From AndrÃ© Fauteux
It is ironic that in his May 29 letter, engineer, businessman and philanthropist Lorne Trottier should call Dr David Carpenter an alarmist activist and conclude that wireless ”smart meters pose no risk to health” when not a single independent study has been performed on their health effects. In fact, in California alone, more than 2,000 complaints were filed by citizens who developed symptoms of electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS) after a wireless smart meter was installed on their home. Some 56 California towns and counties and ten Quebec municipalities have called for a moratorium on their installation because of public health concerns.
A Harvard-trained physician, in the early 1980s Dr Carpenter headed the third largest public health laboratory in America and coordinated the 5-year, $5-million New York State Powerlines Project. This series of studies financed the second epidemiological study to link overexposure to domestic magnetic fields to a doubling of the risk of childhood leukemia. Carpenter was also founding dean of the University at Albany’s School of Public Health.
In 2007, he coedited the BioInitiative Working Group Report by 14 scientists and public health experts who summarized some 2,000 studies on the health effects of electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Criticized as unbalanced, the report evidently indisposed industry and governments by concluding that current exposure standards to EMFs endanger public health, a conclusion shared by the Russian National Committe on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection which said in 2008 the ”potential risk for the children’s health is very high”. The BioInitiative report inspired the European Council to recommend limiting public exposure to EMFs based on the Precautionary Principle, despite scientific inconsistencies and uncertainties. A BioInitiative chapter on this Principle was written by David Gee, senior science advisor at the European Environment Agency. In 2009, the Agency’s director Jacqueline McGlade wrote : ”We have noted from previous health hazard histories such as that of lead in petrol, and methyl mercury, that ”˜early warning”™ scientists frequently suffer from discrimination, from loss of research funds, and from unduly personal attacks on their scientific integrity. It would be surprising if this is not already a feature of the present EMF controversy…”
Lorne Trottier’s companies have millions of dollars invested in wireless-related technologies. He created the emfandhealth.com website dedicated to ”evidence based science ”. It is co-written with Dr Michel Plante, a Hydro-Quebec employee and cellphone industry consultant. It discredits, obfuscates and ignores inconvenient truths about EMF health impacts. For instance, in 1971, the US Marine Research Institute published a bibliography of more than 2,000 studies documenting the biological effects of radiofrequencies (RFs). Since 2000, many countries, including Germany and the United Kingdom, have recommended limiting the use of cellphones, Wi-Fi and other wireless technologies in favor of wired devices to reduce exposure to RFs and protect those most electrosensitive (children, pregnant mothers, the sick and elderly).
After donating more than $30 million to McGill University, Lorne Trottier most recently financed an Ecole Polytechnique project (the electro-urban brigade) whose aim is to have engineering students convince people with EHS their condition is psychosomatic. The students should interview the most notorious person with EHS, physician Gro Harlem Brundtland, mother of the sustainable development concept and former head of the World Head Organization (WHO). During a recent Canadian visit, the former Prime Minister of Norway explained that she has been ”sharply criticized for scaring people from using cell phones, because I told the truth about my illness.” The students should also visit the Lepage family of four people sick for months since six wireless smart meters were installed in their Montreal basement apartment kitchen. Family head Pierre Lepage wrote Quebec’s Energy Board their many symptoms (headaches, insomnia, loss of appetite, etc.) receded only after putting aluminum foil on the meters to block their RF emissions.
Sadly, WHO’s EMF Research Project was headed by for a decade by electric-utility consultant Michael Repacholi, who has misrepresented unreleased WHO reports for the benefit of his corporate clients, according to physicians quoted in Microwave News. In 2005, this New York publication revealed that Repacholi invited four utility representatives – including Dr Plante – to help write WHO’s Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) document on power-frequency EMFs.
The county of Santa Cruz, California, recently adopted a moratorium on wireless smart meters because its Public Health Officer is concerned that they emit powerful RF bursts up to 1,500 times a day. Though wireless technologies were only been widely adopted in the late 1990s, several recent studies indicate risks of developing various head tumors at least double among people heavily using cellphones for a decade. It should be a wakeup call that brain cancer rates are increasing one to two percent annually in children and that frontal and temporal lobe tumors have increased by 50% in children between 1999 and 2009, according to the UK’s National Office of Statistics.
Instead of putting our heads in the sand, we should heed the recent call issued by the Austrian Medical Association to combat EHS (which affects up to 13% of Europeans) by reducing our EMF exposure as much as possible, notwithstanding modern technological benefits.
AndrÃ© Fauteux, Publisher/Editor
La Maison du 21e siÃ¨cle magazine
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