5G responsibility and UK Government

12 March 2019

Dear Department for Culture, Digital, Media and Sport,

Thank you for your reply to my second email, where I express continued serious concerns about the roll-out of 5G Wireless Technology without Due Diligence, i.e without any Strategic Health or Environmental Impact Assessments. My concerns remain. Kindly see below for my reply to your comments:

Thank you for your correspondence of 10 February to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), regarding the potential health and environmental impacts of 5G. I am replying as a member of the Ministerial Support Team.

The vast majority of investment in 5G will be made by the private sector; however the government has taken a proactive approach towards funding research and trials of 5G networks. The government’s primary role will be to create a policy and regulatory environment which will ensure the right conditions for the development and support the deployment of 5G networks.

How can the Government decide to support the deployment of 5G networks when it has not been comprehensively concluded that it is safe to deploy? Where are the Strategic Health and Environmental Impact Assessments? And why is there no clear, updated, policy on how to protect UK citizens against undue harm from untested pulsed millimeter wave radiation at close proximity, which even the Industry – and Insurance Companies – themselves admit has not been proven safe and is uninsurable? Kindly see: https://principia-scientific.org/lloyds-insurers-refuse-to-cover-5g-wi-fi-illnesses/ and https://ehtrust.org/wp-content/uploads/Telecom-10-K-Liability-and-Insurance-Companies-Slides-EHT-6-2016.pdf

A considerable amount of research has been carried out on radio waves, and the government anticipates no negative effects on public health. Public Health England’s (PHE) Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards (CRCE) takes the lead on public health matters associated with radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, or radio waves, used in telecommunications. Central to PHE advice is that exposures to radio waves should comply with the guidelines published by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). ICNIRP is formally recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

With respect, The INCRP guidelines, and thus existing UK standards, which both Government and Public Health England are relying on, are out of date. As recently as 2018, The Lancet stated that: 

“It has been widely claimed that radio frequency electromagnetic radiation, being non-ionising radiation, does not possess enough photon energy to cause DNA damage. This has now been proven wrong experimentally. Radio frequency electromagnetic radiation causes DNA damage apparently through oxidative stress,  similar to near-UV radiation, which was also long thought to be harmless.” https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanplh/article/PIIS2542-5196(18)30221-3/fulltext?fbclid=IwAR28ftbPVxNPr5WcdkSytvBluMI7iUKmsjKI7xAGJsCK3–bLjm8zybmfmM

Some 5G technology will use similar frequencies to existing communications systems. Other 5G technology will work at higher frequencies, where the main change would be less penetration of radio waves through materials, such as walls. While a small increase in overall exposure to radio waves is possible when 5G is added to the existing network, the overall exposure is expected to remain low, and well within the ICNIRP guidelines. ICNIRP guidelines apply up to 300 GHz, well beyond the maximum frequencies under discussion for 5G (few tens of GHz).

As has been made clear from the above, said guidelines are flawed and out of date. What’s more, there has been very little proper research on the biological effects of pulsed millimeter radiation from close proximity. To expose citizens to a technology hitherto used as a Military Weapon without Due Diligence could amount to a Crime against Humanity. It clearly goes against the fundamental Human Right to Informed Consent, enshrined in UN Law. The idea of informed consent has been universally accepted and it constitutes Article 7 of the United Nations ‘International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Finally, the roll-out goes against Democracy itself, where people and Local Authorities are being kept in the dark about developments and where they will have no power to stop the roll-out of a a Technology in their own communities, which will potentially seriously affect their Health and Environment. How can this ever be acceptable? 

A summary of PHE advice on radio waves can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/electromagnetic-fields#radio-waves. PHE is committed to monitoring the evidence applicable to this and other radio technologies, and to revising its advice, should that be necessary. For more information about public health matters associated with 5G, you may wish to contact PHE directly. You can do so by emailing: enquiries@phe.gov.uk.

This is a reactive approach, not proactive, and thus in breach with the EU The Precautionary Principle. By rolling out a Technology without Due Diligence, potentially killing people and wildlife, Government and PHE complicity – and liability – will be assured.

To prevent the above, I kindly ask again:

Where are the independent Strategic Health and Environmental Impact Assessments?

Where are the Public Consultations?

Why are Government and PHE following outdated ICNIRP Guidelines?

Why is the Precautionary Principle not adhered to?

I am looking forward to a speedy and comprehensive reply as well as urgent action to issue a Moratorium on the roll-out of 5G until the above has been complied to.

NB: A supporting document with further links will be sent to you after this.

Yours sincerely,

Tanja Katarina Rebel