• 01 MAY 14
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    Breaking News: Industry bias exposed in SCENIHR’s scientific assessment

    From Eileen O’Connor, UK Radiation Research Trust

    Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) member Dr Kjell Hansson Mild has exposed control of science within the SCENIHR group. SCENIHR excluded many studies from the latest scientific review, including five studies by the Hardell Group, published in 2013. Dr. Mild was a co-author with Dr. Hardell. At the same time SCENIHR excluded Dr. Hardell’s and Dr. Mild’s key scientific papers, they promoted Dr. Mild’s participation in SCENIHR as giving balance and transparency to this process. These studies from the Hardell Group are the longest studies on mobile phones and brain cancer. Of even greater significance is Hardell’s conclusion that the proof of mobile phones causing an increase in gliomas — the deadliest of brain tumours, and acoustic neuromas tumours on the auditory nerve.

    The SCENIHR Report fails to do a thorough review of hundreds of papers on non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF) and biological health effects, and excludes literally hundreds of papers containing new information in the field concerning adverse EMR impacts.

    In addition, Lukas Margaritis, Professor Emeritus from the University of Athens and Dr. Adamantia Fragopoulou, forwarded a report to SCENIHR including references to superb research highlighting studies working with everyday use of wireless devices demonstrating serious impacts on oxidative stress induction, learning and memory deficits, fertility reduction and cell death in animal models. These studies are published in high quality peer reviewing journals yet they are still excluded from the SCENIHR report.

    Dr Fragopoulou said, “We have pointed out serious omissions of publications from the SCENIHR opinion during the hearing in Athens on March 27-28 as well as on the uploaded file to SCENIHR. We are expecting to see much more references in the final form of the report.”

    The UK Radiation Research Trust and the Bioinitiative Working Group have raised complaints directly with the Acting Director at the EU Commission and are calling all politicians to raise this issue at the highest level as many lives are at risk and the public has a right to know.

    See letters of complaint from the UK Radiation Research Trust (below) and the Bioinitiative Work Group to John Ryan, Acting Director of the Public Health Directorate at the EU Commission .

    Eileen O’Connor
    Director
    EM Radiation Research Trust

    **********************************************************************
    28th April, 2014
    John F. Ryan, Acting Director
    Public Health Directorate,
    Health and Consumers Directorate General
    European Commission,
    L – 2920 Luxembourg

    SCENIHR Report on Potential Health Effects of Exposure to Electromagnetic Fields (EMF)
    Sent via email

    Dear John

    Thank you for your response via email on 22nd April. I appreciate your support for SCENIHR, however this group along with other bodies such as ICNIRP, IEEE and Public Health England are failing to acknowledge and accept peer-reviewed research if it does not meet with their approval or understanding.

    I have engaged with all sides of the debate for many years in the hope that we can find a way forward together. However, the division between both sides of the debate is becoming greater and leading to stronger opposition from both sides. It is an impasse that leaves private citizens at risk, and we must make every effort to root out undue influence from the industry whose profits are affected by decisions made by committee’s like SCENIHR. A body is not truly “independent” if financial ties can be made by the affected industry to committee member(s). There should be no place for financial influence in science, but sadly there is, and with potentially devastating long-term consequences for our citizens.

    I was pleased to see Dr Kjell Hansson Mild as a member of the EMF working group and realise he is the co-author of the Hardell papers. However, I am sure you will agree that his appointment to SCENIHR is only worthwhile if his opinion and work is taken into account and I question if that was the case as it was clear during the event in Athens that the important Hardell 2013 papers were rejected by SCENIHR. I therefore call on the EU Commission to investigate whether there has been any misuse of authority when selecting and rejecting important papers for review.

    One scientist does not promise true “independence” for the group as a whole. The independence of SCENIHR has been brought into question for many years by members of the public, doctors, scientists and politicians. I would like to highlight several examples.

    Please see attached a recent report from the Swedish Radiation Protection Foundation. This report clearly states that SCENIHR provided false, inaccurate, misleading and biased information and is claiming scientific fraud with a call for the report to be revised and submitted to a new group of experts that are capable of presenting an objective and accurate report of what science has shown about health risks.

    Serious allegations of corruption need to be investigated as a matter of urgency. We appear to be wasting public money on biased reports and delaying urgent action to implement the precautionary warnings that are urgently needed to protect public health.

    I would also like to draw your attention to questions raised on 16th March, 2009 by Christel Scaldemose to the Commission. These questions raise concerns regarding
    the Independence of experts on the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks. The Commission is challenged on whether these experts,
    who were involved in establishing the limits values working with ICNIRP, can be regarded as impartial and independent. Christel Scaldemose also asked what
    measures will the EU Commission take to find a better balance between critical and uncritical researchers. Download here:
    http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=WQ&reference=P-2009-1843&language=EN

    In addition, Dr Caroline Lucas launched an Alternative Resolution to the 2009 Ries Report on “Heath concerns associated with EMFs.” The Greens/EFA group raised
    the urgent alternative motion (see attachment) as the Ries Report was forced to include a late amendment calling for SCENIHR to review the scientific adequacy of
    EMF limits. The Green Party therefore submitted the Alternative Resolution, deleting the paragraph calling for SCENIHR to undertake the review. There was no
    doubt that this controversial last-minute amendment giving SCENIHR such authority would override excellent recommendations and precautionary measures
    contained within the Ries Report due to the predictable and biased nature of reporting from SCENIHR. Sadly it was too late and the Reis Report containing the
    controversial amendment calling for the review was put forward and adopted by MEPs with 559 voting for and 22 against and 8 abstentions. Download the report
    with the late amendment listed as number 1 within the following Text. Download here:
    http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA&language=EN&reference=P6-TA-2009-0216

    I feared that we would face the current situation that we are seeing today as a result of that late amendment and we are now witnessing another publicly funded biased report by SCENIHR at the cost of wasted money, but more importantly at the possible cost of many lives.

    Displays of arrogance, biased, misleading and scientific fraudulent reporting as highlighted by the Swedish Radiation Protection Foundation is not acceptable. I would like to remind the EU Commission of the opening address in Athens from Marian Harkin MEP expressing the need for a review of up to date evidence and the need for accountability. She stressed importance of openness towards lobbying and diverse opinions and the need for transparency and inclusion of all stakeholders. She reminded the EU Commission and SCENIHR that public consultation should not simply be a box ticking exercise and that consultation is only meaningful if addressing negative outcomes along with reports that have positive outcomes. Furthermore and perhaps most profoundly, she gave the stark reminder that 500 million citizens are relying on SCENIHR’s review.

    I have no doubt that Marian Harkin along with many MEPs and millions of citizens throughout the EU and the world will be disappointed to hear that SCENIHR failed with this task and their responsibility towards accurate reporting. Yet greater than my concern about the disappointment of many is my profound fear about the potential adverse health effects for all that will continue to be visited upon our 500,000,000 citizens as the Precautionary Principle in Europe becomes nothing but a weak phrase with no meaning and no protection for citizens who have absolutely no idea of these back room dealings. These good people depend on the EC and its committees for truth, not cover-up, and the money flowing to scientists who tell them all is well is a crime against each and every one of them.

    The five studies by the Hardell Group published in 2013 demand RF – EMF be classified a Group 1 carcinogen. Hardell himself states this in the conclusion of one of his most compelling epidemiologist studies. If it were almost any scientist but Lennart Hardell, one might imagine it is easy to dismiss a single scientific group or individual. To do so with Hardell’s science would be the height of scientific hypocrisy. Why? Lennart Hardell’s epidemiological studies, prior to his five papers published in 2013 were ignored by SCENIHR, when half the basis for IARC’s call in May 2011 for everything on the RF – EMF Spectrum to be classified a Group 2B carcinogen. If Hardell’s earlier study were good enough for IARC in 2011, then can SCENIHR please explain why the additional five studies of even longer duration and more specificity deemed “unworthy” by SCENIHR IN 2014? There is no answer, and it is a reason that should bring shame to SCENIHR and by association, to the European Commission itself.

    I call on the Commission to listen to truly independent/knowledgeable doctors, scientists and members of the public and take advice from the appeal contained within the Greens Alternative Motion calling for the European Group on Ethics in Science and new Technologies (EGE) to be given the additional task of assessing scientific integrity in order to help the Commission forestall possible cases of risk, conflict of interests, or even fraud that might arise now that competition for researchers has become keener.
    Thank you for your attention in this urgent and serious matter.

    With respect,
    Eileen
    Eileen O’Connor
    Director
    EM Radiation Research Trust
    www.radiationresearch.org
    The EM Radiation Research Trust is an educational organisation funded by donations. An independent Charity Registered No. 1106304 © The EM Radiation Research Trust 2003-2004
    Cc: via email
    Mike Bell
    Joe Benton MP
    Severine Bernard
    Dr Erica Mallery-Blythe
    Laurent Bontoux
    Bill Esterson MP
    Jill Evans MEP
    Susan Foster
    Giulio Gallo
    Dr Ian Gibson
    Dr Lennart Hardell
    Marian Harkin MEP
    Dr Caroline Lucas MP
    Donata Meroni
    Dr Kjell Hansson Mild
    Steve Miller
    Andrew Mitchell MP
    Cindy Sage
    Stefan Schreck
    Brian Stein
    www.radiationresearch.org

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