Saturday, March 20, 2010

Invisible Dangers of Cell Phone Radiation

Please see the following link

Rules w.r.t. erection of mobile towers on top of residential buildings

Rules w.r.t. erection of mobile towers on top of residential buildings

Fri, March 12, 2010 6:53:32 PM

From: Manoj Shivram Londhe

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Respected Sir,

This is in reference to news clipping in Mumbai Mirror "Strong Signal on Cell Tower Hazard" dated 12.03.2010.

Sir attaching for your kind perusal rules already "IN PLACE" in Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, New Delhi & chandigarh. We request you to implement these rules at the earliest. Committee can come out with its findings later on.

Sir, I further wish to bring to your kind notice that, Radio frequencies emitted by the Cell phone towers are "Non-ionising" radiations & hence are not a subject of research for BARC. These frequencies are a subject matter of "TRAI" (Telecom regulatory authority of India) and Wireless communications.

Sir, as per international papers, these radiations affect hormonal system, which further boils down to various cancers. Hence I request you to take "Endocrinologist" & "Oncologist" on the committee.

Sir, I on behalf of "Mobile Tower grievance forum" request you, that we should be given a chance when Govt of Maharashtra will do interaction with public.

I hope my requests would be given due consideration.

Manoj Londhe

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Government appoints expert committee to suggest new norms

Government wakes up to health risks posed by mobile phone towers on residential buildings, appoints expert committee to

suggest new norms


Under mounting pressure from health conscious citizens and members in the Assembly, the state government’s health department has finally appointed a high-power committee to investigate the health hazards posed by cellphone towers on top of residential buildings. The committee, which includes experts and scientists from Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, is expected to submit a report to the government in three months, spelling out new norms for such installations. There will also be interactions with the public and service providers for inputs.

The panellists also include a radiologist and a neuro-physician from Tata Hospital, additional chief secretary (health services), principal secretary (urban development department) and secretaries (environment department, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board and Public Works Department).

State Health Minister Suresh Shetty confirmed the development, saying, “We met on Thursday to discuss the probable health hazards caused by cellphone towers. Our expert committee will submit a report soon and we will also examine the telecom authorities’ view on this issue.” A Mirror survey of 2008 had measured electromagnetic radiation

(EMR) levels emitted by cell towers in the city (see box). The results had shown alarming levels of radiation which could lead to several physical disorders. However, the issue of installing cell towers remains a contentious one, with service providers offering generous compensation to housing societies in lieu of the space. Says the resident of a housing society at Tardeo which recently had a tower installed for an annual rent of Rs 4.5 lakh: “This money goes towards the creation of a corpus.

Residents eventually don't have to pay any maintenance. Why will we not allow it?”

In the absence of concrete, actionable data on the health risks posed by the electromagnetic waves emitted from these towers, it is cell service providers who are allegedly taking advantage of the information lacunae -- a reason why there are at least 1,000 cellphone towers on residential buildings across the city.

Dr R K Shegaonkar, vice chancellor and former deputy director, IIT Mumbai, said, “While some of the studies say the waves are harmful others contradict them. At the moment here are no conclusive reports.

Health risks depend on the number of times one is exposed to these rays, the length of the rays and other parameters. While it is true that some medical reports confirm the harmful effects of the radiation, telecommunication companies refute the claims.”

Dr Anil Pachnekar of the Indian Medical Association and a Central Working Committee member mentioned “heaviness, headache, dehydration” as some of the immediate effects of exposure to cell tower radiation, adding that more such evidence would emerge in the coming days after the ongoing research worldwide came to a conclusion.

A year ago, JJ Hospital had turned down an offer from cell service providers to install towers inside the 43-acre campus (see box). The refusal had come after the Dean set up a three-member expert committee, which found the health risks far too many to be ignored.

Though the contents of the report have remained confidential, the decision to keep out the towers from the hospital was damning enough.

DoT wants cell towers to be quakeresistant

DoT wants cell towers to be quakeresistant

Amrita Nair-Ghaswalla

Mumbai: In a bid to ensure that essential services like telecommunication

do not break down during natural calamities, the Department of

Telecommunication (DoT) has brought out a draft policy on mobile

towers and has asked cellular service providers to adhere to certain

norms while constructing new towers.

Saying that the towers would have to be earthquake resistant, DoT has

specified that the design, fabrication and use of material should conform

to the standards set by Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). Since there

was large-scale damage when the cyclone struck Orissa and even during

the Bhuj quake, the draft telecom policy paper states that there is an

urgent need to ensure that telecommunication services are not disrupted

in such disasters.

“The towers are erected in residential areas and on lease-rented

buildings that are spread all over towns and cities,’’ a senior DoT official

told TOI, on the condition of anonymity. “The buildings over which the

towers are erected are not analysed for the associated risk of earthquake

and appropriate retrofit measures are not taken,’’ the official added,

alleging that “in some cases the towers are constructed even without

taking requisite permission from the concerned authority.’’

Addressing health issues, the draft tower policy has asked telcos to

follow international standards to cut down on radiation. In a bid to check

radiation from mobile towers, telcos have been asked to provide

certification of antenna emission levels.

“Cellular service providers shall ensure compliance of the International

Commission for Non-ionizing Radiation Protection and other

environmental standards,’’ notes the draft tower policy. It has also

outlined ways to encourage alternate sources of energy for telecom

towers to reduce pollution.

Natural disasters and seismic quakes are not the only cause for a break

in communication. Telecom services were recently disrupted in Noida,


Confirming to TOI that a draft policy has been in the works ever since

the standoff between telcos and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi in

February, the DoT official said several considerations had been taken into

cognizance for future projections of telecom tower requirements.

The telecom draft policy, which is in the possession of TOI, has

enumerated that since the BIS code has been revised, the tower design,

fabrication, material and the erection of towers shall conform to relevant

BIS provisions in the relevant areas.

Cellular service providers have been asked to set up mobile towers in

non-residential areas and on multi-storied group housing buildings. They

have been asked to get towers in seismic zones inspected by structural

engineers to ensure that they are compliant with revised BIS codes.

Follow BIS norms

Saying that the towers would have to be earthquake resistant, DoT has

specified that the design, fabrication and material should conform to the

standards of the Bureau of Indian Standards

The draft policy has asked telcos to follow international standards to cut

down on radiation and provide certification of antenna emission levels 08/03/2010

Mobile Towers --Health Hazards

Subject: Mobile Towers --Health Hazards--Mail form A.M.JOSHI

This is 2008 case but forwarding to you for refreshing the subject.

--A.M. JOSHI--


Mobile towers a health hazard SC?

The Supreme Court sought responses from the Centre and the telecom department on a PIL describing the communication towers — put up at prominent locations by mobile phone service providers — as health hazards, because they emit electromagnetic radiation.

Webindia 123 .com

The Supreme Court has sought a response from the Centre and the Telecommunication Department on a PIL regarding the health hazards caused by electromagnetic radiations emitted by cell phone towers, and seeking laying down of guidelines for erecting communication towers by cellular companies to provide interconnectivity.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice Y K Sabharwal and Justices C K Thakker and R V Raveendran issued notices to a host of ministries including home, defence, communications and information and broadcasting on the PIL filed by an NGO, Karma Jyot Seva Trust.

The petitioner NGO highlighting the hazardous effect of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiations emitted by cell phone towers, microwave ovens, mobile phones, TV remotes etc. It stressed on the fact that electronic equipment manufactured and offered in the Indian market are not shielded against such radiations while in western countries there are proper guidelines for the same.

In case of stringent laws introduced, the manufacturers of microwave ovens, television sets, computers, cell phones and service will have to abide by the certain laws at manufacturing or installation level.

Apart from new dimensions in the telecom and electronic goods industry, there will be enormous business opportunity in the field of detecting and arresting such non ionizing radiation while so far India has systems, services, processes and products only to control ionizing radiations.

Many foreign countries follow strict guidelines and laws laid down by their governments to protect citizens from objectionable levels of radiation emitted by electronic gadgets, communication towers, mobile phones etc. In fact all international brands adhere to these laws when supplying products to these countries but when bringing their products to India they ignore such precautions. Excess exposure to electromagnetic waves can cause cancer as well as neurological, respiratory, heart and eye problems.

Internationally, Agencies like WHO have given a safety range of 1-10 Micro watt/m2 as the emission level. India however, does not follow these guidelines and many places have radiation emission as high as 7000 microwatt/m2

Measured RF levels in New Delhi

1.Local Shopping Center Madan Giri Near Main Road 3500

2.Modi Tower Nehru PlaceFront Side 5500

3.TATA Indicom, Mathura RoadEntrance Gate 4450

4.Near Body SPA, M-53 GK1,Near Entrance Gate 7620

5.Bhikaji Cama Place, Near Hyatt HotelEntrance Gate 46006.

6.Deepali Building Nehru Palace Front Side 4900

7.VSNL Main road Near GK1, Outer Ring Road Front Road 5600 (ANI)

Monday, March 15, 2010

Himachal to crackdown on illegal mobile towers

Himachal to crackdown on illegal mobile towers

In Shimla town alone, 118 towers have been installed by telecom service providers, of which only 16 were installed with permission

Published on 03/10/2010 - 12:45:55 PM

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh government will crackdown on telecom operators for the illegal and unregulated construction of mobile phone towers in the state.

"We will take action against the mobile phone companies for installing towers without the government's permission and without following the procedure and guidelines framed by the government," Town and Country

Planning Minister Mahinder Singh said during the Question Hour in the State Assembly.

He said in Shimla town alone, 118 towers have been installed by telecom service providers, of which only 16 were installed with permission.

"As many as 99 towers have been installed without the permission of authorities concerned. In some of the cases, the companies have sought permission after installing the towers," he said in reply to a question of  Congress legislator Kaul Singh Thakur.

Under the guidelines, mobile service providers have to take clearances from the government before installing a tower.

"The government framed a policy in 2006 in which guidelines, rules and regulations have been framed for installing a tower. No tower would be installed within 100 metre radius of hospitals and educational institutes," the minister said. However, Thakur expressed concern that the towers installed in residential areas have become a health hazard.

Telecom giants Airtel, BSNL, Idea-Spice, Aircel, Vodafone and S. Tel are among the telecom players in Himachal Pradesh.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mobile towers threaten honey bees in Kerala: Study - By - PTI

Mobile towers threaten honey bees in Kerala: Study

By - PTI

As in the case of the house sparrows, mobile towers are posing a serious threat to honey bees, hitting apiculture, which is a source of additional income to rural folk across Kerala, says a study.

Electromagnetic radiation from the mobile towers and cell phones were potent to kill worker bees that go out to collect nectar from flowers, suggests a study by environmentalist and Reader in Zoology, Dr Sainudeen Pattazhy.

Considering the recent plunge in beehive population reported from different parts of Kerala, the trend, if remedial measures are not taken, could even wipe out bees from Kerala within a decade, Pattazhy, who teaches in SN College at Punalur in Kollam district said.

In one of his experiments he found that when a mobile phone was kept near a beehive it resulted in collapse of the colony in five to 10 days, with the worker bees failing to return home, leaving the hives with just queens, eggs and hive-bound immature bees.

Electromagnetic waves emitted by towers were strong enough to cripple the "navigational skills" of the worker bees, who play a vital role in sustaining bee colonies, he said.

A few months ago, a study conducted by a team of environmentalists led by Pattazhy in different spots in Kollam district in Kerala, had found that radiation from mobile towers threatened the very existence of home sparrow, which live in colonies close to human habitats even in urban areas.

Parackal Chacko, a bee keeper from Wayanad, said it was true that there had been mass destruction of bee hives in the area but it was thought to be due to climatic shifts and attack by hostile insects and pests. "The angle that mobile towers could be a source of threat should be probed," he said.

Pattazhy, however, said though it required detailed study, it could reasonably be understood that insects and smaller animals were "easily penetrated" by microwaves radiated by mobile towers and phones.He claimed to have seen changes in the behavioural pattern of bees when they make hives close to mobile towers.

Besides helping farmers earn an additional income through honey and bee-wax, honeybees do great service in pollinating flowers and plants, a vital process that sustains vegetation.

In a colony of an average size,there would be about 20,000 to 31,000 bees comprising a queen and a few hundred drones. But 90 per cent of the population is made up of the workers.

Recently a sharp decline has been noticed in commercial bee population in Kerala. The official explanation has been that this happens as bees are susceptible to diseases and fall prey to attacks by wasps, ants, and wax moth and that constant vigilance on the part of the bee keepers can check it.

The farmers have also complained that introduction of exotic varieties of bees to promote apiculture have also done harm as they are unsuitable to climatic conditions of the area.

Also, bees and other insects have survived and evolved complex immune system over a span of millions of years. "Considering this, it is vital to ponder as to why they suddenly die out. Naturally, the question would point to human-made factors, Pattazhy said.

The vanished bees are never found, but die far from home. Bee keepers said several hives have been abruptly abandoned.

If towers and mobile phones further increase, honeybees might even be wiped out in 10 years due to bio active radiation, causing significant alternation in the physiological function of living organisms.

"The need of the hour is to check unscientific proliferation of mobile towers and promote more studies and come out with practical solutions", Pattazhy added.

In Kerala there are about six lakh bee hives and 1 to 1.25 lakh people are engaged in apiculture,mostly as an allied activity. A single hive can yield four to five kg of honey.=