basis in fact and have been peddled by Covid conspiracy theorists.
The council said these played no part in its decision to reject the proposal, as it was not in its remit to decide on “health safeguards”.
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: Yorkshire Live, David Spereall, 16 Nov 2021|
|Medical and tech experts warn against gifting smartphones and wi-fi enabled toys to children|
|USA||Created: 24 Nov 2021|
This holiday season, “Choose safe toys for your children, not wi-fi connected toys or smartphones,” is the message the Environmental Health Trust is sharing after recently winning a victory in the US. Court of Appeals of the District of Columbia Circuit. The court ordered the Federal Communications Commission to explain why it ignored scientific evidence showing harm from wireless radiation. Included in the evidence that the FCC ignored, are studies on the impact of wireless exposure to children.
Because children’s skulls are thinner and their brains and bodies contain more fluid, they will absorb more cell phone microwave radiation. The American Academy of Pediatrics has made recommendations that parents should limit cell phone use by children, keep the phone away from the head and instead of streaming wirelessly, pre-download games and videos so children can use the technology more safely in airplane mode.
Studies at National Institutes of Health National Toxicology Program found cell phone radiation led to cancers in the hearts and brains of male rats. DNA damage was also found. In 2021, a study by the Environmental Working Group published in Environmental Health, analyzed the NIH NTP study and concluded that U.S. safety limits needed to be 200 to 400 times stronger to protect children. A Yale Medicine study found that mice prenatally exposed to cell phone radiation had increased hyperactivity and impaired memory.
“Cell phones were never pre-market tested for long-term safety,” said Devra Davis, Ph.D., president of the Environmental Health Trust, a scientific think tank that promotes healthier environment through research, education and policy. “Safety limits for radiation were set 25 years ago, based on 35-year-old science and using a model of a large, adult male. Over a dozen countries inform parents to limit their children’s exposure because they are more vulnerable and will have a lifetime of exposure,” Davis explained. “Parents assume they’re buying devices and toys that have been deemed safe but no U.S. health agency has ever completed a systematic evaluation of the health risks of wireless radiation.”
While all cell phones have fine print warnings about keeping a distance between the phone and the body, the instructions are easy to miss. For instance, the Apple iPhone 13 should not be closer than 5 mm. The Amazon Echo has a distance of 20 cm, or about 8 inches. Laptops and many wi-fi toys advise keeping an “8-inch distance” from the body. When cellphones and wi-fi devices are held close to the body, the wireless radiation absorption can exceed U.S. safety limits that were set for adults more than two decades ago.
Here are EHT’s recommendations for parents this holiday season to keep kids safe:
Gift toys, dolls and games without cellular and wireless connection.
Hold off on getting your child a smartphone.
Choose a regular watch— wi-fi free instead of a smartwatch.
Ensure cameras have a setting to turn the wi-fi antenna off.
Teach children to set devices onto airplane mode so wireless antenna are OFF.
Avoid drones as gifts.
Set up laptops, tablets and computers on a desk and do not let the child use them on his/her lap.
Connect devices with ethernet rather than wi-fi.
Because smartphones, smart toys and other smart home devices have become ubiquitous in our daily lives, we rarely think about how this technology works. But it’s not holiday magic—it’s wireless microwave radiation. All wireless devices from smartphones to wi-fi and connected dolls and stuffed animals, are two-way microwave radios that send and receive a type of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation called radio frequency or RF radiation or microwaves.
Many physicians are cautioning about how this daily exposure will affect children’s health in the long term. Before buying your child a wi-fi toy or a cell phone this holiday, be sure to learn the facts. EHT has resources for parents on how to reduce exposure at home.
Environmental Health Trust
Founded in 2007, Environmental Health Trust, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is a think tank that promotes a healthier environment through research, education and policy. EHT conducts cutting edge research on environmental health hazards and works with communities, health, education professionals and policymakers to understand and mitigate these hazards. Currently, EHT works with scientists, policymakers, teachers, parents and students to promote awareness on how to practice safe technology. EHT was created to promote health and preventing disease one person, one community and one nation at a time. For more information on Environmental Health Trust, visit www.ehtrust.org.
Devra Lee Davis, Ph.D. MPH
Founder and President of Environmental Health Trust, also was the founding director of the Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology of the U.S. National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences. Among the NAS reports she directed were those advising that tobacco smoke be removed from airplanes and the environments of young children.
Exclusive content from CARE magazine
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: The Island News, 17 Nov 2021|
|Telecom behemoths slash phone mast rent by 90%, sparking outrage|
|United Kingdom||Created: 23 Nov 2021|
SMALL landowners who host phone masts are demanding a fair deal from telecom behemoths, who are threatening to slash rents by up to 90%.
A change in the law has resulted in a massive drop in income for sports clubs, farmers, charities, churches, hospitals, and community groups all over the country.
Telecom companies have taken advantage of rights granted to them under the 2017 Electronic Communications Code to reduce funding at a time when many community organizations are already struggling.
Some operators have been accused of employing aggressive tactics, including bullying, to compel landlords to accept the new terms or face legal action.
Anna Turley, a former Labour MP, is the chair of the Protect and Connect campaign, which is calling for a thorough review of the 2017 code’s impact.
Since its inception earlier this year, the organization has gathered the support of over 1,000 website owners.
“These large corporations, who make massive profits every year, have been given the power to essentially slash these rents,” Ms Turley explained.
“There’s actually a principle here, which is that there’s a real imbalance of power, aside from the financial cut and the impact on their ability to run their services or continue the sports facilities.”
“Through this code, the government gave these companies complete control in 2017, allowing them to pay whatever they want.”
“That’s a very unequal power balance.”
That isn’t a debate or a market negotiation; it is simply handing over complete control to the major corporations.”
There is also growing concern that the rent cuts will stymie the rollout of 5G across the country, with many small landowners threatening to demolish masts.
Protect and Connect claims that the mobile operators’ alleged aggressive behavior has already slowed the adoption of faster mobile connectivity, causing £2 billion in annual productivity losses.
The campaigners are concerned that the new Product Security and Telecoms Infrastructure Bill, which is expected to be passed before Christmas, will force sites to continue hosting masts despite rent reductions.
Kathryn Bradshaw is outraged, calling it a “complete and utter disgrace” that community facilities will lose thousands of pounds in rent as a result of hosting masts.
Kathryn, 70, is the secretary of Fox Lane Sports and Social Club, which pays £7,800 per year for an EE mast.
This was predicted to drop to £780 two years ago.
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: Brinkwire, Helena Sutan, 23 Nov 2021|
|Calling all payphone users: thousands of call boxes set for protection|
|United Kingdom||Created: 10 Nov 2021|
Thousands of vital phone boxes around the UK will be protected from closure, under Ofcom plans announced today.
With 96% of UK adults now owning a mobile phone, and mobile signal improving significantly in recent years, the way people make calls is changing.
As part of the move to digital phone lines, which will require investment to upgrade phone boxes, BT is currently assessing which ones are no longer needed and can be decommissioned. But under the current process for removing payphones, some that are needed by local communities risk being withdrawn.
So Ofcom is proposing clearer, stronger rules to safeguard a phone box against removal, if any of four criteria applies:
its location is not already covered by all four mobile networks; or
it is located at an accident or suicide hotspot; or
more than 52 calls have been made from it over the past 12 months; or
exceptional circumstances mean there is a need for a public call box.
We estimate that around 5,000 phone boxes around the UK would be protected from removal by the new rules. BT and KCOM can propose to remove phone boxes that do not fall within this strict criteria, but would need to formally consult with local communities before any action is taken.
Some of the call boxes we plan to protect are used to make relatively low numbers of calls. But if one of those calls is from a distressed child, an accident victim or someone contemplating suicide, that public phone line can be a lifeline at a time of great need.
We also want to make sure that people without mobile coverage, often in rural areas, can still make calls. At the same time, we’re planning to support the rollout of new phone boxes with free Wi-Fi and charging.
Selina Chadha, Ofcom’s Director of Connectivity
Under our plans, BT and KCOM – which operates Hull’s unique white phone boxes – must also install batteries in some payphones, so they can still be used during a power cut.
Who still uses payphones?
There are currently around 21,000 call boxes across the country. For people without a mobile, or for those in areas with poor mobile coverage, these can be a lifeline for making calls to friends and family, helpline services and accessing emergency services.
Almost 150,000 calls were made to emergency services from phone boxes in the year to May 2020, while 25,000 calls were made to Childline and 20,000 to Samaritans.
At the same time, the services people need from public call boxes are changing. Call volumes from payphones have fallen from around 800m minutes in 2002 to just 7m in 2020. A new generation of street hubs being rolled out by BT offer services such as free Wi-Fi and free charging.
So we are also proposing to allow BT and KCOM greater flexibility in the range of services they can provide in their phone boxes, to keep pace with people’s needs.
BT and KCOM provide around 21000 public call boxes across the U K. 5 million calls were made from them last year, 150000 were emergencies, 25000 were to childline and 20k to samaritans. Calls have decreased from 800m minutes in 2002 to 7 million in 2020. Since BT launched its adopt a kiosk scheme over 6000 kiosks have been converted into defibrillators and libraries.
Notes to editors
Exceptional circumstances: This category could include issues relevant to the geographic location of the phone box (for instance, a coastal location where mobile reception is less resilient); as well as the types of calls made from the phone, such as to helpline numbers.
For several years, BT has been decommissioning payphones that it has assessed are no longer needed. However, local authorities who want to retain the iconic red kiosk can use BT’s ‘Adopt a Kiosk’ scheme. Under the scheme, local bodies can purchase a red kiosk for £1 and use it for something else. Since BT launched the scheme, more than 6,000 kiosks have been converted to a range of different uses, such as community libraries, or to house life-saving public defibrillators.
We are also consulting on removing the requirement to provide a fax service.
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: OFCOM, 09 Nov 2021|
|BREAKING! Fishersgate mast in Brighton, quashed at Judicial Review|
|United Kingdom||Created: 7 Nov 2021|
Finally, we now have the recognition that Local Planning Authorities need to address the health impacts of 5G mast proposals further, rather than blindly accepting an ICNIRP certificate. Thank you to all those of you who donated, without your donations this could not have happened.
Siting and Appearance, are still ‘material planning considerations’ under Prior Approval. As such, NPPF policy para 118 must still be treated, along with other policies, by weighing evidence of ‘compatible and incompatible use’. A self declared ICNIRP certificate is just one factor, and not sufficient on its own. This may not be the technical reason for the judgement, but is an important area to keep pressing. Para 185 contradicts 118. Councils COULD be helping us, there are enough considerations to refuse masts as pollutants.
Brighton Council conceded on all 3 grounds in the Judicial Review Challenge including:
“the Council failed to address the health impacts of this particular proposal and to obtain adequate evidence of the assessment of the proximity to the school and the amended proposal”
The High Court of Justice issued the Consent Order today and Brighton Council have to pay the costs. A massive thank you goes to Karen Churchill, Carol Springay and her partner Spencer who put a lot of time and effort into this along with Carole Ward and Councillor Les Hamilton.
You will notice the ground says “for this particular proposal”. The mast was 27m from a school and no exclusion zones were provided (normally up to 50m). If you have an equivalent situation or a mast very close to homes with children then the parallel with the case could be argued tightly. But you could also use the precedent to argue that health affects within 500m should be addressed.
Keep it simple with just one or 2 references. The planners and councillors do say they are not scientists and can be overwhelmed by “science”. The latest Spanish paper (LOPEZ et al 2021) could work well. also the JD Pearce paper:
What is the radiation before 5G? A correlation study between measurements in situ and in real time and epidemiological indicators in Vallecas, Madrid
Lopez https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33434609/ shows headaches and sleep disturbances.
Limiting liability with positioning to minimize negative health effects of cellular phone towers
JD PEARCE paper states “There is a large and growing body of evidence that human exposure to RFR from cellular phone base stations causes negative health effects, including both i) neuropsychiatric complaints such as headache, concentration difficulties, memory changes, dizziness, tremors, depressive symptoms, fatigue and sleep disturbance, and ii) increased incidence of cancer and living in proximity to a cell-phone transmitter station.
Councils need to know that they could face a Judicial Review if they don’t address the information and evidence you present them. Keep asking them where the exclusion zones fall and don’t accept any decision where you suspect there is a residence within the zone. If health impacts need to be assessed by a school then by deduction one could argue that equally children need to be protected at home and information you present about health impacts should be addressed. If there are homes very close to the mast which house children, you could point this out and then link to the Brighton precedent. (ref planning app no. BH2021/016)
Link to ruling, here: https://rfinfo.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Consent-Order-02.11.21.pdf
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: RF INFO, 04 Nov 2021|
|5G – EESC urges Commission to further assess impact on human health and the environment|
|Belgium||Created: 5 Nov 2021|
The October plenary of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) adopted an opinion recognising the value of electronic communications infrastructure while highlighting the potential risks.
The European Commission should move forward in the process of assessing the multi-sectoral impact of new 5G and 6G technologies. Tools and measures are needed to address risks and vulnerabilities. In the opinion drafted by Dumitru Fornea and adopted by the assembly in the October plenary session, the EESC takes a firm stand, and notes that social, health and environmental issues need to be examined, involving citizens and all relevant actors, in spite of the fact that the debate on the deployment of 5G networks has turned into a controversial, political discussion.
Speaking on the sidelines of the plenary, Mr Fornea said: "Rapid digitisation and development of electronic communications has a strong impact on the economy and society at large. Through the responsible use of these technologies, humanity has a historic chance to build a better society. Nevertheless, without due diligence and democratic control, our communities might face serious challenges in the administration of these technological systems in the future."
The pandemic has shown that electronic communications infrastructure plays an important role in society and can greatly improve citizens' quality of life, with a direct impact on fighting poverty. For example, 5G technology presents an enormous opportunity to improve human health services through the development of telemedicine and by improving access to medical care.
However, potential danger needs to be continuously assessed. For this reason, the EESC recommends allocating European and national funds to more in-depth multidisciplinary research and impact studies focused on both humans and the environment, and to disseminating these results in order to educate the public and decision-makers.
In addition, the Committee proposes that the European Commission consults citizens and civil society organisations and, through the involvement of all relevant public institutions, feeds into the decision-making process with respect to the societal and ecological impact of mobile electronic communications.
In the EESC's view, the EU needs an independent European body with up-to-date methodologies, in line with the current technological context and adopting a multidisciplinary approach, in order to establish guidelines for the protection of the general public and workers in the event of exposure to radio frequency electromagnetic radiation.
All radio frequency transmission stations and the frequency bands on which they operate should be inventoried and this information published for better territorial management and the protection of citizens' interests, particularly those of vulnerable groups, such as children, pregnant women, chronically ill persons, the elderly and electro-hypersensitive people.
Electromagnetic pollution should be monitored on the basis of a rigorous interinstitutional and interdisciplinary scientific approach, supported by modern measuring equipment that properly highlights and evaluates the cumulative effects over longer periods of time. Although there is no recognised scientific data showing a negative impact of 5G on human health, there should be constant monitoring of social, health and environmental aspects, in line with the precautionary principle.
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: European Economic and Social Committee, 10 Oct 2021|
|Health Council of the Netherlands and evaluation of the fifth generation, 5G, for wireless communication and cancer risks|
|Sweden||Created: 23 Oct 2021|
Currently the fifth generation, 5G, for wireless communication is about to be rolled out worldwide. Many persons are concerned about potential health risks from radiofrequency radiation. In September 2017, a letter was sent to the European Union asking for a moratorium on the deployment until scientific evaluation has been made on potential health risks (http://www.5Gappeal.eu). This appeal has had little success. The Health Council of the Netherlands released on September 2, 2020 their evaluation on 5G and health. It was largely based on a World Health Organization draft and report by the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority, both criticized for not being impartial. The guidelines by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection were recommended to be used, although they have been considered to be insufficient to protect against health hazards (http://www.emfscientist.org). The Health Council Committee recommended not to use the 26 GHz frequency band until health risks have been studied. For lower frequencies, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection guidelines were recommended. The conclusion that there is no reason to stop the use of lower frequencies for 5G is not justified by current evidence on cancer risks as commented in this article. A moratorium is urgently needed on the implementation of 5G for wireless communication.
Key Words: 5G, Cancer risk, Health Council Netherlands
Core Tip: In this comment, guidelines for radiofrequency radiation are discussed in relation to a recent evaluation by the Health Council of the Netherlands. The Committee recommends that for the deployment of 5G the frequency band 26 GHz should not be used. For lower frequencies, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection guidelines are recommended. However, these guidelines are not based on an objective evaluation of health risks, which is discussed in this paper.
Hardell L. Health Council of the Netherlands and evaluation of the fifth generation, 5G, for wireless communication and cancer risks. World J Clin Oncol 2021; 12(6): 393-403 [PMID: 34189065 DOI: 10.5306/wjco.v12.i6.393]
*SNIP* read the entire paper via the source link below...
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: World Journal of Clinical Oncology, Lennart Hardell, Jun 24 2021|
|Satellite Internet-of-Things dreams are crashing into reality|
|USA||Created: 23 Oct 2021|
Several IoT startups that have built business plans around combined terrestrial and satellite networks have given up on the satellite portion of their dreams. Most recently, Hiber, a European satellite IoT provider, said this week that it will partner with Inmarsat’s new Elera network for the space-based portion of its network, using LoRaWAN for the rest.
Last month, Hiber filed with the FCC to drop plans to launch its own constellation. Meanwhile, Myriota, another startup, has partnered with a company called Spire rather than launch its own birds. We also saw Swarm agree to be acquired by SpaceX after proving out its business model and launching 120 small sats.
What on earth is going on with this space? I reached out to Tim Farrar, an analyst who covers the satellite industry, for his insights. Y’all may remember Farrar, who is the president of TMF Associates, from a bearish interview he gave on the podcast back in August 2019, when he warned that the economics of providing low-cost connectivity for IoT devices and the costs of operating a satellite network were out of whack.
Indeed, that’s what’s driving companies such as Myriota and Hiber to change their plans, and is what’s behind the acquisition of Swarm. Even with smaller satellites, building a profitable wireless network is hard. On one side, there’s a capital-intensive phase that requires establishing connectivity (in this case, by building and launching satellites) and on the other, these companies must establish a market for the connectivity.
But while the economics of building and launching satellites have changed dramatically, the demand for devices that rely on satellite networks hasn’t kept up. The biggest growth has come from people-tracking products, such as the Garmin inReach walkie-talkies, which people can wear into the wilderness and use to get help if needed. There are also rumors that Apple may include some form of satellite service in an upcoming iPhone.
While this is a real and growing market, however, it isn’t enough to justify the launch of constellations by almost a dozen companies whose goal is to be IoT connectivity providers. So former connectivity players eschew bandwidth and turn to full solutions in order to provide a service that isn’t a commodity and eke out more revenue per customer.
This is the goal Hiber is working toward by providing the sensors and software that can be used to monitor pressure, location, temperature, and even vibration. In that situation, connectivity is just infrastructure as opposed to a competitive advantage, which is why we see the company turning to Inmarsat for service. Farrar noted to me that several companies are making this pivot, and wondered how well they will do.
As he put it: “The issue is, again, if you started your company with satellite techs to make small sats and launch them, then pivoting to analytics and solutions is all very well, but are you going to win against someone who has expertise in that area?”
Another challenge for companies that are using small satellites is that they tend to degrade faster. That means a company that wants to build a viable business selling connectivity has only a year or two to get the satellites (and network) operational, with lots of coverage, and then find customers who will help fund the next capital injection required for the launch of new satellites. Whereas when the satellite companies built giant birds in the 90s, they were able to sit there for a few years (sometimes those companies filed for bankruptcy) before demand picked up to the point where there’d be enough revenue to sustain a continual refresh of the constellation.
According to Farrar, an unwillingness to fight through this cycle without a clear plan for a large customer base is what prompted Swarm to sell to SpaceX. Such an unwillingness is also what helps drive satellite startups such as Myriota and Hiber to look to larger, more well-funded players for the network.
Companies such as Spire, which is publicly traded; BlackSky, which went public last month via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC); and Planet Labs, which will raise more than $500 million via a SPAC; are the beneficiaries of this decision-making. As an aside, Spire is a good example of a company trying to offer analytics in addition to connectivity.
There’s clearly a lot of money and investor interest in funding satellite connectivity, especially for the IoT. While we’re only a few years into the wave of startups built on the premise of everything needing to be connected, some winners are emerging. And those companies are banking on more than simple connections. They need an analytics story and cash — a lot of cash.
|Click here to view the source article.|
|Source: Stacey on IoT, Stacey Higginbotham, 19 Oct 2021|
|THE MOST DANGEROUS TECHNOLOGY EVER INVENTED, part 1.|
|USA||Created: 20 Oct 2021|
In 1995, the telecommunications industry was preparing to introduce a dangerous new product to the United States: the digital cell phone. Existing cell phones were analog and expensive, owned mostly by the wealthy, used for only a few minutes at a time. Many were car phones whose antennas were outside the car, not held in one’s hand and not next to one’s brain. Cell phones worked only in or near large cities. The few cell towers that existed were mostly on hilltops, mountaintops, or skyscrapers, not close to where people lived.
The problem for the telecommunications industry in 1995 was liability. Microwave radiation was harmful. Cell phones were going to damage everyone’s brain, make people obese, and give millions of people cancer, heart disease and diabetes. And cell towers were going to damage forests, wipe out insects, and torture and kill birds and wildlife.
This was all known. Extensive research had already been done in the United States, Canada, the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, and elsewhere. Biologist Allan Frey, under contract with the U.S. Navy, was so alarmed by the results of his animal studies that he refused to experiment on humans. “I have seen too much,” he told colleagues at a symposium in 1969. “I very carefully avoid exposure myself, and I have for quite some time now. I do not feel that I can take people into these fields and expose them and in all honesty indicate to them that they are going into something safe.”
Frey discovered that microwave radiation damages the blood-brain barrier -- the protective barrier that keeps bacteria, viruses and toxic chemicals out of your brain and keeps the inside of your head at a constant pressure, preventing you from having a stroke. He discovered that both people and animals can hear microwaves. He discovered that he could stop a frog’s heart by timing microwave pulses at a precise point in the heart’s rhythm. The power level he used for that experiment was only 0.6 microwatts per square centimeter, thousands of times lower than the radiation from today’s cell phones.
Ophthalmologist Milton Zaret, who had contracts with the U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force, as well as with the Central Intelligence Agency, discovered in the 1960s that low-level microwave radiation causes cataracts. In 1973, he testified before the Commerce Committee of the United States Senate. “There is a clear, present and ever-increasing danger,” he told the senators, “to the entire population of our country from exposure to the entire non-ionizing portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. The dangers cannot be overstated…” Zaret told the committee about patients who not only had cataracts caused by exposure to microwaves, but also malignant tumors, cardiovascular disease, hormonal imbalance, arthritis and mental illness, as well as neurological problems in children born to them. These patients ranged from military personnel exposed to radar to housewives exposed to their microwave ovens.
“The microwave oven leakage standard set by the Bureau of Radiological Health,” he told the committee, “is approximately 1 billion times higher than the total entire microwave spectrum given off by the Sun. It is appalling for these ovens to be permitted to leak at all, let alone for the oven advertisements to encourage our children to have fun learning to cook with them!” The microwave oven leakage standard, today in 2021, is the same as it was in 1973: 5 milliwatts per square centimeter at a distance of 5 centimeters. And the microwave exposure levels to the brain from every cell phone in use today are higher than that.
The Navy, at that time, was exposing soldiers to low-level microwave radiation in research being conducted in Pensacola, Florida. Echoing Frey, Zaret said these experiments were unethical. “I don’t believe it is possible,” he told the Senate committee, “to get informed, untainted consent from any young adult who agrees to be exposed to irradiation where you are not sure of what the end result is going to be… Also, that any children that he has at some future time may suffer from this irradiation.” He reemphasized the ethical problems with this research: “I think if it was explained fully to them and they still volunteered, for this project, one would question their mental capacity right off the start.”
Scientists experimenting on birds were just as alarmed by their results, and issued warnings about the environmental effects of the radiation our society was unleashing on the world that were just as dire as the warnings delivered to Congress by Milton Zaret, and the warnings delivered to the Navy by Allan Frey.
In the late 1960s and continuing through the 1970s, John Tanner and his colleagues at Canada’s National Research Council exposed chickens, pigeons and seagulls to microwave radiation, and found frightening effects at every level of exposure. Chickens exposed to between 0.19 and 360 microwatts per square centimeter for nine months developed tumors of the central nervous system, and avian leukosis – also a type of tumor -- of ovaries, intestines and other organs which in some birds reached “massive proportions,” on “a scale never seen before by veterinarians experienced with avian diseases.” Mortality was high in the irradiated birds. All the exposed birds, at every power level, had deteriorated plumage, with feathers lost, broken or with twisted and brittle shafts.
In other experiments, in which these researchers irradiated birds at higher power, the birds collapsed in pain within seconds. This occurred not only when the whole bird was irradiated but also when only its tail feathers were irradiated and the rest of the bird was carefully shielded. In further experiments, they proved that bird feathers make fine receiving aerials for microwaves, and speculated that migratory birds may use their feathers to obtain directional information. These scientists warned that increasing levels of ambient microwaves would cause wild birds distress and might interfere with their navigation.
Maria Sadchikova, working in Moscow; Václav Bartoniček and Eliska Klimková-Deutshová, working in Czechoslovakia; and Valentina Nikitina, who examined officers of the Russian Navy, found, as early as 1960, that the majority of people exposed to microwave radiation on the job -- even people who had ceased such employment five to ten years previously -- had elevated blood sugar or had sugar in their urine.
Animal experiments showed that the radiation directly interferes with metabolism, and that it does so rapidly. In 1962, V.A. Syngayevskaya, in Leningrad, exposed rabbits to low level radio waves and found that the animals’ blood sugar rose by one-third in less than an hour. In 1982, Vasily Belokrinitskiy, in Kiev, reported that the amount of sugar in the urine was in direct proportion to the dose of radiation and the number of times the animal was exposed. Mikhail Navakitikian and Lyudmila Tomashevskaya reported in 1994 that insulin levels decreased by 15 percent in rats exposed for just half an hour, and by 50 percent in rats exposed for twelve hours, to pulsed radiation at a power level of 100 microwatts per square centimeter. This level is comparable to the radiation a person receives today sitting directly in front of a wireless computer, and considerably less than what a person’s brain receives from a cell phone.
These were just a few of the thousands of studies being performed all over the world at that time that found profound effects of microwave radiation on every human organ, and on the functioning and reproduction of every plant and animal. Lieutenant Zory Glaser, commissioned by the U.S. Navy in 1971 to catalogue the world’s literature on the health effects of microwave and radio-frequency radiation, collected 5,083 studies, textbooks and conference proceedings by 1981. He managed to find about half of the literature existing at that time. So about 10,000 studies had proven microwave and RF radiation to be dangerous to all life, already before 1981.
Cooking Your DNA and Roasting Your Nerves
In the early 1980s Mays Swicord, working at the National Center for Devices and Radiological Health at the Food and Drug Administration, decided to test his conjecture that DNA resonantly absorbs microwave radiation, and that even a very low level of radiation, although producing no measurable heat in the human body as a whole, may nevertheless heat your DNA. He exposed a solution containing a small amount of DNA to microwave radiation, and found that the DNA itself was absorbing 400 times as much radiation as the solution that it was in, and that different lengths of DNA strands resonantly absorb different frequencies of microwave radiation. So even though the overall temperature of your cells may not be raised to any detectable degree by the radiation, the DNA inside your cells may be heated tremendously. Swicord’s later research confirmed that this damages DNA, causing both single- and double-strand DNA breakage.
Professor Charles Polk of the University of Rhode Island reported essentially the same thing at the twenty-second annual meeting of the Bioelectromagnetics Society in June 2000 in Munich, Germany. Direct measurements had recently shown that DNA is much more electrically conductive than anyone had suspected: it has a conductivity of at least 105 siemens per meter, which is about 1/10 as conductive as mercury! A cell phone held to your head may irradiate your brain at a specific absorption rate (SAR) of about 1 watt per kilogram, which produces little overall heating. Polk calculated, however, that this level of radiation would raise the temperature in the interior of your DNA by 60 degrees Celsius per second! He said that the tissues cannot dissipate heat that rapidly, and that such heating would rupture the bonds between complementary strands of DNA, and would explain the DNA breakage reported in various studies.
And in 2006, Markus Antonietti, at Germany’s Max Planck Institute, wondered whether a similar type of resonant absorption occurs in the synapses of our nerves. Cell phones are designed so the radiation they emit will not heat your brain more than one degree Celsius. But what happens in the tiny environment of a synapse, where electrically charged ions are involved in transmitting nerve impulses from one neuron to another? Antonietti and his colleagues simulated the conditions in nerve synapses with tiny fat droplets in salt water and exposed the emulsions to microwave radiation at frequencies between 10 MHz and 4 GHz. The resonant absorption frequencies, as expected, depended on the size of the droplets and other properties of the solution. But it was the size of the absorption peaks that shocked Antonietti.
“And now comes the tragedy,” said Antonietti. “Exactly where we are closest to the conditions in the brain, we see the strongest heating. There is a hundred times as much energy absorbed as previously thought. This is a horror.”
Efforts by the EPA to Protect Americans
Faced with a barrage of alarming scientific results, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established its own microwave radiation research laboratory which operated from 1971 until 1985 with up to 30 full-time staff exposing dogs, monkeys, rats and other animals to microwaves. The EPA was so disturbed by the results of its experiments that it proposed, already in 1978, to develop guidelines for human exposure to microwave radiation for adoption and enforcement by other federal agencies whose activities were contributing to a rapidly thickening fog of electromagnetic pollution throughout our nation. But there was pushback by those agencies.
The Food and Drug Administration did not want the proposed exposure limits to apply to microwave ovens or computer screens. The Federal Aviation Administration did not want to have to protect the public from air traffic control and weather radars. The Department of Defense did not want the limits to apply to military radars. The CIA, NASA, Department of Energy, Coast Guard, and Voice of America did not want to have to limit public exposure to their own sources of radiation.
Finally, in June 1995, with the telecommunications industry planning to put microwave radiation devices into the hands and next to the brains of every man, woman and child, and to erect millions of cell towers and antennas in cities, towns, villages, forests, wildlife preserves and national parks throughout the country in order to make those devices work, the EPA announced that it was going to issue Phase I of its exposure guidelines in early 1996. The Federal Communications Commission would have been required to enforce those guidelines, cell phones and cell towers would have been illegal, and even if they were not illegal, telecommunications companies would have been exposed to unlimited liability for all the suffering, disease and mortality they were about to cause.
But it was not to be. The Electromagnetic Energy Association, an industry lobbying group, succeeded in preventing the EPA’s exposure guidelines from being published. On September 13, 1995, the Senate Committee on Appropriations stripped the $350,000 that had been budgeted for EPA’s work on its exposure guidelines and wrote in its report, “The Committee believes EPA should not engage in EMF activities.”
The Personal Communications Industry Association (CTIA), another industry group, also lobbied Congress, which was drafting a bill called the Telecommunications Act, and a provision was added to the Act prohibiting states and local governments from regulating “personal wireless service facilities” on the basis of their “environmental effects.” That provision shielded the telecommunications industry from any and all liability for injury from both cell towers and cell phones and permitted that industry to sell the most dangerous technology ever invented to the American public. People were no longer allowed to tell their elected officials about their injuries at public hearings. Scientists were no longer allowed to testify in court about the dangers of this technology. Every means for the public to find out that wireless technology was killing them was suddenly prohibited.
The telecommunications industry has done such a good job selling this technology that today the average American household contains 25 different devices that emit microwave radiation and the average American spends five hours per day on their cell phone, has it in their pocket next to their body the rest of the day, and sleeps with it all night in or next to their bed. Today almost every man, woman and child holds a microwave radiation device in their hand or against their brain or body all day every day, completely unaware of what they are doing to themselves, their family, their pets, their friends, their neighbors, the birds in their yard, their ecosystem, and their planet. Those who are even aware there is a problem at all view only the towers as a threat, but their phone as a friend.
(to be continued)
Author, The Invisible Rainbow: A History of Electricity and Life
P.O. Box 6216
Santa Fe, NM 87502
phone: +1 505-471-0129
October 20, 2021
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|Source: Arthur Firstenberg, via newsletter, 20 Oct 2021|
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