Health monitoring in Llanddewi Rhydderch following rollout of 60Ghz 5G

J. Mwanzia made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to Cyngor Sir Fynwy

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Roedd y cais yn rhannol lwyddiannus.

Dear Monmouthshire County Council,
It has been announced that Llanddewi Rhydderch has been chosen as a 5G 60Hz test site and all members of the village are being exposed to new levels of EMR without explicit consent.
1. What health monitoring of this experimental population is being undertaken in conjunction with this test?
2.Is there any monitoring of the impact of this exposure on wildlife, insects, plants?
3.Are the levels of exposure in homes being measured?
The 2017 '5G Appeal' to the European Commission (https://www.5gappeal.eu/ ), was signed by 304 scientists and medical doctors. The report states : "We recommend a moratorium on the roll-out of the fifth generation, 5G, for telecommunication until potential hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists independent from industry...RF-EMF has been proven to be harmful for humans and the environment."

Yours faithfully,

J. Mwanzia

MCC - Freedom of Information, Cyngor Sir Fynwy

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Freedom of Information Team
Monmouthshire County Council

 

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The Council welcomes correspondence in English or Welsh or both, and will
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next time try using our online form ([1]click here) which makes processing
your request quicker for our team.

 

Help yourself

To some of the more common freedom of information requests we receive we
publish the information on the website.

·               Business property rates – on the [2]open data page you
will see a link to the ‘Business property data set’

·               Public Health Burials – we publish this information on
the [3]cemeteries and burials page.

Alternatively, it may be worth checking previous Freedom of Information
requests submitted via [4]What Do They Know

 

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Many thanks/Diolch yn fawr,

 

Freedom of Information Team | Tîm Rhyddid Gwybodaeth

Monmouthshire County Council | Cyngor Sir Fynwy

 

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Service request # 5254190:

Hi J,

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Good afternoon,

I refer to your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

The response to your request is as follows:

It has been announced that Llanddewi Rhydderch  has been chosen as a 5G 60Hz test site and all members of the village are being exposed to new levels of EMR without explicit consent.

1.       What health monitoring of this experimental population is being undertaken in conjunction with this test?

Your enquiry does not provide detail of the test site. The Council is aware of a trial test of a 60Ghz radio technology in the Llanddewi Rhydderch area, which was completed March 2019. The trial was to prove that 60Ghz radio could be used as part of 5G deployment, without the need for masts, just small cell technology
strategically placed.

With regard to health monitoring the Council can advise that the overall industrial specifications and health and safety considerations of 5G technology is not devolved to Wales, resting instead with the UK Government.  However, responsibility for the wider public health of the Welsh population is devolved to the Welsh
Government.

The Welsh Government is advised by Public Health England’s Centre for Radiation, Chemicals and Environmental Hazards (PHE-CRCE) in relation to the protection of communities from radiation hazards, which includes 5G, wifi and related technologies. The Welsh Government retains the services of PHE-CRCE in an advisory
capacity because of their level of expertise and breadth of remit, and because they give greater weight to documents that use rigorous review processes and base their advice on the entire range of scientific information available.

The following information has been provided to the Welsh Government by PHE-CRCE in respect of enquiries relating to the health effects of 5G and shared with us:

Mobile telecommunications technology has developed through several generations and there are now many 2G, 3G and 4G base stations installed throughout the environment providing services to users of mobile phones and other devices. Over the decades since the networks were first introduced there has been a general trend
towards increasing numbers of smaller transmitters that individually provide services to smaller geographical areas and which have reducing radiated powers. Against this background, many measurements have been made and these continue to show that exposures of the general public to radio waves are well within the
international health-related guideline levels that are used in the UK. These guidelines are from the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) and underpin health protection policies at UK and European levels.

In relation to the implementation of 5G user devices and networks, the roll out of this technology is at an early stage and reflects the latest evolution in mobile communications technology. Current technical standards that draw on the ICNIRP guidelines will apply to the products that are developed and the UK network
operators are already committed to complying with the ICNIRP guidelines.

With the increase in the volume of information being transferred, more spectrum is being made available and the highest frequencies being discussed for future use by 5G are around ten times higher than those used by current network technologies, up to a few tens of GHz. Their use is not new, and they have been used for
point-to-point microwave links and some other types of transmitters that have been present in the environment for many years. ICNIRP guidelines apply up to 300 GHz, well beyond the maximum (few tens of GHz) frequencies under discussion for 5G.

ICNIRP restated the radiofrequency (RF) parts of its 1998 exposure guidelines in 2009 based on its own comprehensive review of the scientific evidence published at that time. Evidence reviews from independent expert groups, the Advisory Group on Non-Ionising Radiation (AGNIR) in 2012 and the Scientific Committee on
Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) in 2015, [1]support the view that adverse health effects are unlikely to occur if exposures are below international guideline levels.

ICNIRP published draft updated radiofrequency guidelines in 2018 and is presently finalising these new guidelines. Public Health England (PHE) will consider the new guidelines when they are published.

PHE is a collaborating body in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International EMF Project, which brings together organisations from around the world to share information on this topic. [2]An overview of the radio wave exposure restrictions applied in a range of countries has been provided by WHO.

This shows that the majority of countries are following the ICNIRP guidelines (41 volts per meter at 900 MHz and 58 volts per meter at 1800 MHz).

Exposure to radio waves is not new and health-related research has been conducted on this topic over several decades. In particular, a large amount of new scientific evidence has emerged over the past few years through dedicated national and international research programmes that have addressed concerns about rapidly
proliferating wireless technologies.

The main focus of recent research studies has been on exposure to the types of radio signals used by current communications technologies and at the frequencies they use, up to a few GHz. Fewer studies have been carried out at higher frequencies but the biophysical mechanisms that govern the interaction between radio
waves and body tissues are well understood at higher frequencies and are the basis of the present ICNIRP restrictions. The main change in using higher frequencies is that there is less penetration of radio waves into body tissues and absorption of the radio energy, and any consequent heating, becomes more confined to
the body surface.

It is possible that there may be a small increase in overall exposure to radio waves when 5G is added to an existing network or in a new area; however, the overall exposure is expected to remain low relative to guidelines and as such there should be no consequences for public health.

PHE is aware that different countries have responded to concerns about electromagnetic fields in different ways and measures adopted and the reasons behind them vary from country to country.  Where countries have taken certain policy initiatives or introduced alternative limits, these do not appear to have a scientific
rationale based on health effects in the same way as the ICNIRP guidelines.  PHE is not aware, therefore, that these initiatives are driven by any scientific evidence that has been overlooked in its own advice.

PHE-CRCE keeps emerging scientific studies worldwide under review.  PHE-CRCE publishes comprehensive reviews of the scientific evidence relevant to radio wave exposures and health from time to time and it is committed to keeping its advice under review and to updating its advice should new evidence dictate that is
necessary, which at present it does not. 

You might also wish to see [3]PHE’s fact sheet on wifi.

Whilst fully appreciating the concerns surrounding the potential health effects of increased exposure to electromagnetic fields associated with digital devices and infrastructure, it is clear that there should be no current cause for concern in relation to the ever growing development and implementation of enabling
infrastructure and devices.

The Welsh Government continues to closely monitor the information published by PHE and, should the position change on health implications, we will ensure that Assembly Members and the public are updated on latest findings
   
 

2.Is there any monitoring of the impact of this exposure on wildlife, insects, plants?

Not by the Council. Also please see answer to Q1 above.

 
 
3.Are the levels of exposure in homes being measured?

The 2017 '5G Appeal' to the European Commission
([4]https://eur03.safelinks.protection.outlo...
), was signed by 304 scientists and medical doctors. The report states : "We recommend a moratorium on the roll-out of the fifth generation, 5G, for telecommunication until potential hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists independent from industry...RF-EMF has been proven
to be harmful for humans and the environment."

Not by the Council. Please see answer to Q1 above.

 

 

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Regards,

Freedom of Information

Monmouthshire County Council

 

 

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