Cell towers likely sources of radiation, disease: Report
Study For DoT Says India Should Tighten Norms
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Mumbai: Cellphone operators have long denied their transmitting towers atop buildings or on highways have any adverse bearing on the health of humans or animals, despite several studies across the world concluding the contrary. Now a report for the Department of Telecommunication by a faculty of the Indian Institute of Technology, Powai, reinforces what scientists have long held—that areas around cellphone towers are highradiation and consequently highrisk zones. Moreover, it recommends that ndia, which has very “relaxed radiation norms’’, must raise the safety bar.
Girish Kumar, professor, electrical engineering department of the Powai institute, who visited rooftops of several buildings and measured radiation on places with cell towers mounted, said: “These towers transmit radiation 24x7, so people living nearby will receive 10,000 to 10,000,000 times stronger signal than required for mobile communication. In India, crores of people reside in these hig radiation zones.’’
Kumar noted the cell phone industry was becoming “another cigarette industry, which for long kept claiming smoking is not harmful. In fact, cellphone/tower radiation is worse than smoking as one cannot see it or smell it, and its effect on health is noted after a long period of exposure.
Unfortunately, all of us are absorbing this slow poison unknowingly.” For instance, Kumar visited the apartment of a lady detected with cancer a year after a cellphone tower was installed in the vicinity. A hand-held broadband radiation monitoring device, taken near the windows, detected radiation levels were around 0.007069 W/m2. India has adopted a radiation norm of 4.7 W/m2, but the study noted serious health effects at as low a level of 0.0001 W/m2. Though India adheres to the radiation density limit set by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), Kumar observed Indians faced an added threat: radiation from multiple towers. “One should know the actual radiation pattern (unfortunately not made public) to calculate exact radiation density at a point,’’ he noted. One of the first steps he recommended was tightening radiation norms and reducing number of towers. Many countries in the world have adopted much stricter maximum radiation density values of 0.001 to 0.24 W/m2.
Use of mobile phones for more than years poses a risk of brain cancer. Children and teenagers are five times more susceptible as their brain is not fully developed and radiation penetration is much deeper Infertility Studies confirm cell phone radiation can
drastically affect male fertility. Studies have found 30% sperm decrease in intensive mobile phone users, in addition to damage of sperms Neurodegenerative Diseases
People living near mobile phone base stations are also at risk of developing neuropsychiatric problems as headache, memory loss, nausea, dizziness, tremors, muscle spasms, numbness, tingling, altered reflexes, muscle and joint paint, leg/foot pain, depression, and sleep disturbance. More severe reactions include seizures, paralysis, psychosis and stroke
Radiation from cell towers and mobile phones affects human skin. It can result in an increase in mast cells, leading to the clinical symptoms of itch, pain, edema and erythema. It also may be instrumental in higher concentration of the transtyretin protein, which has an important role in causing nervous diseases like Alzheimers
Interference With Other Gadgets
Radio frequency exposure from cellular phone base antennas and mobiles can affect patients with pacemakers, implantable cardiovascular defibrillators and impulse generators Melatonin Reduction
Melatonin, a vital neurohormone, regulates our circadian rhythm. Studies with animals show a reduction in melatonin levels following radio frequency radiation exposure from cell phones and cell towers. Turning off transmitters resulted in a significant increased
melatonin levels within few days
Ear & Eye Damage
Radiation emitted by mobiles may damage the delicate workings of the inner ear, and longterm and intensive use for more than four years and for longer than 30 minutes a day creates high risk of irreversible hearing loss. Frequent use of mobiles can also damage the visual system
Use of handsets before going to bed delays and reduces sleep, and causes headaches, confusion and depression. The findings are especially alarming for children and teenagers as they use cell phones at night and keep the phone next to their head, it may lead to mood and personality changes, depression, lack of concentration and poor
ON THE SPOT
At a farmhouse near Delhi-Gurgaon toll naka, with 4 cell towers, the owner said output of most fruit trees drastically reduced in two years Residents of Usha Kiran, Carmichael Rd, alleged 3 cell towers on neighbouring Vijay Apts, subject them to maximum radiation
At Khar bridge, power density and radiation was way above the permissible limits.