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Landmark ruling made on rooftop phone masts in London
United Kingdom Created: 22 Oct 2020
A Tribunal ruling has set an annual payment of £5000 for a rooftop phone mast in London.

The case of CTIL v L&Q, where landowners L&Q were represented by law firm Clarke Willmott LLP will have major implications for future telecoms agreements for rooftop sites.

The Tribunal made it clear that operators should pay for temporarily shifting its equipment to allow landlords to carry out essential repairs. This, in turn, would put the onus squarely on the telecoms operator.

Clark Willmott Partner Kary Withers commented: “This is the first time that market evidence of new code deals has been considered by a Tribunal and that is why a figure of £5,000 p.a as opposed to £1,000 at a previous Tribunal case involving a property in Islington, has been arrived at.

“The Tribunal also concluded that unrestricted sharing is incompatible with ensuring the least possible loss to landowners.”

Martin Rodger QC commented during the trial that “the notion that landowners should pay for lift and shifts is ludicrous, [the parties] are out of their minds if they thought the landowner should pay”.

The Tribunal considered the use of a rooftop through common parts is likely to involve the landowner. They reviewed market evidence and decided that deals that were negotiated before the commencement of the new code and therefore could not be seen as reliable.

The consideration ordered included an allowance for building maintenance and insurance of £1500, an allowance of £1,000 for managing access, and an allowance for the anticipated costs for upgrading and sharing with two other operators.

The Tribunal considered that willing parties negotiating a 10-year arrangement would be more likely to agree to an annual payment rather than a one-off fee.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Mobile News, Saf Malik, 20 Oct 2020

New planning rules could allow for increased height of mobile phone masts
Scotland Created: 17 Oct 2020
An updated planning regime could see new ground-based mobile phone masts in Scotland being extended in height by five metres under draft proposals to change ‘permitted development rights’ legislation.

Existing laws governing the siting of digital communications infrastructure are set to be updated and could see ground based masts being extended to 30m in height, from the current 25m, “outside designated areas”, which include conservations areas, sites of special scientific interest, national parks and world heritage sites.

Updates to planning legislation around ‘priority development types’ were outlined in a new consultation document which has recently gone live on the Scottish Government website.

The consultation, which closes on November 12, makes clear that any increase in size of either new or pre-existing digital telecommunications infrastructure or equipment, which could bring about economic and climate change benefits, would have to be balanced against any environmental impacts, “particularly on sensitive areas”.

The consultation explains: “The Scottish Government is committed to reviewing permitted development rights (PDR) for digital communications infrastructure to assist in enhancing and rolling out vital and improved digital communications (e.g. the rollout of 5G) for all regions of Scotland. This has become even more important given our reliance on digital communications during the Covid-19 pandemic. The benefits of enhanced digital connectivity also result in less travel which contributes significantly towards climate change measures by reducing our carbon footprint.”

Among the aims of the proposals include the ability to:

- Increase existing size limits for PDR for digital infrastructure, i.e. new masts, extensions to existing masts, antennae and other equipment on buildings, equipment cabinets on the ground and on buildings, other apparatus, and underground equipment; and

- extend PDR for some types of digital infrastructure into sensitive areas, subject to lower size/height limits than elsewhere

In addition to new ground-based masts, the proposed updates to permitted development rights (PDR) would allow network operators to increase the size of existing masts beyond the current limits to improve mobile coverage or for maintenance purposes. Under the planned changes, which would apply to designated areas, the masts could be increased in height up to 30 metres (i.e. the same maximum height as for new masts..’) and also that ‘the increase should be limited to no more than 50% of the height of the original mast (whichever is the lower)’. The consultation outlines plans to allow existing masts which are above 30 metres in height to be increased to up to 50 metres in height.

Follow-up questions include whether mast size width should also be increased and whether replacement masts can be sited slightly further from existing locations; it also proposes extending dish antenna and other antenna systems on buildings and to ‘extend PDR beyond small antennas to cover small cell systems (small antennas and ancillary apparatus) on dwellinghouses and on all buildings in conservation areas’.

The full consultation is available here:
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Source: FutureScot, Kevin OSullivan, 15 Oct 2020

Experts warn of 'mass violation of rights' as contact-tracing data collected in pubs sold on
United Kingdom Created: 15 Oct 2020
Experts have warned of a “mass violation of rights” after customer data collected by pubs and restaurants has reportedly been sold on to third parties.

Contact-tracing data required by the NHS Test and Trace scheme has been harvested by tech companies on behalf of hospitality venues since they reopened in June, according to The Times.

Although the government states that the information can only be kept for 21 days and must not be used “for any purposes other than for NHS Test and Trace”, some firms are reportedly selling it on.

A number of the data collection firms have reportedly created privacy policies which allow them to store users’ data for up to 25 years and share it with third parties.

The practise was described as a “real scandal” by experts shortly after it was revealed as they called on the government to crack down on the companies.

University of Oxford professor Carissa Veliz tweeted: “In case public trust regarding #privacy wasn't low enough...
Read more: Missing 16,000 coronavirus tests glitch 'caused by large Excel spreadsheet file'

“Scandals like these are the product of decades of allowing an unethical business model that depends on the mass violation of rights to thrive unfettered. Haven't we had enough? #PrivacyIsPower”

Lawyer and TedX speaker Dana Denis-Smith tweeted: “Why isn’t this a surprise how many people read T&Cs on apps esp as they rush to eat out?”

Blogger Jennifer Howze said: “This is a real scandal and we should not be forced into sharing our personal data by govt!”

Harriet Sergeant, a researcher at the Centre For Policy Studies, tweeted: “Pubs and restaurants sell on our contact-tracing data under so called ‘privacy policies’. And that’s just what we know about.”

While Gaurav Malhotra, director of software development company Level 5, told The Times: “If you’re suddenly getting loads of texts, your data has probably been sold on from track-and-trace systems.”

So-called “quick response” QR barcodes have reportedly allowed companies to gain access to names, addresses, telephone numbers and email details.

QR codes have been widely adopted by the hospitality, leisure and beauty industries as an alternative to pen-and-paper visitor logs.

Currently the government requires these venues to collect the names and contact details of customers to help with the NHS Test and Trace programme.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Yahoo! News UK, George Martin, 11 Oct 2020

5G International Legal Action Network
USA Created: 8 Oct 2020
We are a professional network of lawyers and relevant experts, dedicated to redirecting the 5G Juggernaut toward balance and wisdom. Our species is rushing toward a future that feeds our addiction to speed, instant gratification, energy consumption, and disconnection from Earth. By creatively working together, we have a chance to cause a shift.

We are accomplishing our goal through concerted and effective legal action and education. We offer an opportunity for Human-Centered Lawyering on an international scale, based on the principle of Paying Forward, or passing the fruits of our discoveries on to others, thereby accelerating the process of new learning and practical application.

We invite you to join us:
Click here to view the source article.
Source: 5G International Legal Action Network

Objections against 20m phone mast outside school
United Kingdom Created: 7 Oct 2020
Hutchinson 3G UK has applied to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council asking form permission to install the mast on a piece of land at the corner of Vyne Road and Queen Mary Avenue, in South View, outside The Vyne School.

The installation would include six antennas and two transmission dishes, along with four equipment cabinets.

The application states: “This location has been identified as being integral to the needs of H3G’s network in this area”.

However, residents have objected to the plans, saying the location is not suitable. The height of the mast would be at least double that of an average two storey house.

Pauline Hughes, from Darlington Road, said: “It would stand well in excess of the surrounding streetlights and residential properties which are substantially less than 20m in height. Something of this height should be located in an industrial/employment area.”

She also pointed out that the mast might obscure the view for drivers using the junction.

Alison Jones, from Burgess Road, raised concerns about the safety of the mast, saying: “I already suffer from severe tinnitus and there is circumstantial evidence that transmission poles such as these make tinnitus worse.”

Mr Lampard, from Darlington Road, said in his objection: “I would rather live without 5G than with this proposal.”

He added: “Could the proposal be in a more obtrusive location? Placed on the exposed corner of Queen Mary Avenue it will instantly become the most striking landmark within the ‘conservation’ area.”
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Basingstoke Gazette, Emily Roberts, 06 Oct 2020

Dissent at Heart of Telecom Industry Undermines France’s 5G Push
France Created: 2 Oct 2020
A quarrel has emerged inside France’s biggest phone company over whether to build a new generation of wireless networks, days before the industry is due to commit billions of euros to their deployment in the country.

A group of employees of Orange SA called repeatedly for management to scrap the rollout of 5G services in memos circulated to colleagues on the Plazza social media platform.

The memos, issued in October 2019 and in May of this year, said the technology will be unprofitable and will damage the environment, according to three people familiar with their content.

Company managers investigated the employees after the memos were leaked to the French telecom industry federation, the people said.

The source of the leak was not found and no employees were sanctioned, one of the people added..The internal discord could fuel a growing anti-5G movement that began on social media and was adopted by the opposition Green party, which won control of several cities in local elections in June.

It’s become the most consequential of several grass-roots campaigns against the technology in Europe, some driven by conspiracy theories linking it to Covid-19.

Unlike neighbouring countries, France has not begun to deploy commercial 5G, which advocates say will enable applications from digital factories to driverless cars and supercharged smartphones.

It can consume up to three times more energy than 4G but handles many times more data at much higher speeds. The government has warned 4G towers will reach the limit of their capacity within the next couple of years.

A spokesman for Orange confirmed the company had conducted an investigation into the possible leak of an internal document, but it was not its intention to censor employees.

Orange “reaffirms the importance of 5G technology for the country’s competitiveness and its major usefulness in accelerating the environmental transition,” the spokesman added.

Health Concerns.

The government has resisted calls to delay the auction of 5G frequencies set for Sept. 29 that will begin the national rollout.

This week it published a report dismissing health concerns linked to 5G. In a speech on Sept. 14, President Emmanuel Macron portrayed 5G’s critics as hostile to progress.

The Orange memos were written by “I’m So Green,” a group of employees that says it has around 1,000 members. Bloomberg obtained a copy of the second, 24-page memo titled “Without 5G: Orange in The Future World.”

It said the main beneficiaries of 5G will be smartphone makers, tech platforms, such as Whatsapp or YouTube, and the government.

“Orange will bear all the heavy investments (licenses, equipment, rollout) that will benefit other companies at the bottom of the food chain and possibly the state,” the authors wrote.

Senior people in the industry have also voiced reservations over 5G, wary of a headlong rush to deploy it given the uncertain outlook for investment returns. France was emerging from a brutal wireless price war when coronavirus lockdowns took another chunk out of the profits needed to pay for 5G. Orange shares on Sept. 8 reached their lowest closing level since March 2014.

The chairman of Bouygues Telecom’s parent company, Martin Bouygues, questioned the wisdom of pressing ahead with 5G this year, arguing in an op-ed piece in May that the technology was not a priority in a pandemic. Still, all four of France’s big phone carriers say they’ll bid at the auction, in a process that will commit them to installing 5G equipment at 10,500 sites by 2025.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Bloomberg, Helene Fouquet & Ania Nussbaum, 18 Sep 2020

Dudden Hill neighbours successfully campaign against 5G mobile masts in their area
United Kingdom Created: 2 Oct 2020
Hutchinston 3G proposed an 18 metre 5G mast with a wrap around and three cabinets on Cullingworth Road.

Neighbours appealed against the poles citing a loss of footpath space, the height of the mast and security concerns for the property next door as the cabinets would facilitate jumping over the residential back wall.

Last month Brent Council rejected the application.

5G - billed as the “next generation” of mobile coverage - operates at a much higher frequency than its predecessors, and continues to be rolled out in cities across the UK.

Jackie Morrell, of Fleetwood Road, said: “It was a great relief to learn that the council had taken in all our many concerns about the proposed installation and has refused approval.

“It is a very difficult time for all of us now coping with the pandemic and this extra stress has been awful for us and our neighbours throughout the area. We are not against the technology but it must benefit everyone and not infringe upon anyone’s quality of life.”

Lead petitioner Kishan Patel, added: “Once we were made aware of the proposed plans on August 18, we took it upon ourselves to inform and engage the local community, including the church, school, and residents of Fleetwood House.

“The overwhelming response was opposition to the proposed location of the mast, along with questions as to why other, more suitable locations were not firstly considered.

“Whilst I do understand and appreciate that technological advancements may necessitate the mast, this proposed location was clearly unsatisfactory. We are pleased with the council’s decision and this represents a great victory for the local community.”

Cllr Anton Georgiou: “I supported the petition along with my grandmother as we worried about the impact the mast would have. I am pleased the council have refused this application. It is essential that wherever masts like this are installed, thorough assessments of their impact are conducted. Really great that people power won the day!”
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Brent & Kilburn Times, Nathalie Raffray, 01 Oct 2020

Government faces legal challenge over 5G phone masts 'safety fears'
United Kingdom Created: 1 Oct 2020
The government’s rollout of the 5G mobile network is facing a High Court legal challenge amid safety fears around the new generation of phone masts.

Ministers announced in July it was relaxing planning permission requirements for the extension and upgrade of phone masts around the country, to accelerate the implementation of the 5G network.

Today, a judicial review was launched into that decision, challenging the consultation carried out, accusing civil servants of withholding key scientific data from ministers before the decision was made, and claiming that safety fears around 5G masts have not be allayed.

Among the parties to the legal challenge is Phillip Watts, a retired engineer and trustee of the EM Radiation Research Trust, who says his health has suffered from living close to a phone mast.

“While there is so much concern around health issues associated with 5G infrastructure, it cannot be right to give mobile phone companies carte blanche to invade our cities, towns, communities and residential streets with controversial technology," he said.

Another of the claimants is Brian Stein CBE, the former chief executive of food manufacturing firm Samworth Brothers Ltd who has also campaigned about the effects of mobile phone technology.

“The jury is clearly still out on the long-term impacts of exposure to mobile phone radiation”, he said. “Given the lack of consensus even amongst the scientific community, it is just not right that the government has recently decided to remove barriers for the mobile phone companies to roll out this controversial new technology, rather than making sure more time for consideration is built in to every stage.

“I myself have suffered health issues which I am convinced are a direct result of living close to a mobile phone mast, so I am personally very disappointed – as well as concerned for others - in the government’s stance.”

The legal claim was lodged today by law firm Learmond Criqui Sokel, with top barrister David Wolfe QC due to lead the court challenge.

It is claimed the Housing, Communities and Local Government and Digital, Culture, Media and Sport departments did not conduct a proper consultation on the decision to relax planning permission requirements on 5G masts.

Campaigners say at least 400,000 masts are due to be installed as the 5G network is expanded, and they claim pre-claim correspondence with the government shows an “entire body of detailed, cross-referenced and evidenced scientific material” on radiation and possible health impact of masts was kept from ministers.

“When questions about risk to public health have been raised, it is simply not right for civil servants to take it upon themselves to withhold vital scientific and other evidence”, said lawyer Jessica Learmond-Criqui.

Campaigners want the court to declare the government’s decision-making process as unlawful and order a fresh consultation.

The government said it would not comment on the case at this stage.

In July, announcing the end of the government's consultation, minister for Digital Infrastructure Matt Warman told the House of Commons: "We are satisfied that the proposed reforms are necessary to support the Government’s ambitions for the deployment of 5G and extending mobile coverage, particularly in rural areas, where mobile coverage tends to lag behind more urban areas.

"In taking forward these proposals, we will ensure that the appropriate environmental protections and other safeguards are in place to mitigate the impact of new mobile infrastructure."
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Evening Standard, Tristan Kirk, 01 Oct 2020

China Unicom deactivating 5G masts overnight due to power consumption
China Created: 29 Sep 2020
When people talk about 5G, they’re often talking about the enormous boost in speed you’ll get from using the new mobile network technology. What many people don’t realise, though, is that it’s also expending a lot more energy for Chinese telecom companies.

At the beginning of August, a China Unicom branch announced that it would put some of its ZTE 5G base stations to sleep between 9pm and 9am to reduce electricity costs in the city of Luoyang.

A recent white paper from telecom equipment maker Huawei illustrates the problem: 5G base stations use up to three-and-a-half times more energy than 4G infrastructure. Part of the problem is that this new generation of mobile connectivity requires more densely placed base stations.

So as China has been rapidly rolling out new 5G base stations, reaching 410,000 nationwide in June, some cities are putting the ones they have to sleep to save energy because there aren’t enough users yet.

But Unicom, one of the country’s three state-owned telecom companies, is trying to assure users that they aren’t likely to see any change in service. “There’s no need to make a fuss,” said China Unicom CEO Wang Xiaochu.

“Shutting down base stations is not a manual shutdown, but an automatic adjustment made at a certain time, which has no impact on consumers and is good for investors,” Wang said, according to local media reports.

Wang’s comments came after news of the base station hibernation had some people questioning whether it was worth it to pay for 5G subscriptions if the stations won’t be accessible at certain hours. Unicom maintains that it isn’t a problem because hibernation schedules change according to need.

Li Fuchang, deputy director of the wireless networks research department at China Unicom’s Network Technology Research Institute, said that the hibernation function of the active array units (AAU) turns off the power supply when a base station is idle. This happens when there are no 5G users connected.
By adjusting the hibernation according to real-time data, operators can significantly reduce electricity and maintenance costs, Li recently told
Science and Technology Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology.

“When the base station is normally enabled, compared with the peak period, the energy consumption of the base station in the latter half of the night is not much reduced,” he said “However, most of the energy consumption is ‘ineffective energy consumption’.”

China first launched what it called the world’s largest 5G network at the end of last year
with subsidised plans. The technology is meant to herald the arrival of ultra-fast wireless broadband internet, but availability remains limited.

As 5G connectivity spreads, some researchers argue that the technology’s environmental impact, which includes energy and waste problems, is being overlooked.

Thanks to its wide roll-out, China is one of the first countries that will have to tackle this issue. But eventually the problem will be global.

Telecommunications equipment giant Ericsson warned in a report published in March that the communications technology industry will need to lower total mobile network energy consumption while facing massive traffic growth. Energy-saving software, replacing old equipment and using artificial intelligence can help achieve this, according to the report.

But operators will also have to change how they did business in the past.

“Energy consumption is set to increase dramatically if 5G is deployed in the same way as 3G and 4G were,” Ericsson CTO Erik Ekudden said in the report.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Abacus Tech, Masha Borak, 27 Aug 2020

The Ministry of Health recommends removing WiFi, basestations and smartphones from school grounds
Russia Created: 29 Sep 2020
The Ministry of Health, the Academy of Sciences and the Russian Committee for the Protection of Non-Ionizing Radiation recommend starting the school year without WiFi, smartphones and cellular base stations on school grounds.

The document "Hygienic standards and special requirements for the device, content and modes of operation in the digital educational environment in general education" which for the first time set out hygienic restrictions to the exposure of schoolchildren by the electromagnetic field of the equipment of the digital educational environment has been published.

The regulations were developed under the methodical guidance of the Medical Sciences Department of the Russian Academy of Sciences with the participation of members of the Russian National Committee for Protection from Non-ionizing Radiation. The full text is available on the website of the Institute of Hygiene and Child and Adolescent Health of fgaus "National Medical Research Center for Children's Health" of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation

The text of the document is included in the draft HEALTH AND EXPERIENCE AND LEARNING, REST AND HEALTH AND YOUTH.
Here are some excerpts in the limitation of exposure from electromagnetic irradiation from WiFi, smartphones and cellular base stations:

"3.1. Requirements for a digital educational environment

3.1.2. It is not recommended to use wireless data systems in educational organizations to create a local computer network, internet connection, and to connect PC peripherals. With wireless data transmission, the distance from WiFi to the nearest workplace should be at least 5 m. In classrooms, on floors, in detached buildings for elementary school students, the installation and use of wireless data system, as well as the use of wireless connection of PC peripherals is not allowed.

3.1.4. Smartphones are not allowed to be used for educational purposes (reading, searching for information). The use of personal mobile communications by trainees in an educational organization should be limited if the need is not due to health conditions. The deployment of mobile cellular base stations on the territory of educational organizations is not recommended.

3.2 Requirements for online training at home

3.2.1. Online training should include a personal computer or laptop connected to the Internet. When using a wireless data system, the distance from the WiFi point to the student's workplace must be at least 5 m.

3.2.2. The use of more than two different ESOs for one user (personal computer and tablet, laptop and tablet) is not allowed in the classes.

3.2.3. Smartphones are not allowed to be used for educational purposes (reading, searching for information)"
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Russian National Committee to Protect Against Non-Ionizing Radiation, 01 Sep 2020

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