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Date: Tue, 08 May 2001 08:49:45 -0700

To: (Recipient list suppressed)

From: JNewton at EMRNetwork <>

Subject: Cell site exposures - German EMF Research -Ecolog Institute

Conclusions from Ecolog Institut in Germany about radiation exposures from cell phones and base stations. Following that is an analysis from Dr. Neil Cherry, Ph.D., from Lincoln University in New Zealand.

The complete study so far is available only in German. Following (also as attachment) is the press release.

Cellular telephones and health

ECOLOG-study by order of the German T-Mobil refers to health risks

The ECOLOG-Institute, Hannover, has analysed and evaluated the present scientific level of knowledge on possible health effects of the electromagnetic fields emitted by cellular telephones and their base stations under the criterion of precautionary health protection. The results and recommendations of the comprehensive study carried out by order of the German T-Mobil, in which physicists, medical scientists, and biologists took part, are present now.


There are a number of scientific findings from investigations on sub-populations with an elevated exposition to high frequency electromagnetic fields and from animal experiments that have to be taken seriously. These findings point on a cancer-promoting effect of high frequency electromagnetic fields used by cellular telephone technology. Experiments on cell cultures yielded clear evidence for geno-toxic effects of these fields, like DNA breaks and damage to chromosomes, so that even a cancer-initiating effect cannot be excluded any longer. The findings that high frequency electromagnetic fields influence cell transformation, cell promotion and cell communication also point on a carcinogenic potential of the fields used for cellular telephony. Moreover disturbances of other cellular processes, like the synthesis of proteins and the control of cell functions by enzymes, have been demonstrated.

In numerous experiments on humans as on animals influences on the central nervous system were proven, which reach from neuro-chemical effects to modifications of the brain potentials and impairments of certain brain functions. The latter effects for instance have been demonstrated by animal experiments and e.g. showed up as deficits in the ability to learn simple tasks when exposed to the fields. From experiments with volunteers, who were exposed to the fields of mobile telephones, there is clear evidence for influences on certain cognitive functions. Possible risks for the brain also arise from an increased permeability of the blood-brain barrier to potentially harmful substances, observed in several experiments on animals exposed to mobile telephone fields.

The scientist at the ECOLOG-Institute also found some evidence for disturbances of the hormone and the immune system. High frequency electromagnetic fields cause stress reactions, showing up in an increased production of stress hormones in experimental animals and they lead to a reduction of the concentration of the hormone melatonin in the blood of exposed animals. The latter finding is important, because melatonin has a central control function for the hormone system and the diurnal biological rhythms and it is able to retard the development of certain tumours.


Dr. Peter Neitzke, co-ordinator of the working group at ECOLOG-institute:

"Our work focused on effects of the high frequency electromagnetic fields of cellular telephones on humans and animals, which occur at so small intensities that a thermal effect can be excluded. We critically checked the corresponding studies with respect to the applied methodology, completeness of the documentation, and strength of evidence of the results. During these checks it turned out that about 80 per cent of the papers published in scientific journals do not contribute anything to the evaluation of possible health risks due to the electromagnetic fields emitted by cellular telephones and their base stations. The remainder however, on which our assessment relies, is made so good and is in itself so consistent that we must take the findings referring to health risks seriously. In order to improve the protection of the public against the possibly harmful effects of the electromagnetic fields from cellular telephones and their base stations, we need much lower precautionary standards in Germany, as they already exist in some European neighbouring countries. The experiences from these countries show that precautionary health protection and the use of the cellular telephone technology are compatible."


The German safety standards for the frequencies used by cellular telephone systems range from 2 to 9 W/m2. These values only limit the warming up of the body due to the thermal effect of high frequency electromagnetic fields to a tolerable degree. From the point of view of the authors they are not suitable to exclude health risks for the public as pointed out in their study. They are therefore not compatible with the  principles of precautionary health protection. The ECOLOG-institute recommends not to exceed a precautionary standard of 0,01 W/m2 when siting cellular telephone base stations in the proximity of dwellings, schools, kindergartens, hospitals, and similarly sensitive uses. ECOLOG recommends also that the cellular telephone operators keep this standard on their own immediately and that they not wait for the ratification of the revised version of the federal immission control law.

Keeping the standard recommended for the neighbourhood of cellular telephone base stations is not possible with the direct use of mobile telephones at the present state of the art, but in the opinion of the scientists at the ECOLOG-institute a reduction to max. 0.5 W/m2 should be urgently aimed at. They see a special problem in the use of mobile telephones by children and young people, since their organism is still developing and thus particularly sensitive. On the other hand meanwhile many adolescents are regular users of mobile telephones. ECOLOG recommends to stop at least advertising in this sub-population. Additionally special efforts should be undertaken in order to reduce the electromagnetic exposition when telephoning by technical modifications at the telephones. Also by the use of head sets or guarding pockets the intensity reaching the head can be reduced.

For further information contact:

Dr. H.-Peter Neitzke

ECOLOG-Institute for social-ecological research

Bnieschlagstr. 26

D 30449 Hannover

Tel/Fax 49-511-92456-46/-48



Subject: Cell site exposure limits

Date: Tue, 8 May 2001 09:10:42 +1200

From: Neil Cherry <>

Reply-To: "" <>

Organization: Canterbury Regional Council

To: "''" <>

Dear Roy,

For genotoxic signals the "safe" level is zero mean exposure because the cells of the brain and body are damaged cell-by-cell. Any mistakes in DNA repairs can lead to cell death or cancer. This is why Dr Jerry Phillips found that cellphone radiation caused highly significant (p<0.0001) DNA repair (initiated by DNA damage) and DNA damage at an SAR of 0.0024 W/kg and Dr David De Pomerai at Nottingham showed that microwaves at 0.001 W/kg highly significantly (p<0.001) induced production of heat shock proteins, i.e. a non-thermal toxic shock response. The actual expose levels at which these genetic effects are shown are about 0.5 to 1.2 microWatt/sq cm. These are not safe levels, they are just experimental levels that show that at extremely low experimental levels genotoxic response occur - cell-by-cell. There is no safe threshold.

An acute human effect is sleep disturbance, a consequence of RF induced melatonin reduction. Sleeping with a cellphone on next to your bed, exposing your head to 50 microwatts/sq cm, causes sleep disturbance and altered EEG patterns. The University of Berne team carrying out the Schwarzenburg Study, found a causal relationship between shortwave radiation exposure and sleep disturbance (with measured melatonin reduction). The causal relationship was concluded because of dose-response relationships in two surveys, and experimentation involving turning the tower off for three days and altering the beam directions at other times. With an established biological mechanism and a multivariate analysis of confounders that we able to be eliminated, they concluded that there was a causal relationship. When the tower was turned off for three days the sleep disturbance improved in all study groups, including the reference Group C, that was exposed to measured field strengths (24 hr average) of 0.1 mA/m. This converts to 0.4 nW/cm sq. (n=nano). This value of 0.4 nW/cm sq is also not a safe level because it was causing significant sleep disturbance and a reasonable proportion of the population.

Hence RF/MW is genotoxic (from over 20 studies) and acutely neurologically active at extremely low exposure levels. Allowing for a small safety factor of 4, the risk reduction target could be 0.1 nW/cm sq.

For ELF fields Sam Milham's work is crucial. He shows that normal residential fields less than 1 mG have massively increased the incidence of early childhood Acute Lympoblastic Leukaemia (ALL). This is just an indicator cancer. If these fields produce ALL then they produce all other cancers that have risen in parallel with childhood ALL over the first half of the 20th century. Our New Zealand Ministry for the Environment recommend for air pollution that we set exposure guidelines for fine particulates at an achievable level and then regulate to keep below the guideline with being below 33 % of the guideline is good and 10% of the guideline is excellent. Hence I recommend, using Sam's work and reviewing the more than 10 other studies showing dose-response increases in childhood cancer as a function of residential magnetic field exposures, and the recent occupational studies from David Savitz's group on suicide, cardiac death and brain tumor, to set the guideline limit of the maximum allowable exposure of 1 mG and aim for living in an excellent field of less than 0.1 mG.

If we adopted these guidelines and strove to achieve them over the next 10 years, we would see a massive reduction in many health effects that are currently attributed to "unknown causes". Because of the frequency response of RF/MW fields as shown by the logarithmic reduction in dielectric constant with increasing carrier frequency, all the electrical residential and occupational effects found with ELF dominated exposures, will be produced at far higher rates by RF/MW exposures. The "wireless world" is a humanly created world that is a very dangerous place because people, animals and plants evolved over millions of years in a natural world with extremely low intensity ELF (Schumann Resonances) and RF/MW from space.

While we know that tgechnology has improved our lives in many ways, we also know that there are many ways to use it more responsibly, creating much lower exposures while still maintaining services. All of our telephone, fax, internet, radio and TV signals can be carried in fibre optic cables in urban areas, giving massive reductions in enviromental fields. Energy efficiency and passive solar designs can signficantly reduce the electrical requirements and fossil fuel requirements to heat homes in many parts of the world. A sound smart approach to technology can reduce ELF/RF/MW exposures, reduce air pollution and make a much more safer, cleaner and sustainable world.

Most of us have a vision of a clean, green world with a safe environment for our children. We have to recognise that we have inadvertantly created a dangerous world and reverse the trend so that our visions and dreams can come true.

Lets all light a candle, and use our scientific and technical knowledge, and the global communication available through this technology, to achieve our vision.

Neil Cherry

Here is a short background on Dr. Cherry available on the Lincoln University web site:

Dr. Cherry joined the staff of Lincoln in 1974, having completed a PhD in physics at the University of Canterbury, 2 years at McGill University in Montreal and one year at Auckland University.

Dr. Cherry established meteorology and climatology as a teaching and research discipline at Lincoln and built a national and international  profile for Lincoln's role in weather and climate research, particularly in wind and solar energy, climate change and seasonal forecasting, human  biometeorology and the effects of natural and artificial electromagnetic radiation on people's health.  Hence Dr. Cherry's teaching and research links the concern for global health to personal health.