News for Australia

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Botanist report links disappearance of birds, bats & insects to electromagnetic radiation
Australia Created: 22 Nov 2017
A report to UNESCO by botanist Mark Broomhall details the association between increasing amounts of electromagnetic radiation and species disappearance and exodus from the Mount Nardi area of the Nightcap National Park World Heritage Area during a 15-year period (2000-2015). Mt. Nardi has a tower complex, an installation of wireless antennas, that has steadily increased the electromagnetic emissions in the areas as new antennas were added over the years. The report contains a timeline of the activation of new antennas and documents the endangered birds, bats and plants that have decreased in the area. In addition, he states that from the year 2000, flying insects have been noticeably diminishing.

He estimates that 70 to 90% of the wildlife has become rare or has disappeared from the Nightcap National Park within a 2-3 km radius of the Mt. Nardi tower complex and summarized that concrete data shows:

3 bat species once common have become rare or gone
11 threatened and endangered bird species are gone
11 migratory bird species are gone
86 bird species are demonstrating unnatural behaviours
66 once common bird species are now rare or gone
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Environmental Health Trust, 22 Nov 2017

5G phone network: Expert concerned by lack of understanding of potential health effects
Australia Created: 19 Aug 2017
More research is needed into the potential health effects of new 5G mobile phone technology before it is rolled out in Australia, an international expert says.

The high-speed mobile phone network could be operational in Australia from 2020, offering up to 50 times the bandwidth currently available on 4G networks, allowing users to download the equivalent of three television episodes in a second.

Telstra announced last year it would run a world-first test of the technology for visitors to the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

International radio frequency expert Professor Dariusz Leszczynski, from the University of Helsinki, told a public lecture at Griffith University in Brisbane on Thursday night there was a concerning lack of understanding about the health effects.

"We know only that this radiation penetrates skin deep," Professor Leszczynski said.

"We don't have the faintest idea how normal-functioning skin will be affected."

Australia's radiation safety government body, the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), has backed calls to examine whether the country's current radiation safety standards need to be changed for the 5G rollout.

Research published on the agency's website said 5G technology could penetrate skin to a depth of 8 millimetres.

ARPANSA assistant director Dr Ken Karipidis said more research was needed.

"At the frequencies where 5G will be operating, the RF electromagnetic energy does not penetrate much further than the surface of the skin," Dr Karapidis said.

"Adverse health effects are not expected, and the current Australian Standard accounts for these.

"Nevertheless, further research in this area is required, particularly on effects on the skin and the eyes."
Radio frequency emissions a possible carcinogen

Professor Leszczynski was one of the 30 experts on an international World Health Organisation research team in 2011 that classified all radio frequency emissions as a possible carcinogen.

But ARPANSA said the Australian Radiofrequency Standard, based on international guidelines, protected the community from harm.

Professor Leszczynski said examining the health impacts after the technology was rolled out was not good enough.

"It appears we are having deja vu because in the early 1980s we thought that low-power emitting technology would be safe, no problems," he said.

"Thirty years later it appears it is possibly carcinogenic."

ARPANSA said it would be up to individual university research labs to pick up the agency's recommendations for more research into 5G frequencies.

A Telstra spokesman said the company ensured its wireless networks comply with Australian electromagnetic energy (EME) safety standards.

"We rely on the expert advice of a number of national and international health authorities, including ARPANSA and the World Health Organisation," the spokesman said.

"Research into EME, mobile phones and health has been going on for many years.

"The frequencies used by 5G have been used by other radio frequency applications such as satellite and radar for decades … 5G wireless networks are designed to be very efficient and minimise EME."
Click here to view the source article.
Source: ABC News, Isobel Roe, 18 Aug 2017

Free Public Lecture: Prof. Dariusz Leszczynski talk on 5G Wireless
Australia Created: 6 Aug 2017
“Global Expansion of the Wireless: The 5G dive into the great unknown” - Thursday 17 August 2017 @ 6:00 pm in 0.03, N16, Macrossan Building Lecture Theatre

See here for details:
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Dariusz Leszczynski, 06 Aug 2017

Is ICNIRP a Closed Club ?
Australia Created: 1 Aug 2017
Dear Readers, In this installment of our newsletter we have used ORSAA’s database to extend the work of both Starkey [1] and Hardell [2] who have looked at the EHC core group and their memberships/associations. What clearly stands out is the WHO Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) Group appears to be biased and ICNIRP is a closed club.

Reference 1. Dr Starkey’s paper entitled: “Inaccurate official assessment of radiofrequency safety by the Advisory Group on Non-ionising Radiation”

Reference 2 Professor Lennart Hardell’s latest paper entitled “World Health Organization, radiofrequency radiation and health - a hard nut to crack (Review)“

ORSAA has carefully looked at a number of attributes for each EHC “expert” as shown in the attached pdf and we have to say we find the linkages are very troubling.

*SNIP* Read the entire article via the source link below...
Click here to view the source article.
Source: ORSAA, Vince Leach, 01 Aug 2017

Tasmanian council rejects telco tower
Australia Created: 13 Jun 2017
Kingborough Council will not be giving consent to Optus Mobile Pty Ltd to lodge a development application for a proposed telecommunications tower at Sherburd Oval in Blackmans Bay, after seeking legal advice.

The General Manager, Gary Arnold sought legal advice regarding the status of the proposed tower as a low impact facility. The advice received stated that a replacement tower would require a development application to be lodged. Mr Arnold informed Council last night that as council delegate he was not prepared to authorise landowner consent for a development application to be submitted.

The Mayor of Kingborough, Cr Steve Wass said that Council was pleased to provide closure on this matter. “There has been strong community support for the location of this proposed tower to be rejected,” he said. “My fellow councillors and I have been listening to the concerns from our community and fully support the General Manager in this decision.”

For more information please contact
Sarah Wilcox, Media & Communications Officer for
Kingborough Council on 0428 033085 or 6211 8265.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: EMFacts, Don Maisch PhD, 12 Jun 2017

Jody, EHS, forced from her home by microwave tower, help her fund a safe-haven
Australia Created: 14 Feb 2017
A microwave tower, stationed 300 meters from my home has caused me to be homeless.

I suffer from Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Syndrome (EHS). The radiation from the tower effects every part of my body causing unrelenting pain and suffering.

The only option I have is to raise money to purchase non-radiated land, to relocate.

Please help me establish a healthy home.

You can help Jody via her GoFundMe campaign, via this link:
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Jody Watkins, 22 Sep 2016

Off with their heads! Return to Dark Ages as Maryanne Demasi & Catalyst crew axed for offending King Wireless!
Australia Created: 3 Nov 2016
It's the end of an era at the ABC, after the national broadcaster axed the Catalyst program today.

It was part of a tradition that went back into the last century and the program Towards 2000.

All the familiar faces on the Catalyst, along with their producers, were told today that they were redundant.

Management says it'll replace the weekly half hour science magazine with seventeen one-hour documentaries a year to be presented by leading scientists.

There's already anger about the move.

However, two programs in recent years - one about statins and one about wifi - have come under heavy fire, including from the ABC's own media watch, as alarmist, unprofessional and unbalanced.

Simon Chapman is Emeritus Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Sydney.

He spoke to PM about those two programs. (listen to interview via source link).

Related news:
Feb 2016, Australia: CATALYST journalist responds to criticism of WI-FI investigation
Feb 2016, Australia: ICNIRP's downunder-delegate goes bonkers over CATALYST TV investigation into WI-FI
Feb 2016, Australia: Wi-Fried? Prime-time TV show examines Wi-Fi health risks
Click here to view the source article.
Source: ABC, Mark Colvin, 03 Nov 2016

The effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation on sperm function
Australia Created: 10 Sep 2016
Abstract: Mobile phone usage has become an integral part of our lives - However, the effects of the radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation (RF-EMR) emitted by these devices on biological systems and specifically the reproductive systems are currently under active debate.

A fundamental hindrance to the current debate is that there is no clear mechanism of how such non-ionising radiation influences biological systems. Therefore, we explored the documented impacts of RF-EMR on the male reproductive system and considered any common observations that could provide insights on a potential mechanism.

Among a total of 27 studies investigating the effects of RF-EMR on the male reproductive system, negative consequences of exposure were reported in 21. Within these 21 studies, 11 of the 15 that investigated sperm motility reported significant declines, 7 of 7 that measured the production of reactive oxygen species documented elevated levels and 4 of 5 studies that probed for DNA damage highlighted increased damage, due to RF-EMR exposure. Associated with this, RF-EMR treatment reduced antioxidant levels in 6 of 6 studies that studied this phenomenon, while consequences of RF-EMR were successfully ameliorated with the supplementation of antioxidants in all 3 studies that carried out these experiments.

In light of this, we envisage a two-step mechanism whereby RF-EMR is able to induce mitochondrial dysfunction leading to elevated ROS production. A continued focus on research which aims to shed light on the biological effects of RF-EMR will allow us to test and assess this proposed mechanism in a variety of cell types.

Related news:
Jul 2015, Ukraine: 93 of 100 studies confirm Oxidative Stress from RF-radiation: review
Click here to view the source article.
Source: PubMed, Houston B. et al., 06 Sep 2016

Cyclist gets 3rd degree burns as iPhone explodes in back pocket and melts into skin
Australia Created: 2 Aug 2016
A Sydney man has received third-degree burns after bumping his iPhone in a very minor fall.

Gareth Clear, 36, was riding his mountain bike alone through Manly Dam on Sunday afternoon with his phone in his back pocket when his foot missed the pedal as he was beginning to move.

The resulting fall was tiny, and Mr Clear only received a few small grazes.

Moments later, after he got back up, he noticed smoke pouring from his rear and felt a searing sensation on the right side of his buttocks.

'I suddenly saw this incredible plume of smoke,' he said.

'And there was a searing pain that went along with it - as though someone had pushed a huge block of ice against my leg.

'It was pretty freaking painful.'

When Mr Clear turned around, he saw his thick biking shorts and the Skins he was wearing underneath were melting.

'The phone was stuck to my leg having melted through both my shorts and my Skins,' he said,

'It had to have been more than 100 degrees.'

As he tried desperately to remove the melting pants and the exploded phone, he burned his fingers, and instead used his fist to punch the phone off his burning skin.

The phone dislodged with a huge metallic bang before falling on the ground where smoke continued to pour out.

Mr Clear was alone at the time, with nobody around to help.

'I was on my own, writhing on the ground in agony,' he said.

However, knowing that the exploded, bent phone could do more damage to someone else if he left it, he waited for the device to cool so he could take it back with him as he walked back to Manly, alone.

'I basically sat there for about 20 minutes because I wanted to take the phone with me,' he said.

'I used two bits of wood to pick the phone up, and by the time I walked back to Manly with the phone and my bike - so probably another 30 minutes - it had finally cooled down.'

Mr Clear's burns were so bad that he was sent to the Royal North Shore burns unit for a skin graft, and will now spend the next six days attached to a machine which sits inside the graft, vacuuming out the dead, charred skin and encouraging healthy skin to grow in its place.

He said his initial concern was that the lithium from the exploded phone had tainted his blood.

'I thought I'd been poisoned,' he said.

'When I got to hospital though, that was the least of my concerns. They told me I'd lost three layers of skin.

'I said 'oh. Okay. Guess we'd better do something about that then.'

The accident has not deterred him from getting back on his bike, he says, but he'll never carry his iPhone with him again.

He wants his accident to be an eye opener to other active people who carry their phones with them.

'It's a tragedy waiting to happen,' he said.

'A mini bomb.

'Every iPhone is the same - if it happens to one, it will happen to another one. I was just lucky I was wearing pretty thick clothing and it was on my lower body.

'It could hurt someone else much more than it did me.'

Apple has contacted Mr Clear to say they are looking into the issue but have not provided any further comment.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Daily Mail Australia, Hannah Moore, 01 Aug 2016

Opinion piece: A response to the Demasi ABC Catalyst situation
Australia Created: 28 Jul 2016
I am shocked with the way Dr Maryanne Demasi of Catalyst programme “Wi-Fried” has been treated - I am a researcher who has been working in the field of radiofrequencies and health for some years. My PhD thesis was titled Wireless phone use by young New Zealanders: Health and policy implications. This was followed by a post-doctoral fellowship at Monash University. I have many papers in the peer reviewed literature.
The programme explored extremely important questions regarding health and safety and was, I believe, presented in a balanced way, as discussed below. While some of those interviewed were clearly extremely concerned, most of their comments were well handled. For instance, after Dr Davis showed an illustration of how far radiofrequencies can penetrate a child’s head, Dr Demasi reasonably enough showed surprise and asked, “Now, do we know that this translates into health effects for the child?” Dr Davis said, “No, we don’t ….”. Dr Demasi followed the response by explaining, accurately, that radiation exposure drops off exponentially with distance, distance matters. One comment from an interviewee I take issue with is Frank Clegg’s claim that the Standard in some countries is 100 times safer. The power density limit is indeed 100 times lower, but this does not necessarily translate into 100 times safer.

The programme also provided comment from ARPANSA, often to follow up a comment by another interviewee. Examples are after Dr Armstrong’s comment on the IARC 2B decision; after Dr Davis’ comment of radiofrequency exposure on sperm; and after Frank Clegg’s comment on international Standards; and both before and after talking to Drs Davis and Teo about brain cancer associations.

This is responsible reporting. Let’s look more closely at ARPANSA’S line.
Dr Karapidis said, “We’ve been doing research in this area for a very long time, and our assessment of the evidence suggests that although some studies do show effects, there is no established evidence that the low levels of radiofrequency radiation from tablets and phones and Wi-Fi and what-have-you, causes health effects” (my emphases). Just a note: Dr Karapidis does not seem to have personally done relevant research resulting in published any papers in the academic literature.
To be understood by a general audience, Dr Karipidis’ statement needs to be read with background knowledge of what ARPANSA means by “health effects” and “established evidence”.

ARPANSA has a very specific meaning for “health effect” which can be quite misleading, and undeservingly reassuring, if you are not aware of it: “an adverse health effect results in detectable impairment of the health of the exposed individual or of his or her offspring. A biological effect on the other hand may or may not result in an adverse health effect.” (ARPANSA, RPS3, 2002).

It is noteable that Dr Karipidis agreed that research does show “effects”. The studies showing effects is actually an extensive body of literature. Just two of many demonstrated and re-demonstrated effects include sperm damage and increased production of free radicals (Reactive Oxygen Species which can lead to oxidative stress and there on to inflammation and a variety of diseases). Oxidative stress is what people take fish oil to counter.

Effects such as sperm damage have been demonstrated from mobile phone emissions as well as from WiFi, although there is less literature specifically examining this source. For instance, at least one WiFi study (and many phone studies) found sperm did not move properly after exposure and DNA was broken. This could and should be regarded as a health effect using ARPANSA’s definition but has not been acknowledged as such by them or other bodies such as WHO. These are not regarded by the regulators as “established evidence”.

Inflammatory effects have been reported from radiofrequency exposure in a variety of situations. Just this year, research from three research groups has found inflammation or inflammatory markers after exposure in the liver of rats, and the eyes and salivary glands in people.

The general public (the ABC’s viewing audience) would I suspect consider increased free radicals leading to inflammation, and damage to their sperm, as health effects (and these are just two examples of many). ARPANSA does not.
What I suspect many members of the public, industry and regulators don’t like is that they don’t want to hear that their mobile phone and other devices may affect them adversely, so they shoot the messenger. The point is that safety (in terms of a wide variety of health outcomes) is by no means sure, and many biological effects which could lead to disease have been repeatedly demonstrated.

An important point in terms of the findings of breaching the broadcasting standards is the concept of consensus; in this field, consensus depends on whose conclusions you are referring to. The “scientific” consensus among Government and industry is that there is “no established evidence” – hardly reassuring when they are the ones who decide whether and when it’s established! However, if you were to ask all independent scientists internationally researching in this field I believe you would find a majority who are concerned by the existing evidence, and a great many who are convinced that problems exist.

The documentary may have been regarded as more challenging if radiofrequency radiation had been referred to as microwave radiation, even though this is a more specific and accurate name for most emissions from everyday transmitting devices. But it did not take this route.

The public knows very little about how the technology they use regularly works or may affect them. Most know very little about how to minimise their exposure without giving up using it. The Catalyst programme went a little way towards helping this situation. We need people like, and including, Dr Demasi bringing such well-researched documentaries on challenging issues to our attention. In my opinion, the points above invalidate the breach claims upheld in the ABC review committee report.

Mary Redmayne

Related news:
Feb 2016, Australia: ICNIRP's downunder-delegate goes bonkers over CATALYST TV investigation into WI-FI
Feb 2016, Australia: Wi-Fried? Prime-time TV show examines Wi-Fi health risks
Feb 2016, United Kingdom: The UK’s Science Media Centre model of science communication: An uncensored history
Click here to view the source article.
Source: EMFacts, Mary Redmayne PhD, 28 Jul 2016

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