5G mobile phone technology a health risk due to high radiation levels experts warn

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5G technology. IMAGE/FREEPIK

By PATRICK MAYOYO

While it is not yet clear when Kenya plans to roll out the Fifth Generation mobile phone technology popularly known as 5G, experts are warning that it will expose users to health risks due to high levels of radiation.

And as a result, human rights activists and civil rights campaigners have launched efforts to stop the roll-out of 5G mobile phone sim cards in different countries.

The efforts to stop the 5G roll-out are being led by, Ms Claire Edwards, a former editor and trainer at United Nations who says scientific research shows that 5G is a health hazard and she has published an international appeal to stop 5G both on earth and in space www.5gspaceappeal.org

Ms Edwards’s appeal has attracted over 94,000 individual and group signatories from more than 170 countries and last year she warned the Secretary-General about the dangers of 5G during a meeting with UN staff, calling for a halt to its rollout at UN duty stations.

And the Planetary Association for Clean Energy (PACE) has submitted a memorandum to the UN revealing that allowable international “radiation limits will have to be increased by 30 to 40%” in order to make 5G deployment technologically feasible and calls 5G “an experiment on humanity that constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment” in violation of more than 15 international treaties and agreements.

In Taiwan, the country’s five wireless carriers say that they will not rush to roll out 5G services  in the absence of a profitable business model to sell the revolutionary technology, in spite of all the use cases that have been suggested.

Last year, in Switzerland, the government appointed a group of experts to probe the risks involved with introducing 5G, whose findings should be published by the end of 2019. The Swiss Federation of Doctors also urged caution, maintaining that “as long as there is no scientific proof that raising the radiation limits will not impact health, one must refrain from raising them.”

In Austria, after 5G was officially switched on in Vienna in November 2018, the first exposure to human-made electromagnetic fields (EMF) injuries caused by 5G were reported in January this year.

In the US, California Congresswoman Anna Eshoo and her colleagues, Jacquiline Speier, have introduced BillHR530 in the Congress to block the US Federal Communication Commission (FCC) cell tower pre-emption and preserve local government control and invalidate the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) 26 September 2018 ruling to accelerate the deployment of 5G small cells throughout the US.

US, California Congresswoman Anna Eshoo. PHOTO/COURTESY

And the European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) rates the potential effects on wildlife of increases in electromagnetic radiation from 5G a maximum 3 in terms of scale, urgency and interactions with other ecosystems and species, stating that “The lack of clear evidence to inform the development of exposure guidelines to 5G technology leaves open the possibility of unintended biological consequences”.

And in Switzerland, a study done in February this year shows that Radiation From Smartphones May Impair Memory In Teens. A research team at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute says that radio frequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) may negatively affect an adolescent’s brain from cellphone exposure, causing potentially harmful effects on his or her memory performance.

The authors say having the device close to one’s head lead to the greatest amount of radiation exposure.

In Netherlands, Utrecht City Council has decided unanimously to postpone decision-making on 4G and 5G infrastructure on new lamp posts until the risks to health and privacy are better understood.

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