The Nation journalists, Mark Hertsgaard and Mark Dowie, have written a modern powerful expose of industry influence in the science of wireless safety that closely resembles tobacco tactics. Their article, How Big Wireless Made Us Think That Cell Phones Are Safe: A Special Investigation is an in-depth investigation highlighting the twists and turns of the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) as it suppressed the results of its own research.
A social media firestorm has erupted to protest the introduction of Facebook’s new Messenger Kids App. The company states that the app, designed for children ages 6 to 12, allows them to connect with family and friends from their tablet or smartphone. Similar to Snapchat, kids can create their own videos and decorate photos. The message however does not disappear and parents can approve the contact list.
Is Wireless Access Being Oversold?
With a tsunami of cell tower infrastructure planned for wireless telecommunications expansion, including 5G and driverless cars, there has been little discussion of the access, reliability, privacy, health and environmental benefits of maintaining and expanding our current sophisticated wired communications system. This novel and important program will feature the costs and benefits of our landlines intermixed with other innovative wired and cable systems.
Two Apple investors have written an open letter to ask the company to address the negative impacts of digital technology on children’s development stating, “There is a growing body of evidence that, for at least some of the most frequent young users, this may be having unintentional negative consequences.”
In a newly released large prospective study headed by Kaiser perinatal epidemiologist Dr. De-Kun Li, researchers found a significant association between high magnetic field exposures from devices emitting non-ionizing radiation exposure and miscarriage risk.
On December 13, 2017 the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Released its first guidelines on “How to Reduce Exposure to Radiofrequency Radiation for Cell Phones” CDPH Press Release Dec 13, 2017 . The CDPH notes that cell phone use is increasing dramatically and thus this was an important time to release it.
Dr. Lennart Hardell has completed an update analyzing the brain tumor case-control studies from 2010 to 2017 and concluded the evidence has strengthened the association between cell phone use and brain tumors on the same side of the head.
The last veto Governor Brown made just before midnight Oct 15, 2017 was that of SB649 (Hueso) which would have fast tracked permitting of small cell towers throughout cities in California. SB649 was opposed by the League of Cities and County Associations as it would essentially force cites to comply with telecommunications placement of cell towers on utility poles owned by the public, add battery back-up cabinets (with gas generators as needed) on every block and with a limit on what cities could charge for “renting” the poles.
August 22, 2017:
Dr. Beatrice Golomb, UC San Diego researcher and professor of Medicine, wrote a strong letter with over 300 references to California Legislators urging them to vote no on SB649. This bill aims to streamline placement of “small cell” wireless antenna on utility poles owned by the city without permits, public input or ability for cities to receive fair market rent from telecommunications companies. Dr. Golomb notes that it is not only removing local government control but also disregards consideration of the health and safety of the public.