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Ban on mobile phone masts in Solihull set to end
United Kingdom Created: 17 Sep 2019
A stance that the council took in the 1990s - amid fears about whether the technology posed a health risk - could be dropped, with a national drive to improve 5G coverage.

A long-standing ban on installing mobile phone masts on council-owned land and buildings in Solihull looks set to end.

For more than 20 years the local authority has followed a policy laid out when there was greater concern about the possible health risks of electronic communications equipment.

In 1992, councillors had agreed to refuse future requests to erect microwave dishes on its property and, five years later, two applications to install radio antennae were dismissed - setting a further precedent.

While telecoms giants have been able to use "statutory powers" to override the council stance when it comes to highways, the policy has effectively remained in place elsewhere.

But a new report suggests Solihull will need to "review" its historic position in response to the government's drive to increase 5G coverage, with town halls being urged to remove obstacles facing operators.

Failing to do would go against the nationwide Electronic Communications Code, recently updated, and leave the local authority open to a legal challenge from companies, it has been suggested.

Although any application would still need to go through the standard planning process.

Council officer Martin Clayton said: "The explicit aim of the reforms, which are embodied in the ‘barrier busting’ measures recommended by both government and WMCA [West Midlands Combined Authority], is to make it easier and more cost effective for network providers to deploy and maintain digital infrastructure."

The decisions taken in the 1990s came at a time when there was widespread uncertainty about the possible impact that the technology could have on people's health.

In his report, Mr Clayton has said that scientific research over the last two decades has considered these fears.

Advice quoted on Public Health England's website said: "Independent expert groups in the UK and at international level have examined the accumulated body of research evidence.

"Their conclusions support the view that health effects are unlikely to occur if exposures are below international guideline levels."

Although a recent row over a mast installed in Yardley Wood Road, Solihull Lodge, proves the issue still has power to cause controversy.

Proposals to review the "moratorium" adopted in the 1990s will be discussed at tonight's (Monday's) meeting of the resources and delivering value scrutiny board.

The issue will then be considered by the council's cabinet at its next meeting on October 10.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Birmingham Live, David Irwin, 16 Sep 2019

Mississauga to Examine Safety Concerns Surrounding 5G and Wi-Fi
Canada Created: 17 Sep 2019
For the vast majority of Canadians (and people all over the world, to be fair), technology is no longer a luxury—it is a necessity that people believe (for good reason) makes life easier and better.

But while few would argue that our current levels of connectivity are a bad thing, some local residents are questioning whether experts are being cautious enough when it comes to grand-scale Wi-Fi and 5G rollouts.

While Health Canada has determined that Wi-Fi poses little risk to those who are exposed to it, some residents and activists doubt the research into the relatively new technology is as fulsome as it should be. Some residents are also concerned about the eventual introduction of 5G cellular network technology, arguing that it could potentially harm Canadians—especially children.

Since 5G is quite new (and not yet available in Canada), the Region of Peel, which is comprised of Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon, is set to receive a report documenting the health and safety impacts of the technology in the fall.

At a recent regional council meeting, Caledon resident Cristina Zampiero called on council to explore 5G technology further, while also encouraging the region to consider removing Wi-Fi (but not the internet, computers or modern technological devices) from schools.

She also suggested that cell phones should be hardwired, turned off or set to airplane mode while in schools to prevent exposure to current 4G technology.

"Today, I’m here to talk about 5G and wireless health dangers and removing wireless from our schools," she began.

"Science and medicine are warning that wireless radiation causes damage to DNA. The scientific debate is over the 4G levels to which we are currently exposed. Next-generation 5G will exponentially increase these [electromagnetic] fields," she said.

Zampiero told insauga.com that her concerns over Wi-Fi grew when she became a mother, and she's been researching the topic ever since.

"When I gave birth, I became concerned. I had a kid and thought 'uh oh, I have to put this kid in school and it's microwave soup there'. Sending those waves through the air has its drawbacks," she said.

Zampiero said she has her doubts about Health Canada's conclusions on wireless technology in its Safety Code 6 guidelines, and she's not alone.

Over the past few years, organizations such as Canadians For Safe Technology (C4ST) have been sounding the alarm about illnesses that some health experts have linked to wireless technology, such as electrical sensitivity.

Prior to a recent Wireless Technology Symposium at Women's College Hospital in Toronto, doctors and scientists appeared at Queen's Park to encourage the provincial government to "take steps to protect public health" before the roll-out of wireless 5G.

"My clinic is already assessing patients from across Ontario who are sensitive to microwave radiation from their wireless devices including cell phones, Wi-Fi, and an increasing number of smart appliances," said Dr. Riina Bray, medical director of the Environmental Health Clinic at Women's College Hospital, in a statement released in May 2019.

"We expect wireless 5G to add to this burden."

While it's not yet clear if wireless technology can indeed trigger malignant tumours in people, the World Health Organization (WHO) has published some literature on electromagnetic hypersensitivity (the illness that doctors expressed concern over at the Wireless Technology Symposium).

The WHO says that Electromagnetic hypersensitivity (or EHS) is characterized by a variety of non-specific symptoms, which suffers attribute to exposure to electromagnetic fields.

According to the WHO, common symptoms include skin irritation such as redness, tingling, and burning sensations and general fatigue (tiredness, concentration difficulties, dizziness, nausea, heart palpitation, and digestive disturbances.

The WHO says the collection of symptoms is not part of any recognized syndrome, which indicates the illness isn't likely to be caused by a different ailment.

As for how many people suffer from the illness, the WHO says a survey of occupational medical centres estimated the prevalence of EHS to be a few individuals per million in the population. That said, the organization notes that a survey of self-help groups yielded much higher estimates and that approximately 10 per cent of reported cases of EHS were considered severe.

C4ST says that scientists from dozens of countries are now warning their governments about the emerging health problems reportedly associated with wireless radiation, claiming that daily human exposure to microwave radiation is already more than a trillion times higher than it was before cell phones.

C4ST also quoted Dr. Anthony Miller, professor emeritus with the University of Toronto and adviser to the International Agency for Research on Cancer, who said that "many scientists worldwide now believe that radiofrequency radiation should be elevated to a Class One human carcinogen, on the same list as cigarettes, x-rays, and asbestos."

But is wireless technology dangerous?

At this juncture, Health Canada says that Wi-Fi is safe.

It's also important to note that while both Wi-Fi and 4G/5G use wireless technology to power devices, they're not quite the same thing.

Wi-Fi is the second most prevalent form of wireless technology in Canada next to cell phones, and it allows devices such as computers, smartphones, and video game consoles to communicate data wirelessly.

Health Canada acknowledges that some people are concerned that radiation from Wi-Fi equipment could cause health problems and that children may be at particular risk in school environments, as Wi-Fi equipment emits radiofrequency fields (RF).

But the agency says that if the technology is emitted at recommended levels, it's safe and doesn't need to be avoided.

According to Health Canada, the RF energy given off by Wi-Fi is a type of non-ionizing radiation. Unlike ionizing radiation (such as the kind emitted by x-ray machines), RF energy from Wi-Fi equipment and other wireless devices cannot break chemical bonds.

"While some of the RF energy emitted by Wi-Fi is absorbed in your body, the amount largely depends on how close your body is to a Wi-Fi enabled device and the strength of the signal," Health Canada says.

"Unlike cellular phones where the transmitter is in close proximity to the head and much of the RF energy that is absorbed is deposited in a highly localized area, RF energy from Wi-Fi devices is typically transmitted at a much greater distance from the human body. This results in very low average RF energy absorption levels in all parts of the body, much like exposure to AM/FM radio signals."

When it comes to cell phones (4G notwithstanding), Health Canada does say that some precautions should be taken.

According to Health Canada, there are a small number of epidemiology studies that have shown brain cancer rates may be elevated in long-term/heavy cell phone users—but not every study has confirmed this finding.

Health Canada says that in 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified RF energy as “possibly carcinogenic to humans”.

The health agency says that, since the jury is out, more research into potential health concerns associated with cell phones is required.

"The IARC classification of RF energy reflects the fact that some limited evidence exists that RF energy might be a risk factor for cancer. However, the vast majority of scientific research to date does not support a link between RF energy exposure and human cancers. At present, the evidence of a possible link between RF energy exposure and cancer risk is far from conclusive and more research is needed to clarify this 'possible' link. Health Canada is in agreement with both the World Health Organization and IARC that additional research in this area is warranted," Health Canada's website reads.

Zampiero told insauga.com that few people know that even cell phone manufacturers provide safety warnings to consumers.

"People are addicted to their phones, but every cell phone's instruction manual says to keep it 15 mm away from your body."

As far as 5G goes, Health Canada says that although the upcoming technology will function as a significant evolution of today's 4G LTE wireless networks, the country's current safety protocol is appropriate for the rollout.

"5G will provide the infrastructure to allow for more data and connectivity, the Internet of things with billions of connected devices, and tomorrow's innovations in various fields such as healthcare, public safety, transportation, agriculture, and smart cities. 5G will operate in both the lower frequency spectrum (below 6 GHz) as well as at higher frequencies called millimetre wave spectrum (above 6 GHz)," Health Canada said on its website.

Health Canada says the current Canadian limits already cover the frequency ranges that will be used by 5G devices and antenna installations.

"Similar to current wireless devices and installations, 5G devices will need to meet RF exposure requirements before they can be sold in Canada. Antenna systems operators using 5G technology will continue to have the same RF exposure compliance obligations. Furthermore, compliance with RF exposure requirements will continue to be an ongoing obligation," Health Canada says.

But while many experts have declared the technology safe, residents such as Zampiero fear that Wi-Fi and 4G/5G technology is today's cigarette—thought to be harmless now, but declared dangerous much later.

When presenting to council, Zampiero mentioned a study conducted by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services that found that cell phone radiofrequency radiation was associated with the development of malignant tumours in rodents.

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) study found that that high exposure to RFR (900 MHz) used by cell phones was associated with clear evidence of tumours in the hearts of male rats, some evidence of tumours in the brains of male rats and some evidence of tumours in the adrenal glands of male rats.

While the results are concerning on their face, the study authors said that some 5G waves aren't expected to penetrate the body as deeply.

"As the 5G network is implemented, some of the signals will use the same lower frequencies as the older technology previously studied by NTP. Additionally, concern has been raised because the 5G network will also use higher frequencies, up to 60,000 MHz, thereby exposing wireless consumers to a much broader spectrum of frequencies," the study reads.

"The higher frequencies, known as millimeter waves, can rapidly transmit enormous amounts of data with increased network capacity compared to current technologies. Millimeter waves do not travel as far and do not penetrate the body as deep as the wavelengths from the lower frequencies. Millimeter waves are likely to penetrate no deeper than the skin, as opposed to the lower frequencies that have been shown to penetrate at least three to four inches into the human body."

Zampiero is disputing Health Canada's assurances that wireless technology is safe, as the results from the NTP study contradict its conclusions.

"Health Canada standards are wrong," she told council.

"The study repeatedly found evidence of cancer. What about babies, children and pregnant women? Where is the accommodation for those with electrosensitivity sickness? It’s not enough to routinely meet concerns [by saying] emissions are well within Health Canada guidelines. These guidelines indicate acceptable radiation levels which are orders of magnitude above what has been demonstrated as safe when non-thermal effects are considered."

Zampiero argues that Health Canada’s Code 6 is not protective and that in countries such as India and Italy, some organizations have taken steps to hardwire fibre optic cables in certain facilities.

She's been calling on other facilities—especially educational ones—to consider eliminating Wi-Fi and 4G while keeping technology accessible in the classroom.

"Hardwiring is safer, faster and more secure and would avoid wirelessly radiating millions of unsuspecting citizens. The writing is on the wall, please pause the 5G rollout. Would you truthfully want to live next to a cell tower given the choice? Cell towers placed too close to people violate our human right to protect our health," she told council.

Zampiero told insauga.com that while she's dedicated to increasing awareness of potential dangers associated with wireless technology, she is not anti-technology.

"Kids need their tech, but they don't need it radiating on them. If you plug it in, it doesn't emit. Kids are amazing at tech and they're more evolved, but I don't want to send my baby to a school with a Wi-Fi router."

School boards have been quick to adapt to new technology, but some educational institutions have decided to hardwire devices to err on the side of caution—including the Caledon East Children's Centre daycare.

"Cristina did a presentation to our board of directors a few weeks ago. After that, the board took a vote to temporarily hardwire the office as opposed to using the Wi-Fi and do so on a trial basis and see what impact it has on us," said Brenda McNairn, executive director of the facility.

McNairn told insauga.com that the transition was relatively simple.

"We had to buy an ethernet cable and adapter. Each classroom in the daycare used to access their tablets via Wi-Fi. They don’t use it a lot for programming within the classroom for the kids. The impact on the classroom was fairly minimal," she said.

Back in the summer, McNairn said the facility was in the process of getting one computer hardwired.

"We’re a small business, so it was a minimal impact—$120 to buy a cable and adapter. This is a small change for us. We decided to do this on a trial basis to see if it was possible."

McNairn said her facility decided to make the change because it wasn't difficult to mitigate potential risk to children.

"It’s our responsibility to care for other’s people children and we don’t want to put these kids at unnecessary risk. The research is in its early stages, but Cristina presented the board with a lot of data and research from countries around the world who have taken that step back to be hardwired."

McNairn also acknowledged that the decision was an easier one to make in a smaller facility with fewer children.

"A school with 2,000 children might be a different story. Our clients are 15 months to six years of age, so we don’t have computer stations that the kids use on a regular basis. We were able to hardwire the office."

McNairn said the decision garnered praise from a parent who was relieved to see the daycare agree to hardwire.

"We did have one parent say that she made the decision to not put her child in full-day kindergarten because we had made the decision to hardwire, so that’s a big impact on one family," she said.

While Zampiero believes Canada needs to act, her campaign to have Wi-Fi removed from schools and 5G studied more aggressively is taking off at the local level—hence her appeal to regional council to demand more from experts.

"This is the most important function of our government since Wi-Fi causes cancer. It does not belong in our schools because kids absorb 75 per cent more radiation. There are laws banning it in Australia, India, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, Israel, Cyprus and Finland. Please regulate tighter restrictions," she said.

"You did it for peanut allergies. To not respect developments in science and warnings of top scientific experts would seem crazy. Would you have your child ingest something that hundreds of peer-reviewed studies say is harmful just last week?"

During the presentation, Zampiero suggested that wireless technology could be "the greatest environmental and safety threat of our time," adding that governments might be slow to act on warnings because telecommunications companies are such economic behemoths (a concept explored in this 2018 UK Guardian article about the link between cell phone use and cancer).

"Please don’t tell me it’s not within your jurisdiction. The two takeaways are our kids need to learn about technology from safely hard-wired devices, not wireless. With respect to 4 and 5G, appropriate testing must happen before it’s allowed to roll out."

During her presentation, Zampiero referred to the Oregon legislature's recent decision to pass a bill to study the effects of Wi-Fi radiation on children—a move that she believes to be a positive one.

After Zampiero's presentation, councillors said that she's not the only one asking questions about the safety of 5G and wireless technology.

"This is a question that has been vexing residents for quite some time and as the communications sector continues to evolve and move towards 5G technologies, the kinds of questions you are posing here today, I can attest are intensifying," said Peel Regional and Brampton City Councillor Paul Vicente.

Vicente asked Dr. Jessica Hopkins, a medical officer of health for the Region of Peel, for an update on the report slated to come to council in the fall.

"Staff are currently conducting a review of the health evidence related to this issue and we will report back in the early fall to regional council on that," Hopkins told council, adding that staff had been in touch with other public health agencies, including Health Canada.

Vicente also questioned some studies linking wireless technology radiation to cancer, saying more information is needed about the amount of radiation and the animals it's exposed to.

"I know one of the things that folks tend to read a lot about is studies [about] radiation that comes from cell towers. One of the things that’s not explained very well is, first of all, the types of radiation used but also the intensity and the proximity of that radiation to the animal that’s being tested, and so that’s an important factor," he said.

"One of the ideas behind 5G as an evolution of telecommunications technology is that the energy levels are meant to be much lower than even the 4G communications technology. So we’re looking forward to seeing what the science really says and how it affects [people] because the fact is is that radiation is everywhere and what really affects whether or not it has an impact on rates of cancer or tissue damage is the level of the energy that is being used. We look forward to that information coming and to having that information presented to council for its consideration."

Caledon and regional council Johanna Downey asked Hopkins how Health Canada's Code 6 compares to health regulations in other countries.

"Health Canada set Safety Code 6 to protect the public. This is science-based and similar to the requirements and other countries including the United States the European Union, Japan, Australia, New Zealand," Hopkins said.

But while it's not clear what, if any action Canada or Canadian organizations will take to limit Wi-Fi and 4/5G exposure (or whether action should be taken barring more research into the potential health impacts on residents), Zampiero is hoping she can convince more schools to hardwire.

"Tech is a wonderful thing, but we're making some mistakes with it," she told insauga.com.

"With 5G, what are we going to get that we don't already have? We already have the speed with fibreoptics, but this microwave stuff is used in stealth military weapons. I hope that we rely on unbiased, independent research on health effects with 5G. I want people to do their due diligence. I can opt-out of going to a Tim Hortons with Wi-Fi, but I can't opt-out of sending my kids to school."

Should schools begin to hardwire, Zampiero hopes a ripple effect ensues—but she isn't targeting bigger institutions at this time.

"Being free of Wi-Fi all day, every day is better for your body. I hope that together, we can get it taken out of the schools. If schools turn it off, do I hope for a ripple effect? Sure. I'm not going that far yet, but if it's not on at school or in your home, that's less of it. I care about kids and about people. This [5G] hasn't been tested."

A report on the potential health impacts of 5G technology will be made available to council in the coming weeks.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: InSauga, Ashley Newport, 16 Sep 2019

Cellphone Users Sue Apple and Samsung Over Radiation Exposure
USA Created: 14 Sep 2019
San Francisco’s Andrus Anderson represents a class action of phone owners who say they would not have purchased or paid top dollar for their cells if they had known about the risks of contact with radiofrequency radiation.

Andrus Anderson in San Francisco is representing 16 plaintiffs against Apple and Samsung in a controversy some in the medical and scientific community are allegedly calling “Phone Gate.”

The complaint, filed Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco, claims that members of the class action would not have purchased their phones had they known their Apple and Samsung devices exposed them to radiofrequency radiation exceeding the regulatory limits.

Lawyers from Fegan Scott in Chicago and Shindler, Anderson, Goplerud & Weese in West Des Moines, Iowa, join Andrus in alleging that Apple and Samsung put their clients’ health at risk by designing products that emit heightened levels of RF radiation. Too much of the radiation, created by the transfer of energy waves, can increase cancer risks, cause cellular stress and jeopardize reproductive health, according to the complaint.

The Apple and Samsung products that the phone owners say they keep close to their body could exceed exposure limits in some instances by 500%, according to recent studies cited in the lawsuit.

In 1996, the Federal Communications Commission set the limit for RF radiation absorption to 1.6 watts per kilogram averaged over one gram of tissue. However, the complaint cites a test conducted by the Chicago Tribune and the RF Exposure Lab in San Marcos, California, which found exposure rates up to four times the legal guidelines in some phones. With the iPhone 7, the study found radiation exposure increased significantly the closer it was to a person, such as in their pocket or touching their skin, according to the complaint.

“We intend to show that Apple and Samsung were fully aware that they marketed their phones to be used in ways in which testing showed users would be exposed to dangerous levels of RF radiation—without warning consumers,” said Elizabeth Fegan of Fegan Scott in an email.

Some of these campaigns include Apple describing its phones as “the internet in your pocket,” or “your life in your pocket,” disregarding the increased RF radiation risks when the phones are carried in pockets or against skin, according to the complaint.

“Similarly, Samsung markets its smartphones to be used in a variety of contexts, including in bed and against the skin for sonograms,” the attorneys write. “Defendants cannot hide behind regulatory compliance on testing to protect its marketing and advertising which knowingly misrepresents the true risks of RF radiation exposure when smartphones are used while touching or in close proximity to the human body.”

When asked about the attorneys’ plans to demonstrate concrete harm from the alleged exposure, Fegan said that consumers would not have paid up to $1,000 dollars for Apple and Samsung phones had they known the risks. “These damages are recoverable as out-of-pocket losses and/or as the failure to receive the benefit of the bargain under consumer protection laws,” she said.

The plaintiffs attorneys filed a similar class action complaint in August in the San Jose division of U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The district is no stranger to litigation over potential cellphones’ RF radiation emissions. The city of Berkeley and the telecommunications industry has been litigating the enforcement of an ordinance requiring mobile device retailers to warn consumers of potential RF radiation exposure since 2015. Most recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the Northern District of California’s denial of a preliminary injunction of the law brought by telecommunications industry group CTIA—The Wireless Association.

Neither Apple or Samsung responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Law.com, Alaina Lancaster, 11 Sep 2019

Consultation on new permitted development rights for telecomms apparatus
United Kingdom Created: 13 Sep 2019
Recently, the government announced a consultation on proposals to reform permitted development rights (PD rights) for operators under the Electronic Communications Code (Code Operators). The aim of the proposals is to support 5G technology and extend mobile coverage. Four new PD rights are proposed, two of which would require prior approval from the local planning authority (LPA), two of which would not. Bearing in mind the infrastructure that will be needed for greater mobile coverage and to get ready for 5G, and considering the potential impact on them of the proposed rights, landowners and developers should consider taking the opportunity to respond to the consultation.

The PD rights proposed are to enable the deployment of radio housing equipment on land (apart from on Sites of Scientific Interest) and the strengthening of existing masts for 5G upgrades and mast sharing. These rights would not require “prior approval” from the LPA, which means that the LPA would not need to be notified before the rights are implemented by Code Operators and will not therefore have an opportunity to take into account the interests of other parties such as landowners, occupiers or neighbours. PD rights are also proposed for the deployment of “building-based” masts nearer to highways, and higher masts for for better mobile coverage and mast sharing, although both of these rights would require prior approval.

A recent decision reminds landowners that they can face a tough test when trying to resist the imposition of Electronic Communications Code rights in favour of operators. In EE Ltd v Chichester [2019] UKUT 164, where a landowner tried to resist the imposition of the Code by a mobile phone network operator by claiming that they wanted to redevelop the land on which a mast stood, the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) confirmed that a landowner had to demonstrate “both that they have a reasonable prospect of being able to carry out their redevelopment project and that they have a firm, settled and unconditional intention to do so”. Landowners will have even less control over their land if the proposed PD rights are progressed. However, some comfort may be gained from another recent decision, Mawbey v Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure [2019] EWCA Civ 1016, where the Court of Appeal discussed whether or not a central support pole was a “radio mast” – in this case, it was decided that such poles were indeed masts and that they therefore did not have the benefit of PD rights.

The government says that they will consider responses to this consultation and that another consultation on more detailed proposals wil be held in due course.
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, Fiona Sawyer & Mathew White, 11 Sep 2019

Could Bristol councillors end the roll-out of 5G in Bristol?
United Kingdom Created: 12 Sep 2019
Campaigners are calling for Bristol City Council to switch off the network over radiation fears.

A debate urging council chiefs to stop the roll-out of 5G in Bristol is set to take place at City Hall next week.

The service, which allows faster phone data speeds, has been operational in the city since July 3 on the Vodafone network.

But campaigners are calling for Bristol City Council to switch off the network over radiation fears.

Montpelier nutritional therapist Sally Beare launched a petition earlier this year urging the authority to follow Geneva and Florence in adopting “the precautionary principle”, halting 5G until there is more information to show it is safe.

Nearly 4,000 people have added their names to the petition which is enough to trigger a special debate in the council chamber which is set for Tuesday (September 10).

Ms Beare said she first became passionate about the issue when she happened across a statement made by Washington State University’s Dr Martin Pall.

Dr Pall describes the introduction of 5G as “the stupidest idea anyone has had in the history of the world”.

He says it risks cancer because “an extraordinary number of antennae are required, high outputs are needed for penetration, pulsation levels will be very high, and it will have an impact on the human body’s cellular electrical field”.

Public Health England (PHE) says it does not expect 5G to impact on people’s health.

But Ms Breare is not convinced and says it is “not scaremongering to say that 5G will cause illness and death”.

She added: “It is clear from the independent science that parents will lose children and children will lose parents.

“It is an outdated myth that non-ionising radiation is safe; it is not.

“Microwave radiation from existing mobile networks has been found in thousands of peer-reviewed studies to cause harm to health, including neurological effects, nervous system issues and cancer.

“Several recent large-scale studies have shown that mobile radiation causes fatal brain and heart cancer; a proper look at the data also shows that brain gliomas in England - the type associated with mobile radiation - have doubled in the last twenty years.

“Some of the most powerful and progressive cities in the world, such as Brussels and parts of Geneva, have banned 5G for health reasons.

“Bristol should be looking to them and to the experts in human radiation effects, and not to our fractured, insecure government, for guidance.”

A separate petition against 5G, signed by 235 scientists and doctors across the world, warns the network will "massively increase" people's exposure to mobile phone radiation they say could cause cancer.

But Head of radiation dosimetry at Public Health England (PHE), Simon Mann, said: “It is possible that there may be a small increase in overall exposure to radio waves when 5G is added to an existing telecommunications network or in a new area.

“However, the overall exposure is expected to remain low relative to guidelines and as such there should be no consequences for public health.”

A PHE spokesman added the body is committed to making sure 5G radio waves comply with International Committee on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) guidelines.

He said PHE will update its advice “should new evidence dictate that is necessary”.

A Vodafone spokesperson said: “The radio frequencies used for 5G in the UK are similar to the ones currently used for 4G services. Where 4G uses frequencies between 800 MHz and 2.6GHz, 5G uses frequencies between 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz.”
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Bristol Live, Kate Wilson, 05 Sep 2019

Mast warning issued to British farmers ahead of 5G network rollout
United Kingdom Created: 2 Sep 2019
Rollout of 5G could accelerate telecoms operators looking to use land without paying farmers and landowners the prices they may have received in the past.

Michael Watson, head of property litigation and telecoms expert at Shulmans, said farmers had previously allowed telecommunications operators to install mobile phone masts and other apparatus on their land to generate additional income.

“This free market worked well when upgrading the networks to 3G and 4G,” he said.

“However, major problems lie ahead with the roll out of 5G because the market for mast sites has effectively seized up.”

It follows the introduction of the new Electronic Communications Code in December 2017, which has impacted on the relationship between landlords and telecommunications companies.

“Since the new code came into force, telecoms operators have slashed the prices they are prepared to offer in order to be able to install their apparatus on farmland,” he said.

“Unsurprisingly, this has resulted in landowners withdrawing from the market.

“Network operators want use of landowners’ properties for business without paying much at all and if the owners do not agree, they will ask the tribunal to impose their terms regardless.”

And with the rollout of 5G imminent, this process may accelerate.

He added: “Landowners need to carefully consider whether they are prepared to make their assets available for the use of network operators, regardless of whether they are willing to defend their assets.”

Mr Watson said anyone deriving income from telecoms apparatus needed to be aware they may be targeted for significant payment reductions and could be threatened with action under the code.

He warned farmers not to wait until an approach was received from an operator to renew agreements, as the opportunity for developing an effective strategy ‘may have already been compromised’.

He added the new code and the approach of operators has alienated the people who the sector relied on and destroyed the market for mast sites.

“Until there is a fundamental change of approach by network operators, the farming industry must to face up to the reality of the new code and either accede to the demands of the operators or prepare and respond accordingly.”
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Farmers Guardian, Alex Black, 02 Sep 2019

The Ombudsman notes that the 5G Implementation Plan has not passed environmental assessments
Spain Created: 1 Sep 2019
The Vallisoletana Association of People Affected by Telecommunications Antennas (AVAATE) who denounced it recalls that in the 5G pilot projects a frequency band is used for which the safe exposure limits have not yet been set.

(Following is a automatic translation from original article in Spanish).

The Ombudsman has ruled on the 5G Implementation Plan following the complaint filed by the Vallisoletana Association of People Affected by Telecommunications Antennas (AVAATE) and the conclusion is clear: The implementation of 5G technology in Spain has not been subject of prior environmental assessment by the authorities. A prior environmental evaluation of the Plan or of the pilot projects that derive from it has not been officially made and the refusal of the Ministry of Economy and Business to do it has not been justified despite the fact that various associations requested it during the public information process of the Plan.

In a resolution signed by Francisco Fernández Marugán and date of departure on August 21, the Ombudsman emphasizes that the Ministry, through its Secretary of State for Digital Advancement, has ignored various articles of Law 21/2013, of Environmental Assessment, avoiding consulting the draft of the 5G Plan and the draft of the 5G pilot projects to the corresponding environmental body . In addition, as the Ombudsman acknowledges, in the pilot projects that are being carried out, a frequency band will be used for which the safe exposure limits have not yet been set , which is something totally contrary to the principle of caution. For all these reasons, it is urgent that once and for all the Commission on Radio Frequency and Health, established for more than five years in the General Telecommunications Law, be established.

The Ombudsman considers that the 5G National Plan has not taken into account its environmental aspects and has not valued them even for the purpose of justifying that a regulated evaluation of the same was not required under Law 21/2013, December 9, Environmental Assessment.

The Ombudsman has addressed the Secretary of State for Digital Advancement of the Ministry of Economy and Business recalling the legal duty of “Submitting plans and projects in the field of telecommunications to strategic environmental assessment and environmental impact assessment respectively, when they meet the requirements established in Law 21/2013, on Environmental Assessment ”.

He has also reiterated his suggestion that the draft regulation by which the Interministerial Commission on Radio Frequency and Health, and that it be approved by the Council of Ministers, be prepared jointly with the Ministry of Health, Consumption and Social Welfare. Once constituted, it has requested that the aforementioned Commission be submitted for consultation regarding the application of the precautionary principle in the development of projects that involve the use of the 26 GHz band, as long as the safe limits are not determined of exposure to radioelectric emissions required for said frequency.

Finally, it has requested the Secretary of State to report on the measures taken to assess the possible health effects that may arise from the 5G pilot projects in Andalusia and Galicia, if these Communities have been consulted on these projects and if they have been awarded or new ones will be awarded during the temporary scope of the 5G National Plan.
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Source: UltimoCero, 27 Aug 2019

Apple, Samsung slapped with class action over handset RF emissions
USA Created: 27 Aug 2019
That was fast - Two days after a Chicago Tribune investigation found many contemporary mobile phones, including late-model iPhones, do not comply with radio frequency emissions standards, Apple and Samsung are being sued over alleged damages and problems related to RF exposure.

Related news:
Aug 2019, USA: We tested popular cellphones for radiofrequency radiation. Now the FCC is investigating.

The class action suit, filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Friday, claims RF radiation emitted from smartphone devices designed and manufactured by Apple and Samsung exceed legal limits set forth by the Federal Communications Commission. Further, the case takes issue with marketing materials that claim the products operate within regulated guidelines, with neither company issuing warnings about potential negative health effects related to the allegedly high RF emissions.

"Numerous recent scientific publications, supported by hundreds of scientists worldwide, have shown that RF radiation exposure affects living organisms at levels well below most international and national guidelines," the filing reads. "Effects include increased cancer risk, cellular stress, increase in harmful free radicals, genetic damages, structural and functional changes of the reproductive system, learning and memory deficits, neurological disorders, and negative impacts on general well-being in humans."

The suit relies almost exclusively on results from an independent study performed by RF Exposure Lab on behalf of the Chicago Tribune. A report published on Wednesday notes exposure from devices including iPhone 7, iPhone 8, iPhone X and recent Galaxy smartphone models exceeded federally mandated limits in a number of tests.

Plaintiffs argue Apple "covered up any risks by misrepresenting the safety of the smartphones" and misled customers by not informing them of potential ill effects from iPhone's RF exposure.

The complaint notes Apple has in past declared RF exposure information, including Specific Absorption Rate (SAR), for public viewing and provided recommendations defining the closest distance at which a user should carry the device. According to the filing, the company stopped furnishing such information with the release of the iPhone 7.

For its part, Apple in a statement to The Tribune disputed the paper's findings, saying they "were inaccurate due to the test setup not being in accordance with procedures necessary to properly assess the iPhone models."

"All iPhone models, including iPhone 7, are fully certified by the FCC and in every other country where iPhone is sold," the company added. "After careful review and subsequent validation of all iPhone models tested in the (Tribune) report, we confirmed we are in compliance and meet all applicable exposure guidelines and limits."

Named class plaintiffs include owners of Apple's iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 and iPhone X, and Samsung's Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8. Attached to the suit are Chicago-based lawyers Beth Fegan and Timothy A. Scott, partners at law firm Fegan Scott which on Thursday put a call out to potential class candidates.

"The fact that the Chicago Tribune can convene a group of experts and develop such convincing findings shows that the phone manufacturers may be intentionally hiding what they know about radiation output," Fegan said in a statement Thursday. "This could be the Chernobyl of the cell phone industry, cover-up and all."

Along with the suit, The Tribune's findings prompted the FCC to conduct its own testing of the reportedly non-compliant devices.

Plaintiffs seek class status, injunctive relief and damages including costs of medical monitoring, restitutions and wrongfully obtained revenue.
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Source: Apple Insider, Mikey Campbell, 23 Aug 2019

We tested popular cellphones for radiofrequency radiation. Now the FCC is investigating.
USA Created: 27 Aug 2019
The Apple iPhone 7 was set to operate at full power and secured below a tub of clear liquid, specially formulated to simulate human tissue.

With the push of a button, a robotic arm swung into action, sending a pencil-thin probe dipping into the tub. For 18 minutes, it repeatedly measured the amount of radiofrequency radiation the liquid was absorbing from the cellphone.

This test, which was paid for by the Tribune and conducted according to federal guidelines at an accredited lab, produced a surprising result: Radiofrequency radiation exposure from the iPhone 7 — one of the most popular smartphones ever sold — measured over the legal safety limit and more than double what Apple reported to federal regulators from its own testing.

The Federal Communications Commission, which is responsible for regulating phones, states on its website that if a cellphone has been approved for sale, the device “will never exceed” the maximum allowable exposure limit. But this phone, in an independent lab inspection, had done exactly that.

The Tribune tested three more brand-new iPhone 7s at full power, and these phones also measured over the exposure limit. In all, 11 models from four companies were tested, with varying results.

The Tribune’s testing, though limited, represents one of the most comprehensive independent investigations of its kind, and the results raise questions about whether cellphones always meet safety standards set up to protect the public.

After reviewing the lab reports from the Tribune’s tests, the FCC said it would take the rare step of conducting its own testing over the next couple of months.

“We take seriously any claims on non-compliance with the RF (radiofrequency) exposure standards and will be obtaining and testing the subject phones for compliance with FCC rules,” agency spokesman Neil Grace said.

The Tribune set out a year ago to explore an important question: Are cellphones as safe as manufacturers and government regulators say?

Though it’s unclear whether radiofrequency radiation from cellphones can increase cancer risk or lead to other harm, that question is increasingly pressing given the widespread use of cellphones today. Many children and teenagers may face years of exposure.

The newspaper’s testing was not meant to rank phone models for safety – only 11 models were examined, and in most cases just one device was tested. Nor is it possible to know whether any of the cellphones that tested above limits could cause harm. Two of the phone manufacturers, including Apple, disputed the Tribune’s results, saying the lab used by the newspaper had not tested the phones the same way they do.

But the results of the Tribune’s investigation contribute to an ongoing debate about the possible risks posed by radiofrequency radiation from cellphones, and they offer evidence that existing federal standards may not be adequate to protect the public.

Industry officials and manufacturers emphasize that before a new model can be brought to market, a sample phone must be tested and comply with an exposure standard for radiofrequency radiation. But manufacturers are allowed to select the testing lab — and only a single phone needs to pass in order for millions of others to be sold.

Companies testing a new phone for compliance with the safety limit also are permitted to position the phone up to 25 millimeters away from the body — nearly an inch — depending on how the device is used. That’s because the testing standards were adopted in the 1990s, when people frequently carried cellphones on belt clips.

In one phase of the Tribune testing, all phones were positioned at the same distance from the simulated body tissue that the manufacturers chose for their own tests — from 5 to 15 millimeters, depending on the model. Apple, for instance, tests at 5 millimeters.

But people now often carry phones closer to the body, in their pockets, which increases their potential exposure to radiofrequency radiation.

To assess this kind of exposure, the Tribune asked its lab to conduct a second phase of testing, placing the phones 2 millimeters away from the simulated body — closer than any of the manufacturers’ own tests and far less than the maximum distance allowed by the FCC.

The 2-millimeter distance was chosen to estimate the potential exposure for an owner carrying the phone in a pants or shirt pocket. Under those conditions, most of the models tested yielded results that were over the exposure limit, sometimes far exceeding it.

At 2 millimeters, the results from a Samsung Galaxy S8 were more than five times the standard.

The Government Accountability Office, Congress’ research arm, recommended in 2012 that the FCC reassess the exposure limit and its testing requirements, saying that because phones weren’t measured while against the body, authorities could not ensure exposures were under the standard.

Seven years later — after a lengthy period of public comment — the FCC came to its conclusion. The agency announced this month that the existing standard sufficiently protects the public and should remain in place.

Few other government officials have acted in recent years to address the possible risks of radiofrequency radiation from cellphones. But in California, the state Public Health Department in 2017 issued rare guidance on how concerned consumers could reduce exposure.

Among the advice: Don’t carry cellphones in pockets.

Apple, Samsung respond
When informed of the Tribune’s test results and provided with the laboratory’s 100-page lab report, Apple disputed the findings, saying they were not performed in a way that properly assesses iPhones.

The Tribune’s tests were conducted by RF Exposure Lab, a facility in San Marcos, Calif., that is recognized by the FCC as accredited to test for radiofrequency radiation from electronic devices. For 15 years, the lab has done radiation testing for wireless companies seeking government approval for new products.

Lab owner Jay Moulton said all the Tribune’s tests were done in accordance with detailed FCC rules and guidelines.

“We’re not doing anything extraordinary or different here,” Moulton said. Any qualified lab "should be able to grab a phone off the shelf and test it to see if it meets requirements.”

Apple, one of the world’s most iconic brands, would not say specifically what it thought was wrong with the Tribune’s tests or reveal how the company measures its phones for potential radiofrequency radiation exposure.

Still, based on Apple’s feedback, the Tribune retested the iPhones in the investigation as well as an additional iPhone 7, making a change aimed at activating sensors that would reduce power.

Once again, the iPhone 7s produced results over the safety limit, while an iPhone 8 that previously measured over the standard came in under.

When informed of the new results, Apple officials declined to be interviewed and requested the Tribune put its questions in writing. The newspaper did, submitting three dozen, but Apple did not answer any of them.

Apple then issued a statement, repeating that the Tribune test results for the iPhone 7s “were inaccurate due to the test setup not being in accordance with procedures necessary to properly assess the iPhone models.”

“All iPhone models, including iPhone 7, are fully certified by the FCC and in every other country where iPhone is sold,” the statement said. “After careful review and subsequent validation of all iPhone models tested in the (Tribune) report, we confirmed we are in compliance and meet all applicable … exposure guidelines and limits.”

Apple did not explain what it meant by “careful review and subsequent validation.”

The three Samsung phones tested by the Tribune — the Galaxy S8, Galaxy S9 and Galaxy J3 — were positioned at 10 or 15 millimeters from the body, the distances chosen by the company in accordance with FCC guidelines. In these tests, the devices measured under the safety limit.

But when the phones were tested at 2 millimeters from the simulated body — to represent a device being used while in a pocket — the exposures measured well over the standard.

Samsung, based in South Korea and one of the world’s top smartphone makers, said in a statement: “Samsung devices sold in the United States comply with FCC regulations. Our devices are tested according to the same test protocols that are used across the industry.”

FCC officials would not comment on individual results from phones tested by the Tribune. They said that although the Tribune testing was not as comprehensive as what would be required for an official compliance report, they would examine some of the phone models in the newspaper’s investigation.

Assessing the risk
Around-the-clock cellphone use represents one of the most dramatic cultural shifts in decades. In 2009, an estimated 50 million smartphones were in active use in America, according to the wireless industry association CTIA. Today, there are 285 million. Twenty-nine percent of U.S. teens sleep with their cellphones in bed with them, according to a 2019 report by the nonprofit organization Common Sense Media.

Some researchers say safety efforts have not kept pace. “These days,” said Om Gandhi, an early researcher of cellphone radiation at the University of Utah, “exposure is from cradle to grave.”

Cellphones use radio waves to communicate with a vast network of fixed installations called base stations or cell towers. These radio waves are a form of electromagnetic radiation, in the same frequency range used by TVs and microwave ovens.

This kind of radiation, also known as radiofrequency energy, shouldn’t be confused with ionizing radiation, such as gamma rays and X-rays, which can strip electrons from atoms and cause serious biological harm, including cancer.

Radiofrequency energy from cellphones isn’t powerful enough to cause ionization, but at high levels it can heat biological tissue and cause harm. Eyes and testes are especially vulnerable because they do not dispel heat rapidly.

Less understood is whether people, especially children, are at risk for other health effects, including cancer, from exposure to low-level cellphone radiation over many years — potentially decades.

When cellphones hit the market in the 1980s, authorities focused on setting an exposure limit to address only the heating risks of cellphones. Scientists found that animals showed adverse effects when exposed to enough radiofrequency radiation to raise their body temperature by 1 degree Celsius. Authorities used this finding to help calculate a safety limit for humans, building in a 50-fold safety factor.

The final rule, adopted by the FCC in 1996, stated that cellphone users cannot potentially absorb more than 1.6 watts per kilogram averaged over one gram of tissue. To demonstrate compliance, phone makers were told to conduct two tests: when the devices were held against the head and when held up to an inch from the body.

These testing methods didn’t address the anatomy of children and that of other vulnerable populations, such as pregnant women, said Joel Moskowitz, a cellphone expert at the University of California at Berkeley.

“It was like one-size-fits-all.” Plus, he said, “I don’t think anyone anticipated the smartphone and how it would become so integral to our lives.”

The devices became ubiquitous and were increasingly slipped into pockets rather than carried on belt clips. The number of scientific studies related to cellphone radiofrequency radiation soared.

Last fall, in one of the largest studies to date, the National Toxicology Program, a research group within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, found that high exposure to the kind of radiofrequency radiation used by cellphones was associated with “clear evidence” of cancerous heart tumors in male rats.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which shares regulatory responsibilities for cellphones with the FCC, responded to the study by assuring the public there was no danger to humans at “exposures at or under” safety limits. But the Tribune’s testing, disputed by manufacturers, found results from some cellphones over the exposure standard, particularly when tested close to the body.

Despite the changing ways people use phones, both the FCC and FDA said the current exposure limit protects the public. The agencies cite the 50-fold safety margin incorporated into the standard, as does CTIA, the industry association.

Over the limit
A half-hour drive north of San Diego, in the city of San Marcos, is RF Exposure Lab, a low-slung beige and white building that has the look and layout of a dentist’s office. Down the main hallway, past several doors, is a room with dozens of large containers labeled “Head Tissue” and “Body Tissue.”

Moulton, the lab owner, recalled how an intern once spilled some “body tissue” on himself and “freaked out because he thought it was real human tissue.” But it was just a mixture of mostly water, sugar and salt that simulates the electrical properties of the body. The liquid is used frequently at the lab, one of the few facilities in the U.S. that is accredited to test phones and other devices for radiofrequency radiation.

Moulton founded the lab in 2004 after serving as engineering director for chip-making giant Qualcomm. There, he said, he often wrestled with the radiation issue while helping design phones for Verizon.

The Tribune hired Moulton to conduct tests on 11 different models of cellphones, all purchased new by the newspaper. The tests took place in a 10-foot-by-10-foot room outfitted with copper screen windows to reduce electrical interference. In the middle of the room was a “phantom body,” an oval-shaped tub the size of a kitchen sink. Inside the tub was a body tissue mixture.

Moulton carefully positioned the first phone to be tested — an Apple iPhone 8 — under the phantom body so that it was 5 millimeters from the outside of the tub. This separation distance was the same gap selected by Apple in its tests and was in accordance with federal guidelines.

Using a base station simulator outside the room, Moulton placed a call to the iPhone 8 and adjusted the settings so the device was operating in the same band, frequency and channel that yielded the highest radiofrequency radiation reading reported by Apple to the FCC during the regulatory approval process — data that is available on the agency website.

The phone was now operating at full power, creating what was essentially a worst-case scenario in terms of radiofrequency radiation exposure. Typically, Moulton said, consumers do not experience exposure like this. But it could happen, he said, in limited situations, such as someone talking continuously in an area with a weak connection.

A probe attached to a robotic arm moved up and down, and back and forth, in the fluid, taking 276 measurements of the radiation absorbed. After a few minutes, the probe stopped, and the results appeared on a nearby computer screen: The radiofrequency radiation level for the iPhone 8 measured 2.64 W/kg — more than double the highest value Apple reported to the FCC and well over the 1.6 safety limit.

Moulton said he was surprised. “Maybe the phone’s power sensor isn’t working,” he said. “It’s supposed to be on."

Almost all smartphones, he said, have power sensors — also known as proximity sensors — designed to detect when the device is touching or extremely close to a person. When that occurs, the phone is supposed to reduce power, decreasing radiofrequency radiation.

“Let’s see how this iPhone 7 does,” he said, picking up the next phone to be tested. He secured it 5 millimeters under the phantom body, placed a call to the phone and activated the probe.

Minutes later, the results were in: 2.81 W/kg, again over the limit. He tested another iPhone 7, getting a similar result: 2.50 W/kg.

“Still high,” Moulton said.

As more phones were tested, some results came in low. For instance, Samsung’s Galaxy S9, S8 and J3 phones measured under the standard.

But the lab had tested the Samsung phones relatively far away from the simulated body, because that’s how the manufacturer had tested the devices when seeking FCC approval.

Two Samsung phones were tested at 10 millimeters away and one at 15 millimeters — still within federal guidelines but much greater than the 5-millimeter gap chosen by Apple for its tests.

So how would the Samsung devices and other models fare when tested at a consistent distance, one even closer to the body?

The ‘pocket test'
To help answer this question, the Tribune cut out pieces of dress shirts, T-shirts, jeans, track pants and underwear and sent them to Moulton. His measurements indicated that phones carried in pants or shirt pockets typically would be no more than 2 millimeters from the body.

Moulton then conducted the same radiation tests, using the same methods and equipment. The only difference was that the phones were placed 2 millimeters from the phantom body — closer than any of the manufacturers’ own tests and much closer than the maximum distance allowed by the FCC.

Maybe, he said, the phones’ proximity sensors would kick in at this closer distance, and the radiofrequency radiation levels would drop accordingly.

But most phones still showed high levels. The four iPhone 7s tested at 2 millimeters produced results twice the safety standard. The iPhone 8 measured three times over; the Moto e5 Play from Motorola measured quadruple the standard.

And the Samsung Galaxy phones?

All three measured at more than twice the standard, with the Galaxy S8 registering 8.22 W/kg — five times the standard and the highest exposure level seen in any of the Tribune tests.

Only two phones came in under the standard in the 2-millimeter “pocket test": an iPhone 8 Plus and a BLU Vivo 5 Mini.

Moulton said he couldn’t be certain why any of the phones in the Tribune tests scored as they did.

Only the manufacturers, he said, could say for sure.

Seeking an explanation
Apple and Motorola disputed the Tribune’s testing protocol but declined to answer written questions.

Motorola officials did say one thing about the high exposure measurement for their Moto e5 Play, which came in nearly three times the safety limit in a 5-millimeter test at the Tribune lab: They speculated the test did not trigger the proximity sensors in that phone.

Though the Tribune’s lab had followed all FCC testing methods, the newspaper subsequently retested the Moto e5 Play, slightly altering the previous testing method to reflect Motorola’s input. The Tribune also retested a Moto g6 Play, which had scored right at the safety limit in the first test, as well as an additional model, a Moto e5.

When tested with these modified methods, the exposure results for all three phones were under the limit at the 5-millimeter distance.

Moulton said the two test results for the e5 Play indicate that its sensors may not work under certain conditions.

Motorola, which is based in Chicago, said in a statement that “all Motorola devices meet or exceed FCC requirements" but would not answer questions about its power sensors.

“Our power management techniques and expertise provide Motorola with a significant competitive advantage in the marketplace, and are therefore highly confidential,” the company’s statement said. “The Chicago Tribune’s third-party lab was not privy to the proprietary techniques from Motorola necessary to elicit accurate results.”

Rules set by the FCC require that radiofrequency radiation testing be done “in a manner that permits independent assessment.”

Motorola said that after receiving the Tribune’s test results, it had the models in question tested at its outside lab, which “found results were within the appropriate limits.” When the Tribune asked Motorola to explain how it tests its phones, the company declined. It also would not share its lab reports.

The Tribune also retested several iPhones based on Apple’s feedback. A reporter touched or grasped the phones for the duration of the tests, actions intended to activate sensors that are designed to reduce the devices’ power.

In these tests, the iPhone 8 measured under the limit at 5 millimeters, but all four iPhone 7s did not.

In response to these results, Apple issued a statement saying the lab procedures in the Tribune testing still were improper. The company, based in Cupertino, Calif., wouldn’t say what methods were necessary.

FCC documents show that when Apple sought agency approval in 2016 to market the iPhone 7, the company promised to “take appropriate action” on any complaint “relating to the product’s compliance with requirements of the relevant standard.”

Apple, which said it validated the safety of its phones in response to the Tribune testing, would not provide any additional detail about the actions it took to evaluate the phones.

The company also wouldn’t comment on the information it provides the public on radiofrequency radiation. Consumers can find such information on their iPhones, but it’s difficult.

On the iPhone 7, for instance, a user would go to Settings > General > About > Legal > RF Exposure. There, the term “radiofrequency radiation” is not used but rather “RF energy,” a reference to radiofrequency exposure.

To reduce exposure, Apple suggests using “a hands-free option, such as the built-in speakerphone, the supplied headphones, or other similar accessories.”

For some past models, Apple gives additional advice. Apple’s website tells users of the iPhone 4 and 4s: “Carry iPhone at least 10mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.” The site says those phones were tested at a distance of 10 millimeters.

When Apple submitted its application to the FCC to market the iPhone 7, the company included a similarly worded radiation statement, suggesting users carry the device at least 5 millimeters from the body, records show.

But iPhone 7s eventually sold to the public did not include that advice.

When the Tribune asked Apple in its written questions why that suggestion was not included, the company did not respond.
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Source: Chicago Tribune, Sam Roe, 21 Aug 2019

Phones banned: California public school becomes largest in country to go phone-free
USA Created: 22 Aug 2019
When students got their textbooks at the beginning of the year at San Mateo High School, they also received the Yondr pouch, a locking device for their phones.

The phone slides into it and gets locked through a magnetic device. It's not unlocked again until the final bell rings. The procedure will repeat every day for the rest of the school year.

Adam Gelb, the assistant principal ran a pilot project last year with 20 students and decided to do a school-wide, bell to bell program for this school year.
The Yondr pouch is a start-up in San Francisco with a mission to create phone-free spaces, something that resonated with Gelb.

"I really think it's about being present and engaging in the adult that's trying to teach you, your peers that might be in your small group. That's part of the main philosophy that we're trying to preach," he said.

Brad Friedman, another teacher at the school, said he was becoming concerned with excessive use of phones at school. He said he often saw students completely lost on their phones, some not socializing at all with other students.

This week, he's already seeing the difference.

"Everyone else was socializing and eating lunch together, that's what I wasn't seeing enough of when phone usage is at its worst," he said.
A senior at San Mateo High School Djelani Phillips-Diop said he definitely panicked at first when he heard he had to lock his phone.

"I panicked I guess last year when we had phones, I was using it every day," he said.

In case of emergency, every classroom has the unlocking device. Teachers still have access to their own cellphones and landlines.

"We've gotten all 1,700 students unlocked with a matter of minutes," said Gelb.

We spoke to four students who, despite their initial panic, agreed that a phone-free school experience has its benefits.
"I remember sophomore year, I tried to get my followers, checked my followers constantly," said Joshua Cervantes-Solorio, a senior student at San Mateo HS.

"You're constantly comparing yourself to other women on your feed and it definitely takes a toll on your self-image," said Lea Wadhams another senior at SMHS
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Source: ABC 11 News, Kris Reyes, 20 Aug 2019

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