There is growing concern in both developed and developing countries about the health hazards of living in a cellular world. Most of the latest studies from across the world have cautioned against the harmful effects of cellphone usage and living under the electromagnetic fields of mobile towers. Mobile towers are especially dangerous because they emit microwaves at a frequency of 1,900 MHz.
What happens when human population centres are flooded with massive amounts of powerful wireless microwave radiation? Nobody knows…yet. But we will soon. Because we are exposed to 100 million times more electromagnetic radiation than our grandparents were, and cell towers are making this figures grow exponentially. Some of the most powerful cell tower installations are on mountains and hilltops outside urban areas.
Alarmingly, these electromagnetic fields have been impacting humans, animals as well as the ecological balance. Studies of people and farm animals living around these towers point to chronic problems like stress and sleep disorders to birth defects, cancer and Alzheimer’s. A number of studies have also shown relationship between mobile telephone use and reduced sperm count and sperm quality.
Studies have demonstrated that artificial frequencies higher than 10 Hz can create stress and serious health problems. And, a mobile tower emits microwaves at 1,900 MHz! These higher energy waves can actually destroy chemical and molecular bonds, creating chaos in our basic biochemical structures. One of the problems is that this damage is cumulative in the tissues, and can take years, even decades, to show up. In the case of India, the issue has not yet become as alarming as in developed countries like the US, but India is fast heading towards such levels if the growth of mobile phone usage and other wireless gadgets are any indication. According to a report submitted by a 13-member committee constituted by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), there is no cause of alarm regarding possible illeffects on human health electromagnetic field (EMF) radiation from cellphone towers and cellphones because the limits adopted in India account for all biological effects of radiation. In fact, the limits set by India are much lower than the internationally adopted recommendations of the InternationalCommission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), the report says, which is really a welcome step.
Of course, we cannot escape completely from radiation in day-to-day life since it is all around us in various forms. In this issue of Safety Messenger, we have consciously chosen radiation safety as the focal theme on account of the advent of newer sources of radiation like the cellphones and cell towers, which make life more difficult on Earth.
Hope the various aspects of radiation discussed in the following pages will create more awareness about the gravity of the issue and possibly open the eyes of the authorities concerned to take necessary safety and preventive measures.