Study on Cell Tower Radiation a Farce: Scientist
After Cellular Operators Association of India, scientists have come out refuting Swadeshi Science Movement’s study on radiation threat for Kochi and Trivandrum from cell towers.
“If the green, yellow and red ranges of readings are based on recommendation of Bio-Initiative 2007 report and further underscored by the Bio-Initiative 2012 report, you need not loose sleep. The levels they recommend are too low and without any scientific basis,” said Dr K S Parthasarathy, former secretary of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board and who holds a PhD degree in medical Physics from University of Leeds, UK and is conversant with biological effects of radiation.
The Swadeshi Science Movement claimed that they categorised the radiation levels in the state into three groups - less than 30 dBm (Decibel-milliwatts) was given the colour code of green and was considered safe, 15-30 dBm coded with yellow to suggest caution and more than 15 dBm was given the red colour code, meaning danger.
Led by Cusat professor V P N Nampoori, the team alarmed Kochites and asked them to be cautious as “almost 90 per cent of areas in Kochi has pinged yellow” and recommended that no more rooftop cell phone towers be installed in both the cities.
“Though Bio initiative reports (BIR) are not based on sound science, cell- tower- radiation- scare- mongers selling protective shields and RF measuring instruments, complying with BIR 2007 recommendations, love to uphold BIR values for obvious reasons. Cindy Sage, who authored five sections and co-authored one of BIR, herself owns SAGE EMF Design, a consultancy firm which declares “Creating Low Field Lighting for Interiors” and “Remediation: What if your existing home has high EMF?” among its functions. The conflict of interest is obvious,” said Parthasarathy.
“The Department of Telecom accepted the recommendations of the Inter Ministerial Committee and accepted one tenth of the levels recommended by the International Commission on Non-ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), as India’s safe levels. This has a safety factor of 500. The committee has considered all evidence. This is a settled issue,” he said.
“Any effort to mislead the public using BIR is not acceptable. CUSAT researchers must publish objective details such as the radiation levels in watts per square meter at the locations measured by them. This debate is no more between CUSAT researchers and cellular operators. Public has every right to know whether the radiation levels measured by CUSAT researchers exceed the DOT safe levels or not,” he added.
The Bombay IIT Professor, who worked in the team, is also marketing a device called Detex 189 and promotes products which he claims to protect people from electromagnetic radiation, said Parthasarathy.
“CUSAT study has caused avoidable concern. The agency which funded the CUSAT study must clarify whether the researchers measured levels higher than the DOT safe limits in Kochi and Thiruvanathapuram. There must be follow up on it in public interest,” he opined.