• 16 OCT 09
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    #1137: French health agency recommends reducing exposure to mobiles

    From Sylvie:

    15 oct 2009 Telecompaper Europe

    Copyright 2009 Telecompaper. All Rights Reserved.

    French health agency recommends reducing exposure to mobiles

    The French Agency for Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (Afsset) has recommended a reducing people’s exposure to electromagnetic emissions from base stations and handsets because questions remain about their possible health effects, writes AFP. The body was tasked by the French government in 2007 to update its report on the effects of mobile telephony equipment and to extend it to other technologies, including Wi-Fi, WiMax, and cordless phones. A group of experts brought together by Afsset assessed thousands of studies published since 2005, interviewed specialists and measured exposure around base stations. Although most studies did not find any harmful effects from radio waves, a small number discovered effects at the cellular level. Afsset concluded that because questions remainded about long term effects and that it was not possible to formally demonstrate an absence of risk, a reduction in exposure must be considered whenever it is feasible.

    The body also suggested the use of mobile phones with a low specific absorption rate (SAR), producing maps of areas with the highest emissions and lowering exposure levels there, and operators sharing base stations. It also noted that exposure levels are much higher from handsets than from base stations and is concerned that reducing the power of base station signals could increase exposure to handset emissions. Rather than reducing base station emissions across the board, as sought by consumer associations, the agency makes the general suggestion that people should moderate their use of wireless technologies.

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