The cu­mu­la­tive ef­fect of all types of ra­di­a­tion

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - OPINION - BY KALI SIM­MONDS Kali Sim­monds, ND, is a doc­tor of natur­o­pathic medicine who prac­tises in Char­lot­te­town.

We are liv­ing in an un­prece­dented time with our cu­mu­la­tive ex­po­sure to non-ion­iz­ing ra­di­a­tion from mi­crowave ovens, DECT cord­less phones, ubiq­ui­tous Wi-Fi cell phones, tablets, smart me­ters, cell tow­ers and so on. We have no way of yet know­ing the full ex­tent of long term health ef­fects.

Many stud­ies al­ready have as­so­ci­ated var­i­ous health ef­fects with ex­ces­sive ex­po­sure to non-ion­iz­ing ra­di­a­tion. The big ques­tion is what is ex­ces­sive ex­po­sure? Health Canada does ac­knowl­edge cell phones as pos­si­ble car­cino­gens and that more stud­ies are war­ranted. So, if more stud­ies are war­ranted, why forge ahead al­low­ing Wi-Fi in schools and cell tow­ers in residential ar­eas? This in­creases our ex­po­sure, when we still don't have a han­dle on po­ten­tial dam­age from our cur­rent ex­po­sure.

So far, stud­ies show­ing cor­re­la­tions be­tween this type of ra­di­a­tion and an in­crease in can­cer and in­fer­til­ity rates are very con­cern­ing. We should adopt the pre­cau­tion­ary prin­ci­ple as other coun­tries have done.

Use corded phones, re­heat food on a stove, use ear­bud, keep cell phones away from your body, charge them in other rooms, put the phone on speaker, text in­stead of call­ing, limit time on other de­vices us­ing Wi-Fi and use cases that pro­tect from ra­di­a­tion, use only hard wired in­ter­net, or at least shut down Wi-Fi at night when our bod­ies re­pair.

We can­not 'turn off ' a cell tower and so peo­ple are con­cerned about them be­ing close to their homes. Stud­ies over a 10 year pe­riod as­so­ci­ated higher can­cer rates in peo­ple whose homes were closer than 400m to a cell tower in Is­rael and Ger­many.

One par­tic­u­lar tower in Char­lot­te­town is now within me­ters of homes, in a more densely pop­u­lated residential area than any other cell tower in P.E.I. and is within 300m of an ele­men­tary school.

If telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pa­nies are good cor­po­rate cit­i­zens they should ex­plain the amount of ra­di­a­tion emit­ted from their cell tow­ers based on prox­im­ity to peo­ple and also how these lev­els com­pare to pre­cau­tion­ary stan­dards world­wide. Public con­cerns are triv­i­al­ized when cell tower emis­sions are com­pared to an 80 watt light­bulb.

In­dus­try Canada cur­rently has the ul­ti­mate say for the place­ment of all cell tow­ers. How­ever, there is in­her­ent con­flict when fed­eral gov­ern­ment re­ceives large pay­ments from telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pa­nies, while hold­ing the re­spon­si­bil­ity of safe­guard­ing the health of Cana­di­ans.

In Canada, Safety Code 6 de­scribes the lim­its of hu­man ex­po­sure to ra­dio fre­quency elec­tro­mag­netic energy in the fre­quency range of 3kHz-300GHz. How­ever, this limit has re­cently been called into ques­tion and is 100 times higher than the lim­its set by China, Italy, Rus­sia and Switzer­land. The Cana­dian Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion Jour­nal pub­lished an ar­ti­cle June 16, 2015 "Sci­en­tists de­cry Canada's out­dated Wi-Fi safety rules."

Tech­nol­ogy is evolv­ing much faster than main­stream health in­for­ma­tion sur­round­ing it's use. Cana­di­ans for Safe Tech­nol­ogy (C4ST) feel that there has been very lit­tle ac­knowl­edge­ment from Health Canada of the ev­i­dence of harm from ra­diofre­quency ra­di­a­tion.

Those con­cerned about the cu­mu­la­tive ef­fect of all types of ra­di­a­tion just don't want the re­gret of another sit­u­a­tion like thalido­mide, DDT, cig­a­rette smok­ing, DES, as­bestos, or some­thing worse.

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