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We are constantly exposed to electromagnetic radiation, which comes from a variety of sources, including mobile phones, television and radio broadcasts, and natural sources like sunlight. The most recent wireless smartphone technology, known as 5G, will be widely used for the first time in 2019. The high waves travel shorter distances through urban spaces, so 5G networks require more transmitter masts than previous technologies, positioned closer to ground level.
Main distinctions between 5G and other technologies
The progression of communications standards is represented by 5G. 5G will use higher frequencies up to some tens of GHz and around 3.5 GHz to offer improved performance. While body scanners and point-to-point radio communications are two other common uses of the higher frequencies outside of mobile phone networks, they are new to mobile networks.
5G uses higher frequency waves than earlier mobile networks, allowing more devices to have access to the internet at the same time and at faster speeds. 5G networks will make use of more base stations and connected items at these higher frequencies. Beam-forming antennas will also be used in 5G to more effectively guide signals towards the device being used as opposed to existing base station antennas, which spread the signal out in all directions.
Level of exposure
The current 3.5 GHz emission from 5G infrastructures is comparable to the 2.4 GHz exposure from current cell phone base stations. With the utilization of various rays from 5G antennas, radiation may vary depending on the users’ locations and usage. Given that 5G technology is still in its early stages of implementation, it is still unknown how much radiofrequency field exposure will alter.
Actions of WHO on 5G
As the new system is implemented and as more information about public health becomes available, WHO will assess the scientific evidence pertaining to potential health effects from exposure to 5G. The International Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) Project was started by World Health Organization (WHO) in 1996. The project studies the effects of contact with magnetic and electrical fields between 0 and 300 GHz on human health and provides national authorities with EMF radiation safety advice.
WHO supports more investigation into the potential long-term health effects of all facets of mobile communications. Priorities for related research are determined and promoted by the organization. In order to improve understanding of health and mobile communications, it also creates resources for the general public and encourages discussion among experts, scientists, authorities, governments, and the general public.
International exposure regulations
Guidelines for electromagnetic field exposure are produced by two international organizations. Currently, several nations follow the recommendations made by:
- The Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection International Commission,
- Through the International Committee on Electromagnetic Safety, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
These rules do not depend on any particular technology. They include the radio frequencies being discussed for 5G and extend up to 300 GHz.
The Fifth Generation of Mobile Technology is a super communication network, enabling faster internet speed and coverage. The 5G Technology is a significant and innovative step toward bringing out the full potential of the Internet of Things (IoT). The 5G Technology is capable of handling more devices and can support cutting-edge A.I. technology, Virtual Reality, etc. Another benefit of using the 5G technology is that it is energy-efficient, thereby using less battery and power from devices. The advantages of using 5G technology are obvious; however, it comes with many disadvantages. There have been increased concerns about health hazards and security regarding the 5G technology. Here are some of the significant disadvantages of using 5G technology:
Many studies have been conducted on the health effects of 5G on humans. However, the results have been inconsistent so far, and there is no evidence of major health hazards. It is to be noted that the radiation caused by phones, Wi-Fi, etc., has been proven to cause tissue heating in humans. However, the amount of tissue heating in humans due to these devices is significantly minimal to cause any health issues or concerns.
One of the major disadvantages of 5G is that they can only travel short distances. If physical obstructions such as trees, towers, or buildings are present on route, 5G frequency can be interrupted. This can slow the devices indoors, where the 5G signals may struggle to penetrate the walls. Telecom companies are extending the existing cell towers to increase the strength and broadcasting distance of the 5G signals. 5G Technology can also threaten aircraft safety due to the close frequency range in which they operate. You must have also noticed the recent news in which 5G technology has caused flight cancellations due to its interference with the onboard instruments.
One of the biggest concerns regarding 5G technology is Cybersecurity and the risk of hacking. 5G Technology has more routing points than the older technologies, making it difficult to do security check-ups and maintenance. The added speed and number of routing points will challenge the security systems. Another issue that adds to this concern is that many devices are manufactured without keeping security a priority. Connecting more of these devices to the grid adds to possible breach points, thus increasing the cyber threat.
High Initial Costs:
The road toward the development and implementation of 5G infrastructure is expensive. Much of the existing 5G technology is built on 4G infrastructure and network. However, it is to be noted that the 4G network upgrades can no longer support the increased traffic of 5G. Soon, the network operators will have to increase the infrastructure to cope with the growing traffic. There is the added burden of constant and continued maintenance costs to ensure high-speed connectivity.
Radiation is the energy emitted from a source in the form of light, energy, molecules, etc. Radiofrequency radiation is present in the low-energy band of the electromagnetic spectrum, such as radio waves and microwaves. They are non-ionizing radiations that emit lower energy when in use. However, when absorbed by the body in large amounts, they heat the body, which can result in potential tissue damage. Some sources of exposure to RF radiation are:
- Extreme UV rays from the sun
- Lightning strikes
- Radio and television signals
- Wireless networks, Bluetooth, and bright devices.
- Full-body wave scanners
Health Effects of RF radiation
Due to their job nature, some people are highly exposed to RF radiation than others. People who broadcast communication signals, manage towers, and maintain radars are at higher risk of radiation infection. According to WHO and IARC, prolonged use of wireless communications is carcinogenic to humans and can increase the risk of glioma and malignant brain cancer.
However, the extent of damage depends on the following factors;
- The sensitivity of affected tissues
- The length of and manner of RF exposure
- The type of radioactive isotopes involved in the radiation
- The characteristic of the person exposed to such radiations (like age, gender, and other medical conditions)
The higher the intensity of radiation, the higher the health risks. However, at lower powers, the body can repair its damaged cells and tissues, thus, reducing the risk factors.
Acute health effects of RF radiation
When a person is exposed to RF for an extended period, the following health effects can be administered:
- Vomiting and nausea
- Redness of skin
- Radiation burns
- Acute radiation syndrome
- Hair loss
- In extreme conditions, death
Using mobiles and other wireless devices does not lead to the development of acute symptoms. However, people working in nuclear power plants and those under direct harmful RF radiation are at higher risk of developing such symptoms.
Many studies have failed to find the link between exposure to low doses of RF radiation and tumor development in humans and animals.
Protection from RF radiation
It is inevitable to run away entirely from radiation, as it is always in the backdrop. But fortunately, there are specific ways by which we can reduce our exposure to this harmful radiation, which might decrease its harmful effects on our bodies.
One of the primary ways is to understand and educate about the radiation protection principles guided by WHO.
- Time: For anyone exposed to radiation other than one in the background, it is essential to reduce the time of exposure, which can significantly reduce its effectiveness.
- Distance: The radiation dose reduces as you move further away from the source.
- Shielding: Lead, concrete, and water are the primary shielding sources from harmful radiations like RF, X-rays, and gamma rays.
The fifth generation mobile technology is rolling out to most cell phones in today’s technological world to deliver high-speed internet and wireless connections to enhance user experience and make life easier. However, concerns about 5 G technologies have surfaced on the internet since its release.
The experts have considered this mass concern and have provided valuable information. In this article, we will decode whether 5G is making you sick or is it just a myth!
What exactly is 5G?
The fifth generation network is the latest cellular network, developed in 2019, to transmit data between mobile and Bluetooth devices. The fast speed of the network is due to its utilization of higher frequencies through wireless networks. They mainly make use of radiofrequency and electromagnetic radiation to deliver their services. The electromagnetic frequencies produce an EMF (electromagnetic field) believed to be harmful to the users. Hence, this has caused concerns about health with the prolonged use of 5G networks.
5G Radiation and EMF Waves
Electromagnetic fields are of two types:
- Non-ionizing EMF is radiated by Bluetooth devices, power lines, microwaves, computers, phones, etc. They impart low levels of radiation when in use.
- Ionizing EMF is stronger atmospheric radiation mainly imparted by X-ray machines and sun rays.
According to experts like Collins, people are much more likely to associate with diseases like cancer when constantly exposed to ionizing EMF.
However, it is essential to know that 5G workers are in the higher spectrum of the EM waves, where the frequency starts from 3.5GHz. Before the discovery of 5G networks, mobile networks did not work in these radio spectrums.
According to World Health Organization, although limited studies are performed on the effects of 5G on humans, the results of electromagnetic fields are cause for concern as they lead to:
- Tissue heating
- Hampering cognitive functions
- Skin and other types of cancer
Health concerns over 5G
Since 5G is a newly built technology, the health risks caused by 5G networks are still under study due to a lack of enough scientific analysis. But, according to a 2021 study, the genetic effects of EMF generally depend on various factors like exposure duration, intensity, frequency of use, etc. Nevertheless, the results were consistent with EMF’s genetic damage to human tissues. Today, over 3,500 physicians from various fields have jointly voted against the use of 5G technologies, which might cause neurological disorders in their users.
Even though the FDA and WHO declare 5G connections safe, many experts disagree with their early conclusions.
Meantime, some myths about 5G networks are debunked by experts, that include:
- 5G connections cause COVID-19
- All COVID-19 vaccines have 5G microchips
- One-time use of 5G network causes cancer
- 5G causes migraines, headaches, and dizziness
5G is beneficial to humankind more than we can imagine. Currently, there is no evidence for the harmful effects of 5G on humans or animals. However, the EMF produced by these networks has mixed results.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) is considered one of the foremost authorities on all things wireless, including wireless safety. For years, this large group of scientists and industry professionals have touted the safety of wireless technology that is compliant with current safety standards. However they may be changing their tune. Several recent reports from the IEEE have called into question the safety of wireless radiation, specifically looking at the cumulative effect of multiple wireless devices that most people now face.
The conclusion of this report states:
“People should be made aware that the EMR from using day to day cellular, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices are harmful to human health. The levels of radiation observed in most cases such as phone calls, internet browsing on laptops and smartphones, using wireless routers and hotspots, Bluetooth smartwatches and smartphones are unsafe when compared with radiations limits determined by medical bodies. According to the current medical literature, various adverse health effects from exposure to RF EMR have been well documented.”
This is a very damning conclusion but well warranted given the vast amount if scientific literature that demonstrates various negative effects of wireless radiation. The FCC and wireless industry can not hide the truth forever!
Sacramento is one of the first cities in the entire world to receive 5G technology. The City signed a public-private partnership with Verizon in 2017. This contract was not taken through the usual public process and has been heavily criticized as a bad deal for Sacramento. The 5G roll-out began in October of 2018. Since then, roughly 600 “small cell” antennas have been installed, most commonly on top of light poles.
Approximately only 10% of Sacramento has 5G coverage meaning, many, many more antennas will be installed, especially when you consider other carriers will also want to install their antenna networks.
The main problem with the antennas is that they emit pulsed, data modulated, microwave radiation all day, every day. Anyone living near the antennas will be exposed to this radiation inside their home on a continuous basis, whether they have 5G service or not. Because these antennas are being installed lower to the ground and closer to people’s homes than previous generation antennas, exposure from the small cells is MANY times higher than exposure from previous generation antennas, even higher than exposure from cell phones and wireless routers which are typically the greatest sources of microwave radiation exposure.
The only assurance of safety we have been given is that exposure from the antennas will likely be under the FCC safety limit. However, the FCC safety limits are over 20 years old and based entirely on a thermal model for damage, meaning if the radiation source is not literally cooking you, it is assumed safe. Interference with cell function or brain function, genetic damage, even cancer are not considered at all by the FCC safety limit. This is best explained in a 2002 letter from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which states “the generalization by many that the [FCC] guidelines protect human beings from harm by any or all mechanisms is not justified.”
In June of 2017 the city of Sacramento signed a public-private partnership agreement with Verizon to make Sacramento one of the first 5G cities in the world. 5G had not even been clearly defined at the time and there is no possible way that the city knew exactly what it was getting with this deal.
In my opinion, and according to a number of wireless experts, the City of Sacramento got hoodwinked by Verizon; tricked into signing over access to their valuable public rights of way in exchange for Verizon building out their antenna network that Verizon is financially incentivized to build.
The agreement contains a number of alarming details. Page two shows that no environmental considerations were made in this agreement, meaning the City did not consider health effects from the antennas at all. Page seven shows that the city agreed to “streamline” the permitting and installation of the antennas. This is particularly relevant because it shows that the City is contractually obligated NOT to object to the placement of any antenna, an action that many other cities have taken in order to protect residents from the dangers of these antennas.
Throughout the agreement are sections about collecting and storing data. That means these antennas will be collecting and storing data from the wireless devices they are communicating with; the data of Sacramento residents. We were never informed about or consented to this data collection. It seems obvious that this is the primary reason Verizon is willing to spend hundreds of million of dollars building out this infrastructure even though no one is purchasing 5G service. Verizon will make significantly more money collecting and selling user data, the hot commodity of the twenty first century.
Perhaps most importantly, this agreement was NOT taken through the usual public participation process. It was done quickly and quietly, with legally dubious stealth. This means that the city signed away the rights to valuable public owned infrastructure, payed for by our tax dollars, AND signed us up to be data mined, jeopardizing our privacy and security, all without our knowledge or consent. Even worse, they are allowing Verizon to expose Sacramento residents to UNPRECEDENTED levels of pulsed, data modulated microwave radiation, inside our homes and against our will. This agreement with Verizon is a direct attack on our health and our rights and Sacramento residents should be up in arms!
I am reaching out to you about the 5G expansion that is currently happening across the country. I do not consent to having a cell antenna installed near my home, period.
5G will require roughly one million new cell antennas, installed closer than ever to the ground and to people’s homes. This will result in UNPRECEDENTED levels of microwave radiation exposure, all day, every day. This is not speculation, this is basic physics and PROVEN by a pilot study commissioned by the City of Sacramento, one of the first 5G test cities.
This type of radiation is classified as a possible carcinogen by the World health Organization and is proven to cause a number of other negative health effects at exposure levels far below current FCC safety limits. There has been ZERO long term safety testing on 5G technology.
The only assurance of safety given to the public is that exposure from these antennas will likely be under the FCC safety limit. However, the FCC safety limit only protects against the thermal effects of microwave radiation and is insufficient for preventing biological harm.
The negative effect of cell antennas on property values and home salability have been well established by the realtor industry. If a cell antenna is installed near my home, I will incur negative financial consequences and you will be responsible for those consequences.
I do not consent to having a cell antenna installed near my home. I do not consent to being irradiated inside my home by a “small” cell facility. I do not consent to having data from my wireless devices collected, stored, or sold by any telecommunications company, or government entity, resulting from interactions with the small cell facilities. I do not consent to having my home devalued by a small cell facility. If a small cell facility is installed near my home, you are violating my constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property.
I am asking you to research this issue and take all actions within your power to stop the installation of cell antennas in residential neighborhoods. As my elected representative, you have a sworn duty to uphold the constitution and protect my rights.
Thank you for reading this correspondence.
Well…my fears were confirmed. On April 7th, 2020 Sacramento City Council held an online City Council meeting to approve the updated telecommunications ordinance and move forward with 4G and 5G small cell installations in Sacramento.
After the February 4th meeting , I fully expected this to be the outcome. However, I would not have guessed that the decision would be made without giving the public another opportunity to be heard on the issue. The meeting was held without the public being able to attend. Apparently some comments had been submitted online but those comments were NOT read into the public record prior to the item being voted on. In the video, at 1:00:30, Mayor Steinberg acknowledges that he had NOT read the public comments before Council voted on the issue. This shows that the council had already made up their mind on the issue and input from the public was literally meaningless despite us fighting this issue for over a year. It is also likely a violation of the Brown Act.
I personally was unaware that City Council meetings were still taking place or of my opportunity to participate on this agenda item. I am quite sure City Council knows where I stand on the issue, but I think it is incredibly insulting and down right slimy for Council to take action on such a contentious issue without proper engagement from the public.
I wrote an email to council expressing my disgust with their decision to move forward with 5G deployment during this already chaotic time. I mention the increase in number of people linking 5G to coronavirus in the past weeks. This has resulted in a number of attacks on cell antennas, particularly in the U.K.
With all the fear and conspiracy theories floating around about 5G and coronavirus, transparency in government actions regarding these topics is more important than ever. Sacramento City’s decision to move forward with their 5G roll-out in a stealthy manner without public engagement was irresponsible and lends credibility to the argument of those claiming that this pandemic is being used fast track 5G deployment.