• 26 JUN 11
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    Extraordinary claims from a New Zealand expert

    On May 16, 2011, TVNZ (New Zealand) broadcast on their breakfast show an interview with David Black. Remember he was featured on a recent NZ documentary (see earlier message) as saying that he is paid by the Telcom industry because they like what he says.
    Well, they will love this interview. Note the claim that the same science, the same epidemiology that established real serious hazards, such as tobacco and leaded petrol is now saying that there is no harm from radiofrequency. Also note the claim that the Interphone study simply came up with a null result “” there was no harm shown.

    And this guy advises the New Zealand government, ICNIRP, ICES, etc, etc.


    TVNZ Breakfast Show: An interview with David Black. June 16, 2011. (TRANSCRIPT)


    P: A high powered European council is recommending that mobile phones and wireless devices be banned from schools. It”™s labeled “Wireless devices as dangerous as asbestos and Tobacco”.

    With us now is an expert on the safety of wireless electronics, Dr. David Black, senior lecturer at Auckland Medical School. To what extent do you see good science informing this recommendation to ban cellphones in schools?

    DB: Good morning Petra. I don”™t see good science in this at all. There”™s a lot of science in this. We”™ve known about for a long time “” knowledge is evolving. There are a lot of people in the world who have done research, a great deal of expertise. But the direction that science is heading is to assure us that in fact, if anything, there are probably no risks from this sort of technology.

    P: There”™s talk that more research is needed to inform this harm hypothesis.

    DB: Well, this is an area of massive growth that is used by tens, hundreds of millions of people so more research will always be needed. It”™s a matter of keeping up with the technology side. I accept that more research is needed but one of the hazards of doing research is that people come up with hypotheses, some of which may be worst “”case-scenarios. And the people who are not used to dealing with research take these hypotheses as if they are established.

    P: And its interesting, people do wonder, they are holding these devices to their heads all the time and am I going to get a brain tumour. Is this going to affect me later in like? What does the science say?

    DB: Well, the research about brain tumours makes it quite clear that there is now no risk, the risk of brain tumours was investigated thoroughly with the Interphone study which was published last year and there was quite a lot of publicity about that and that came up with a no result. In other words a null result “” there was no harm shown.

    P: As far as children are concerned, on the developing brain has much research been done in that area?

    DB: A lot of research has been done but one of the matters that was raised by the Interphone study was that it didn”™t cover children and it was thought wise to roll on from the Interphone study and do another one which is called Mobi-kids which is now underway and I have a little involvement with that myself. But of course children use not only mobile phones but cordless phones which are the same thing.

    P: So what are the politics behind getting this through “” banning cell phones in schools and wireless laptops?

    DB: We see documents like this come out of Europe regularly “” every few years, usually from a committee, usually as a sort of draft. To me they are very much like what the Americans call a “straw man”. There are people agitated with concern, people lobby MPs.

    P: What is their advantage? Why get this through? Why do they want things like this banned? To protect children or just to get their point across?

    DB: I”™m sure many people”™s motives are good and they really believe that there is something new which they don”™t understand so they think other people don”™t and science dont. They think therefore that it should be “” ahh – that progress should be slower “” to be safer and they want a minimalist path of development which of course is contradictory to what happens in the commerce of products like this.

    P: Is it disingenuous to compare wireless networks to tobacco and leaded petrol?

    DB: Its quite wrong to do that. There”™s enormous differences. Those are all areas where there are established real serious hazards and that is on the same science, the same epidemiology which says that there is no harm from radiofrequency.

    P: So we will watch this space to see if those recommendations are enacted. Dr. David Black, environmental physician, thank you for joining us this morning.

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