• 24 AUG 12
    • 0

    Another dismissive RF review by Anders Ahlbom and Co. backs ICNIRP RF guidelines

    Anders Ahlbom, former consultant to the tobacco industry and a director of Gunnar Ahlbom AB, a telecom PR firm specializing in environmental and energy regulations (which resulted in Ahlbom being kicked off the IARC panel for this huge and undeclared conflict of interest) -Also see this link- is lead author of a new report that very predictably gives the all-clear to the ICNIRP RF limits. Not too surprising as Ahlbom is a longstanding member of iCNIRP and is currently a consulting expert even though ICNIRP members are not supposed to have such links according to testimony in an Australian Senate inquiry by Ken Joyner from Motorola who stated: “If you want to look at one standards body that has specifically excluded any industry representatives, there is the ICNIRP body. You cannot be a member of the ICNIRP if you are part of industry. They exclude you from that process.”

    Apparently the Swedish government is not bothered by Ahlbom’s monumental conflict of interest or his removal from the IARC panel in order to maintain a level of scientific integrity. But of course Ahlbom and his little band of telco-friendly coauthors are just giving the government, ICNIRP and industry what they want to hear. Downgrade Hardell’s work, the findings of IARC and then give the all-clear. Not much integrity in that.

    To quote from the final paragraph:

    The bottom line is that research on mobile telephony and health started without a biologically or epidemiologically based hypothesis about possible health risks. Extensive research for more than a decade has not detected anything new regarding interaction mechanisms between radiofrequency fields and the human body and has found no evidence for health risks below current exposure guidelines. While absolute certainty can never be achieved, nothing has appeared to suggest that the since long established interaction mechanism of heating would not suffice as basis for health protection.

    Don Maisch

    **********************************************************************************

    Report supplied by Mona Nilsson

    The report is available for downloading here: http://www.fas.se/pagefiles/5313/10-y-rf-report.pdf

    Selected quotes:

    RADIOFREQUENCY ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS AND RISK OF DISEASE AND ILL HEALTH – Research during the last ten years
    Anders Ahlbom, Maria Feychting Yngve Hamnerius Lena Hillert

    Foreword
    The Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research (FAS) was commissioned by the Government to monitor issues relating to research into electromagnetic hypersen- sitivity and to document and report on the state of research at regular intervals, starting in 2003.
    In order to carry out its mandate, FAS assigned Professor Anders Ahlbom of the Institute of Environmental Medicine at Karolinska Institutet to work with a project group to produce annual reports on scientific developments in the field. The group has consisted of Professor Maria Feychting, Professor Yngve Hamnerius, Associate Professor Lena Hillert, and Professor Anders Ahlbom (chair). The group presented its first report in 2003 and has since then published annual reports through 2010.
    The Government’s mandate read as follows:

    “FAS is to monitor research into electromagnetic hypersensitivity. Under this mandate the Council is to work with other research bodies, authorities and parties that FAS deems appropriate to document and provide information on the state of research every other year.” This special mandate from the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs came to an end at the beginning of 2012. FAS then tasked Professor Ahlbom with producing a summary of the previous reports. This report follows.
    Because almost ten years have elapsed since the first report was published, the group has been asked to look back at the previous decade to see how the state of knowledge has developed over that period. Electromagnetic fields are encountered in many situations and their characteristics with respect to strength, frequency, and modulation vary depending on origin and usage. However, the vast majority of research during the last decade addresses the type of electromagnetic fields that are used in connection with mobile communication, often referred to as radiofrequency fields. Possible health risks related to exposure to those fields are the focus of this review.
    Stockholm, June 2012
    Erland Hjelmquist
    Secretary-General Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research

    Excerpt from the executive summary:

    WHERE WE STAND TODAY
    We now know much more about measurements and absorption of RF fields and also about sources of exposure to the population and levels of exposure. A considerable number of provocation studies on RF exposure and symptoms have been unable to show any association. Overall, the data on brain tumor and mobile telephony do not support an effect of mobile phone use on tumor risk, in particular when taken together with national cancer trend statistics throughout the world.
    Research on mobile telephony and health started without a biologically or epidemiologically based hypothesis about possible health risks. Instead the inducement was an unspecific concern related to a new and rapidly spreading technology. Extensive research for more than a decade has not detected anything new regarding interaction mechanisms between radiofrequency fields and the human body and has found no evidence for health risks below current exposure guidelines. While absolute certainty can never be achieved, nothing has appeared to suggest that the since long established interaction mechanism of heating would not suffice as basis for health protection.

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