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Understanding the Electromagnetic Spectrum
The newcomer to electromagnetic radiation is faced with a bewildering array of terms, acronyms and facts. This section tries to clarify and simplify the subject, then moves into more complex scientific information. For those who "just want the facts" it is important to recognize that you first need to be familiar with some basic terms and theories in physics, engineering and the life sciences.
This knowledge will orient you to the material and then this will all start to make more sense. Ask lots of questions of the industry representatives at the public meetings. Ask for visuals showing EMF or RF wave propagation at a particular site to see what the radiation pattern is and where it falls. If you are concerned about any particular EMF source - whether it is from antennas, cell phones, cordless phones, wireless laptops, iPhones, WiFi networks, radar, power lines or electrical appliances, keep in mind there are many variables to take into account when evaluating EMF exposure, including frequency, power level, duration of exposure, distance from the source and your health status.
Here are some links to sites which provide an orientation to the EMF spectrum and definition of basic terms.
Is the "jury still out" as to whether there are human health and environmental effects of EMFs?
Are cellular phones safe?
Do antennas pose a health risk?
Are electrical power lines safe?
Citizens sometimes have a hard time getting straight answers to these and related questions.
Scientific Reviews and Position Papers
August 31, 2007 Bioinitiative Report titled "A Rationale for a Biologically-based Public Exposure Standard for Electromagnetic Fields" (ELF and RF) states "Serious Public Health Concerns Raised Over Exposure to Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) from Powerlines and Cell Phones." Read the full report.
An international working group of scientists, researchers and public health policy professionals (The Bioinitiative Working Group) has released its report on electromagnetic fields (EMF) and health. They document serious scientific concerns about current limits regulating how much EMF is allowable from power lines, cell phones, and many other sources of EMF exposure in daily life. The report concludes the existing standards for public safety are inadequate to protect public health. www.bioinitiative.org
Additional Studies and Reviews
The late Dr. Ross Adey, M.D. –
Presentation by Dr. Ross Adey, U.C. Biochemist, UC Riverside of his published research, delivered February 4, 2000 at the Biolelectromagnetics Society meeting in Washington D.C. http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Adey_BEMS_presentation.doc
Dr. Martin Blank –
Dr. Martin Blank's statement presented at CWTI's Citizens Telecommunications Lobby Day, Washington DC June, 1999. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Blanks_statement.doc.
The Late Neil Cherry Ph.D's EMF Literature Reviews – –
1. EMR Reduces melatonin in animals and people, July 2000. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Cherry_Melatonin_Report.doc.
2. Health effects of electromagnetic radiation. Evidence for the Australian Senate Committee, September 2000. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Cherry_literature_review_9.2000.doc.
Dr. Cherry's most recent papers be purchased directly through http://www.neilcherry.com.
Magda Havas, Ph.D. –
1. "Analysis of health and environmental effects of proposed san Francisco Earthlink Wi-Fi network" submitted to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors May 31, 2007. Prepared at the request of the San Francisco Antenna-free Neighborhood Union (SNAFU).
2. "Biological effects of non-ionizing electromagnetic energy: A critical review of the reports by the US National Research Council and the US National Institute ofEnvironmental Health Sciences as they relate to the broad realm of EMF bioeffects", Environmental Review, Volume 8, 2000, pp173-253, National Research Press, Canada.
Dr. Gerard Hyland –
1. How Exposure to Mobile Phone Base-station Radiation can Adversely Affect Humans, November 2000. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Hylandreport11.2000.doc.
2. Potential Adverse Impacts of Mobile Telephony. February 2000. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Hyland200.doc.
3. Chart. Recent advances in Biophysics predict that adequately metabolising living organisms support coherent microwave activities, making them non-thermally sensitive to the frequency of ultra-weak external microwave radiation. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/CWTI.Hylandstudy200.doc.
4. How Exposure to GSM & TETRA Base-station Radiation Can Adversely Affect Humans, December 2002. http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/lai091302.htm.
Dr. Henry Lai –
1. "Research needs: Invivo (non human) experiments." Paper and power point presentation provided at the National Academy of Science’s hearing entitled "Identification of research needs relating to potential biological or adverse health effects of wireless communications devices", August 7-9, 2007, Washington D.C.
2. Paper for the Scientific Workshop "EMF-Scientific and legal Issues, Theory and Evidence of EMF Biological and Health Effects" in Catania, Sicily, Italy, September 13-14, 2002, organized by the Italian National Institute for Prevention and Work Safety. http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/lai091302.htm.
3. Memory and Behavior. Paper presented at "The Biological Effects, Health Consequences and Standards for Pulsed Radiofrequency Field", an international seminar sponsored by the International Commission on Nonionizing Radiation Protection and the World Health Organization, at the Ettoll Majorare, Centre for Scientific Culture, Erice, Sicily, Italy, November 21-25, 1999. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/Lai_WHO_paper.doc.
4. Genetic Effects of Nonionizing Electromagnetic Fields. Paper presented at the "International Workshop on Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation, Electromagnetic Fields and Chemical Toxic Agents" in Sinaia, Romania, October 2-6, 2001. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/Lai_Romania_Workshop.doc.
5. Neurological Effects of Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Radiation Relating to Wireless Communication Technology. Paper presented at the IBC-UK Conference: "Mobile Phones – Is there a Health Risk?" September 16-17, 1997 in Brussels, Belgium. Download in Word format, http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/Lai_Brussels_paper.doc.
Cell Phone Chronicles, Part 1 by John MacArthur, April 29, 2000. http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/chronicles.html
Is your cell phone really safe? http://infoventures.com/emf/top/spectrum.html
WHO EMF Research database http://www-nt.who.int/peh-emf/database.htm
British Cell Phone Safety Alert and An Interview with Robert O. Becker, M.D. by Linda Moulton Howe. http://www.wirelessimpacts.org/science/becker.html