Prof Dariusz Leszczynski 5G and Health What does the science tell us PART 1 premiere

Prof Dariusz Leszczynski 5G and Health What does the science tell us PART 1 premiere

Premiered Dec 26, 2019
Find out about the latest scientific research on the health effects of wireless radiation and 5G from a world expert, Prof. Dariusz Leszczynski. Talk given at Suter Theatre, Nelson, NZ on 29 Nov 2019. ——————————————————————————————————————————————————- Who is 5G Free Nelson? 5G Free Nelson is a grass-roots community group who are very concerned about the dangers posed by 5G microwave radiation. Our aim is to generate public awareness about the dangers of 5G, in order to stop the rapid deployment of 5G, and create a safe 5G Free NZ. web: fbook:… email: youtube:… All donations gratefully received:… ——————————————————————————————————————————————————- This video has a Creative Commons Attribution License. That means we want you to share it, copy it, mash it up, and upload it everywhere you can. But, when you do, please provide a link to the source video here: Thanks. ——————————————————————————————————————————————————- PROF. DARIUSZ LESZCZYNSKI: ——————————————————————————————————————————————————- Professor Dariusz Leszczynski (PhD, DSc) is a highly regarded research scientist and international expert on the biological effects of wireless communication device radiation, and their impact on human health. In 2011 he was a member of an advisory committee of 30 experts convened by IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) to determine whether there is any scientific link between exposure to RFEMR (Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Radiation) and cancer. The report that IARC produced, prompted the WHO (UN World Health Organisation) to classify RFEMR as a Class 2B carcinogen in May 2011. The talk will include a Q&A session, followed by plenty of time for discussion afterwards. Tea, coffee, and beverages will be available. Please bring a plate of nibbles to share. Currently, Prof. Leszczynski is Adjunct Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Helsinki, Finland and Chief Editor of the ‘Radiation and Health’ section for the online journal Frontiers in Public Health. He holds two doctorates: – Molecular biology (DSc), from Jagiellonian University, Poland. – Biochemistry (PhD), from Helsinki University, Finland. For nearly 22 years (1992-2013) he worked at STUK (the Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority), conducting research on the biological and health effects of non-ionizing radiation. From 2000 – 2013 he was a Research Professor, and from 2003 – 2007 he was the Head of the Radiation Biology Laboratory. He has held several visiting appointments: – 1997 – 1999: Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School. – 2006 – 2009: Guangbiao Professor at Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, China. – 2012 – 2013: Visiting Professor at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia. Because he is recognised as an international expert in the field of biological and health effects of radiation emitted by wireless communication devices, his consultation is sought by many government and scientific agencies around the world. For example, he testified before the US Senate Committee (2009), and the Committee of the Canadian House of Commons (2015). And, he has been an expert advisor to many organisations, such as the Ministry of Health of India (2014), US National Academies, Australian ARPANSA, German BfS, Polish Ministry of Digitization, ICNIRP, and others. You can find a full CV and a list of his publications on his science and policy blog: BRHP – Between a Rock and a Hard Place. https://betweenrockandhardplace.wordp… ——————————————————————– end ———————————————————————————-


BIRDS & BEES ARE KILLED IN MILLIONS – Health Effects on Bees & Animals

BIRDS & BEES ARE KILLED IN MILLIONS – Health Effects on Bees & Animals


Stop 5G v ČR


The worldwide maintenance of the honeybee has major ecological, economic, and political implications. In the present study, electromagnetic waves originating from mobile phones were tested for tremendous effects on honeybee behavior. Mobile phone handsets were placed in the close vicinity of honeybees. The sound made by the bees was recorded and analyzed. The audiograms and spectrograms revealed that active mobile phone handsets have a dramatic impact on the behavior of the bees, namely by inducing the worker piping signal. In natural conditions, worker piping either announces the swarming process of the bee colony or is a signal of a disturbed bee


The disappearance of Bees is largely blamed on Pesticides. However there is definitely another cause – non thermal electro magnetic radiation. Mobile phones, Wi-fi, and SmartMeters are all contributors to EMF’s. North American Health Organizations and Governments should look into industry financed programs and change them before health is affected – both for Bees and Human Beings.




Will cell phone radiation kill off birds, like shown in 2.0? By Syed Firdaus Ashraf

I went to the transfer station today to get rid of my recyclables; while there I overheard a resident talking about the birds on her property have disappeared for the last two years. It was an opportunity for me to share with them info to raise their awareness of the source of this problem. Another resident piped up saying there was a cell tower placed on a man’s property in monsun, MA that they now refer to it as the dead zone because all the birds disappeared from the property.  What do you think this radiation exposure is doing to your loved ones? This article refers to 4G and now we are going to be exposed to 5G!!!…….Sandaura

Will cell phone radiation kill off birds, like shown in 2.0?

By Syed Firdaus Ashraf

December 20, 2018 12:10 IST

‘Cell phone towers with 4G technology might certainly impact the lives of birds, and humans.’
‘This needs a greater amount of investigation, research and mapping in the country.’

IMAGE: School students make a formation of a sparrow during a programme to create awareness to save the bird in Chennai. Photograph: Babu/Reuters

Mohammed Dilawar, the ornithologist known as India’s sparrow man, is happy that Rajinikanth’s latest movie 2.0 highlights the issue of birds and how cell phone tower radiation affects their existence.

“The movie has highlighted the importance of birds’s lives and I am sure people across the country will take this issue seriously in future because Rajinikanth and Akshay Kumar have highlighted the importance of birds to our lives,” Dilawar tells‘s Syed Firdaus Ashraf.

2.0 shows that birds are dying because of the electromagnetic radiation emitted from cell phone towers. How far is it true?

There has been research done abroad which says there is some kind of impact on birds due to cell phone towers. I was part of a committee that looked into this issue 10 years ago.

The committee was constituted by the ministry of environment and forests to find out the impact of cell phones on birds, bees and wildlife in India.

A lot of literature review was done then and it was found that the decline of sparrows in cities is not only because of cell phone towers. There are other reasons also, like lack of food and pesticides which led to a decline in the number of sparrows.


Read full article at:

Concord Safe Technology to Host Expert Panel on Wireless Risks, Sunday January 12th, 2-5 p.m.

Concord Safe Technology to Host Expert Panel on Wireless Risks, Sunday January 12th, 2-5 p.m.

On Sunday, January 12, 2020, from 2-5 p.m., Concord Safe Technology, in collaboration with The EMR Network, will host an Expert Panel, “Wireless Technology in Our Midst: How Wi-Fi, Smart Meters, Cell Antennas and 4G/5G ‘Antenna Densification’ Present Risks to Health, Privacy, Security and the Planet” at the Willard Elementary School, 185 Powder Mill Road in Concord. Admission is free.

The objective is to educate local citizens and governing boards in Concord, MA about the little understood health and privacy risks, and other unintended consequences from:

  • placing radiating wireless routers in Concord’s new middle school and new children’s room at the Concord Free Public Library;
  • placing radiating wireless “smart” meters on homes;
  • placing radiating cellular antennas on municipal infrastructure in residential neighborhoods;
  • risks from 4G/5G “antenna densification”, expected to present significantly greater health and mental health risks from higher frequencies, greater intensity of pulsations, closer proximity of small cell antennas, and from new indoor exposures from the Internet of Things (IoT).

Virginia Hines, Director of The EMR Network says,

“The public deserves the full truth about wireless radiation, including the well-established cancer and neurological risks, and a range of other serious health, privacy, security and planetary consequences.”

Presenters include:

Karl Maret, M.D., M. Eng., President, Dove Health Alliance; researcher in Electromagnetic Fields and Energy Medicine, and former researcher in electromagnetic fields in the Canadian military. Senior Research Fellow, National Institute for Science, Law and Public Policy (NISLAPP).

Devra Davis, Ph.D., MPH, Founder and President of Environmental Health Trust and author of Disconnect: The Truth About Cell Phone Radiation, What the Industry is Doing to Hide It, and How to Protect Your Family.

Paul Heroux, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Occupational Health, McGill University School of Medicine, Canada.

Tim Schoechle, PhD, Telecommunications technology expert and Senior Research Fellow, National Institute for Science, Law and Public Policy. Author of numerous policy papers on the mistaken directions in utility and telecommunications infrastructure, including the landmark Getting Smarter About the Smart Grid and Re-Inventing Wires: The Future of Landlines and Networks.

Camilla Rees, MBA. Communications strategist and award-winning health and environmental activist. Founder of and Manhattan Neighbors for Safer Telecommunications. Senior Policy Adviser, NISLAPP.

Cece Doucette, MTPW. Co-founder of Wireless Education, Cece has facilitated safe technology practices in schools and works actively with Massachusetts State legislators to introduce bills on wireless radiation and public health in Massachusetts.

Concord Safe Technology, a local group, aims to educate citizens and public health and safety decision makers about the scientific research on wireless radiation and related safety hazards for the community.

The EMR Network is a national 501(c) 3 non-profit organization educating the public, government officials and those in health and scientific disciplines about the biological, health and environmental impacts of man-made electromagnetic fields.

Guest Column: Woodland Park, let’s take back our power

Guest Column: Woodland Park, let’s take back our power

Growing Grid Costs
This photo taken Friday, July 13, 2018 shows a newly installed smart meter at a residence in Raleigh, N.C.

A “smart meter” is an electronic two-way transmission device that records consumption of electricity and communicates the information wirelessly to the electric supplier for monitoring and billing purposes.

My introduction to the world of smart meters came when I watched the documentary “Take Back Your Power,” which covers the history of these data-collection devices that emit radiation. It documents the uphill battle of ordinary citizens and communities against government and utility interests who are apparently determined to cover the earth with this radiation-emitting technology. When I found out my dear friend in California had become seriously ill after the installation of a smart meter, the issue became personal.

I contacted Intermountain Rural Electric Association and learned that the installation of smart meters in Woodland Park is set to begin in January 2020. When I expressed my concerns I was told, “We’ve looked into it, there isn’t a problem.” As I continued to list the problems other people and communities have experienced — such as headaches, insomnia, fatigue, Tinnitus, heart palpitations, decreased immune and cognitive function and irritability — the IREA representative said again, “We’ve looked into it, there isn’t a problem.”

At that point I knew we had a big problem!

Read full article at:

‘We are guinea pigs’: Protesters sign wave against 5G in South Kohala

‘We are guinea pigs’: Protesters sign wave against 5G in South Kohala

  • A group of concerned citizens protest the installation of 5G networks Tuesday on Queen Kaahumanu Highway at Waikoloa Beach Drive. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)
  • A group of concerned citizens protest the installation of 5G networks Tuesday on Queen Kaahumanu Highway at Waikoloa Beach Drive. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

WAIKOLOA BEACH — While a debate into the safety of 5G technology takes place in communities across the world, a group of people waved signs in front of Waikoloa Beach Resort on Tuesday to warn the public of potential health hazards — as they see them.

Organized by Naomi and Yoav Melamed, the group wanted to educate people about perceived dangers of wireless technology, especially 5G and Smart Meters.

he FCC, however, doesn’t see a link between 5G — the fifth generation cellular technology that will vastly improve speed and connectivity — and health risks.

But demonstrator Yoav Melamed said 5G is a new generation technology that hasn’t been safety tested.

“We are guinea pigs,” he said. “We have reason to believe it will be harmful.”

Because 5G uses a shorter bandwidth, smaller antennas will be placed closer together, often on utility or light poles, opening up more space for the ever-increasing use of smart objects, also known as the Internet of Things, where all household devices are connected to this system wirelessly for remote control.

Yoav Melamed said that since the 5G antennas are closer together than the existing cell towers, they’re emitting higher radiation in closer proximity to human habitation. He indicated there were over 1,700 scientific studies that show the radiation causes harm.

An internet search provides a plethora of information on both sides of the issue.

Claims of the possible health effects include cancer, DNA damage, and oxidative damage that can cause premature aging. Disrupted cell metabolism and potential other diseases through the generation of stress proteins and infertility are also on some of the lists of risks.

“The FCC ignores the research,” Yoav Melamed said. “This is a global, federal and state problem.”

According to the FCC website, guidelines and rules regarding radiofrequency, or RF, exposure are based upon standards developed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) as well as input from other federal agencies.

These guidelines specify exposure limits for hand-held wireless devices in terms of the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR). The SAR is a measure of the rate that RF energy is absorbed by the body.

Several U.S. government agencies and international organizations work cooperatively to monitor research on the health effects of RF exposure. According to the FDA and the World Health Organization (WHO), among other organizations, to date, the weight of scientific evidence has not effectively linked exposure to radio frequency energy from mobile devices with any known health problems.

In June, Gov. David Ige signed House Bill 2651 into law. The bill establishes a process to upgrade and support next-generation wireless broadband infrastructure throughout the state.

It establishes a permitting, application, review, and approval process for small wireless providers or communications service providers to install wireless facilities on state- or county-owned utility poles, or install associated utility poles, in the right-of-way.

Yoav Melamed said that law takes away the county from having a say in whether the technology is wanted.

“There should not be any 5G in the whole world. It’s even harmful to the bees,” he said.

He said they are not against technology as it is a means of interconnectivity and access to information, but rather than using wireless, he would like to see more fiber optics going into people’s homes. He said with the introduction of 5G, people will not have a choice and will not be able to consent to it because it will be all around the entire population.

The group protested in from of the resort because it is hosting the 2019 IEEE Global Communications Conference this week through Friday.

The the flagship conference is themed “Revolutionizing Communications,” and includes 13 symposia and a variety of tutorials and workshops with keynotes and panels from prominent research, industry and government leaders, business and industry panels, and vendor exhibits, according to its promotion.

Outside the conference, Naomi Melamed added every smart thing will cause radiation from smartphones to smart refrigerators. She said she is also concerned about privacy issues.

“Third parties will have all information about our lives. We will be paying for our own surveillance. 5G will make data collection easier. It’s very Orwellian,” she said.

“We want to protect ourselves. There is power in masses. The most important thing happening right now and nobody is talking about it. Once it’s installed it’s harder to remove,” she said.

Mara Stevens came to wave signs because she said she loves the Earth and all of her children. She said 5G has a bigger plan other than communications.


Read full article at:

Moratorium on 5G: American Scientists, Doctors and Healthcare Practitioners’ Letter to President Trump


Moratorium on 5G: American Scientists, Doctors and Healthcare Practitioners’ Letter to President Trump

Excerpt Experts are urging for reductions in exposure to protect human health and the environment. From the Environmental Health Trust and published in Global Research. A broad coalition of scientists, doctors and advocates sent a National 5G Resolution letter to President Trump demanding a moratorium on 5G until potential hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists independent from the telecom industry. The 5G Resolution was developed during the first three-day US medical conference fully dedicated to this topic, Electromagnetic Fields Conference on Diagnosis and Treatment, which convened in Scotts Valley, California in September. The letter references the published scientific studies demonstrating harm to human health, bees trees and the environment from current wireless technology and posits that 5G will both increase exposure and add in new technology never safety tested for long-term exposure…SNIP
Read on »

Hearing radio frequencies

Hearing radio frequencies

I was reading the Wikipedia article on tinnitus, and came across this pearl of a sentence:

A common and often misdiagnosed condition that mimics tinnitus is Radio Frequency (RF) Hearing in which subjects have been tested and found to hear high-pitched transmission frequencies that sound similar to tinnitus.

Hmm, what? Yes, humans, under special circumstances, can hear radio-frequency pulses in the range of 2.4MHz to 10GHz (corresponding to radio frequencies and microwave) as buzzes, clocks, hiss or knocking at apparent auditory frequencies of 5kHz and higher (very high-pitched). That doesn’t mean that you can hear talk radio by receiving AM waves (that would be unbelievably annoying); it just means that when it’s very very quiet, you can hear a faint high-pitched noise from RF sources.

But how could electromagnetic waves be detected as sound, which is a pressure wave? After all, light is an EM wave too, but we don’t hear light! It’s a long story, but basically, you’re a microwave bongo head. Elder and Chou (2003) offer a thorough overview of the phenomenon.

Apparently, RF hearing was first reported in the 1940s by people working with radar, but reports were dismissed as illusions or hallucinations. The phenomenon was investigated scientifically by Frey in 1961, who concluded that RF hearing is a real thing. It can be stopped, for example, by placing a piece of aluminum between the RF source and the ear.

RF sources can only be heard by people with working audition above 5kHz. This would imply that RF sources create an acoustic vibration close to the cochlea that gets detected as high-frequency sound. Indeed, one can record electrical potentials inside the cochlea evoked by RF pulses that look just like potentials evoked by sound waves.

The authors further report that the apparent acoustic frequency of the RF pulse is independent of the EM frequency of the actual pulse but dependent upon head dimensions. So EM energy gets absorbed by the head and somehow this energy is transformed into pressure waves that get reshaped by the head. Thus, microwave bongo head.

The most likely explanation for this is the thermoelastic expansion theory. When RF pulses are created near a container of water, it is possible to detect evoked sound waves in the water; the acoustic frequency of these waves is similar to that of the sounds heard in RF hearing. When an RF pulse is absorbed by water, it locally elevates the temperature, which causes a rapid local expansion which then gets propagated as a pressure wave. The local elevation in temperature can be quite small: the authors give a figure of 5 x 10-6 degrees Celsius (!). This sound wave gets transmitted by bones to eventually make its way to the cochlea, where it gets detected as just another pressure wave.

The authors point out that this is neither dangerous nor useful. It’s just kinda cool. Ain’t science neat?

Elder, J., & Chou, C. (2003). Auditory response to pulsed radiofrequency energy Bioelectromagnetics, 24 (S6) DOI: 10.1002/bem.10163

Hearing radio frequencies

Electromagnetic radiation from power lines and phone masts poses ‘credible’ threat to wildlife, report finds

Electromagnetic radiation from power lines and phone masts poses ‘credible’ threat to wildlife, report finds

Electromagnetic radiation may damage bird's ability to navigate 
Electromagnetic radiation may damage bird’s ability to navigate  CREDIT: KEITH MORRIS / ALAMY LIVE NEWS 


Electromagnetic radiation from power lines, wi-fi, phone masts and broadcast transmitters poses a ‘credible’ threat to wildlife, a new report suggests, as environmentalists warned the 5G roll out could cause greater harm.

An analysis of 97 studies by the EU-funded review body EKLIPSE concluded that radiation is a potential risk to insect and bird orientation and plant health.

However the charity Buglife warned that despite good evidence of the harms there was little research ongoing to assess the impact, or apply pollution limits.

The charity said ‘serious impacts on the environment could not be ruled out’ and called for 5G transmitters to be placed away from street lights, which attract insects, or areas where they could harm wildlife.

Matt Shardlow, CEO of Buglife said: “We apply limits to all types of pollution to protect the habitability of our environment, but as yet, even in Europe, the safe limits of electromagnetic radiation have not been determined, let alone applied.

“There is a credible risk that 5G could impact significantly on wildlife, and that placing transmitters on LED street lamps, which attract nocturnal insects such as moths increases exposure and thereby risk.

“Therefore we call for all 5G pilots to include detailed studies of their influence and impacts on wildlife, and for the results of those studies to be made public.”

Buglife called for 5G transmitters to be moved away from street lights where insects are drawn
Buglife called for 5G transmitters to be moved away from street lights where insects are drawn

As of March, 237 scientists have signed an appeal to the United Nations asking them to take the risks posed by electromagnetic radiation more seriously.

The EKLIPSE report found that the magnetic orientation of birds, mammals and invertebrates such as insects and spiders could be disrupted by electromagnetic radiation (EMR). It also found established that plant metabolism is also altered by EMR.

The authors of the review conclude that there is “an urgent need to strengthen the scientific basis of the knowledge on EMR and their potential impacts on wildlife.

“ In particular, there is a need to base future research on sound, high-quality, replicable experiments so that credible, transparent and easily accessible evidence can inform society and policy-makers to make decisions and frame their policies.”

Does cellphone use kill birds? Experts weigh in on idea promoted by Shankar’s ‘2.0’


Does cellphone use kill birds? Experts weigh in on idea promoted by Shankar’s ‘2.0’

Across the country, we’re seeing migratory birds crash landing into poles and fences in urban localities – are cellphones the reason?
  • Tuesday, December 04, 2018 – 15:22
Screenshot from YouTube/Gazab Wood

Avian and exotic animal specialist Dr. Rina Dev has been a practicing veterinarian for over a decade now in India’s financial capital and has always maintained that her feathered patients are superior in intelligence to even canines. But over the last five years, Rina has been witnessing a strange and worrisome phenomenon in Mumbai. Several migratory birds that pass over the city in winter have been crash landing into populated areas and even industrial zones, far removed from forests or water bodies where they traditionally halt.

“I get at least three pallid scops owls in my clinic every single week and the latest one was found in an industrial area in Andheri East,” reveals Dr. Rina. “They are crashing into buildings and poles. Their behaviour is far from normal,” she adds.

And close to 1000 kilometres from Mumbai, in the garden city of Bengaluru, Jayanthi Kallam, the co-founder of the Avian and Reptile rehabilitation centre narrates a similar ordeal.  For three years now, the Indian Pitta which migrates from the Himalayas to Sri Lanka, has been found disoriented and weak in the lawns of homes in Karnataka’s capital city.

“They migrate in September and October and sighting is very rare,” says Jayanthi. “But this year, we found at least 12 birds that had lost their way. Why were they bumping into poles and why were they flying so low in populated areas has become a matter of concern,” she adds.

Across India, rescuers and experts in the avian field are recounting similar abnormal behaviour amongst birds flying through cities. And what was a daily subject of conversation for only those concerned with the field of ornithology has now entered public domain, following the release of director Shankar’s 2.0, starring actors Rajinikanth and Akshay Kumar in lead roles.

In the film, Akshay plays the role of an ornithologist who attempts to make the public aware of the effect of electromagnetic field radiation (EMF) from cellphone towers on the avian species. Scenes in the film show birds crashing to their deaths due to disorientation. It holds no punches and has created a flutter amongst audiences across the country, with its message – radiation from cellphone towers is killing birds.

‘Everyone with a cellphone is a murderer’

This is the claim that Pakshirajan (Akshay Kumar’s character), a cellphone snatching “evil aura”, wildly declares. In a flashback sequence ahead of the

interval in the movie, the “aura”, which is out to destroy cellphone towers, recalls how he was once a kind and gentle ornithologist. As the years pass, a cellphone tower is set up near his home and he notices birds behaving strangely in the sanctuary he has built for them. They smash into fences, come crashing into the ground and even face severe reproductive issues. He appeals to multiple government authorities, all the while stating that it is the increasing presence of electromagnetic field radiation that is causing the death of birds. He points that if we do not put an end to it, the end of humanity will soon be upon us.

According to the National institute of Environmental Health and Sciences, electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) are invisible areas of energy, often referred to as radiation, that are associated with the use of electrical power and various forms of natural and human-made lighting. EMFs are typically grouped into one of two categories by their frequency – Non-ionizing, which means low-level radiation and is generally perceived as harmless to humans, and Ionizing, which is high-level radiation and has the potential for cellular and DNA damage.

Many experts have pointed out that cellphone towers emit non-ionised radiation that is different from nuclear radiation or even the waves you are exposed to while getting an X-ray done. While these rays cannot penetrate deep into the cells of humans or affect molecular structure, they create very stressful situations for birds in urban areas (where there is a larger concentration of towers).

But stakeholders in India’s massive cellular industry wouldn’t hear any of it. Two days ahead of the movie’s release, the Cellular Operations Association of India had written to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) over the film’s depiction of mobile phones. According to a complaint letter by the ‘non-governmental society’ that is ‘dedicated to the advancement of modern communication’, the film “falsely depicts mobile phones and mobile towers as harmful to living creatures and the environment including birds and human beings, on account of electromagnetic field (EMF) emissions from them.”

The association even claims that the depiction of mobile services and towers is ‘false, based on no evidence and wholly fictional’. But studies conducted both abroad and in India, show that there is definitely reason to be concerned.

What does science say?

As recent as May 2018, an analysis of 97 studies by the EU-funded review body EKLIPSE concluded that radiation from cellphone towers, phone masts, WiFi and broadcast transmitters is a potential risk to insect and bird orientation and plant health. The report found that the magnetic orientation of birds, mammals and invertebrates such as insects and spiders could be disrupted by EMR.  Authors of the review have stressed on the need to strengthen the scientific basis of knowledge on EMR and its impact of wildlife. In fact, 237 scientists have reportedly appealed to the United Nations through a petition, asking them to take risks posed by electromagnetic radiation more seriously.

Closer home, an expert group was formed by the Ministry of Environment and Forest to study the possible impacts of communication towers on wildlife, including birds and bees. It pointed out that India is likely to become one of the world’s largest markets for cellphones and was devoid of any policy on infrastructure development and location of cell phone towers. They studied 919 reports on the effects of EMF, with 81% of the reports cataloguing effects on humans, 3% recording effect on birds and just 2% on wildlife. But even in the 30 existing studies, 23 concluded that EMF had a negative impact on birds while 6 out of 7 studies concluded negative impact on bees.

The observations made on impact on birds include that they are at higher risk of radiation exposure due their ability to fly, that EMR affects their ability to recover from acute physiological stressors, radiation causes acute physiological stressors, potential physiological and behavioural repercussions and malformation in embryos.

Jayanthi Kallam further points out that the feathers of birds act as receptors of high levels of EMF.

“When exposed to high EMF, these birds receive a small electric shock that can impact their flight and even the path they take. Birds use magnetic navigation to travel, but then contrasting magnetic fields present in the atmosphere will leave them completely disoriented,” she points out. “In urban areas they are already exposed to high levels of noise and air pollution. Increased levels of EMF could just be the straw that broke the camel’s back,” she adds.

Or in this case, as per the MoEF study, it could be the reason we do not see sparrows in our cities any more.

“Reproductive and co-ordination problems and aggressive behavior has also been observed in birds such as sparrows (due to EMF) (Balmori, 2005). General methodology used for such study was, from each area, all sparrows were counted in addition to the mean electric field strength (Everaert & Bauwens, 2007). In similar studies in India, population of Passer domesticus was found fast disappearing from areas contaminated with electromagnetic waves arising out of increased number of cell phones, in Bhopal, Nagpur, Jabalpur, Ujjain, Gwaliar, Chhindwara, Indore & Betul (Dongre & Verma, 2009). It was also observed that when 50 eggs of House Sparrow, exposed to electromagnetic radiation (EMR) for durations of five minutes to 30 minutes, all the 50 embryos were found damaged in a study carried out by the Centre for Environment and Vocational Studies of Punjab University (Kumar 2010, Ram 2008),” reads the report.

In bees, studies have linked electromagnetic radiations with an unusual phenomenon known as ‘Colony Collapse Disorder’. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) occurs when a ‘hive’s inhabitants suddenly disappear, leaving only queens, eggs and a few immature workers. The vanished bees are never found, but thought to die alone, far from home. The theory is that radiation from mobile phones interferes with bees’ navigation systems, preventing them from finding their way back to their hives’. Bees are considered crucial to sustaining human population on this planet.

But Asad Rahmani, former director of Bombay Natural History Society, who also chaired the commitee that came out with report, expresses doubt over these studies.

In an interview to Deccan Herald he has said, “People feel because of cell phone and mobile tower radiation, the number of house sparrows are on a decline. But the feeling is not science. There is no scientific proof between electromagnetic radiation and absence of sparrows. In the countryside there is no dearth of house sparrows. And if radiation is the culprit, then why are pigeons still around in the cities?”

Rahmani acknowledged that there were several gaps in their study and said, “Our study was a baseline one, with information collected from various parts of India. However, we did not do experiments. To collect data, we would have had to take a fixed sample size, in this case, live birds, and subject them to radiation and then monitor changes in their body. But we did not do this.”

Ornithologist Mohammad Dilawar who has studied house sparrows extensively and was a member of the expert committee, points out that EMF radiation could be a factor affecting sparrows. But he also adds that there could be other reasons.

“Studies abroad have conclusively proved that when the number of cellphones in an area increase, the number of sparrows decrease and vice-versa. However, in India, the topic has not been studied well. In the 2011 MoEF study, we had said that EMR could be one of the reasons why sparrows were vanishing but not the only reason. Other reasons include lack of nests and food,” he told Down To Earth, following the release of the film. “But if this is what the plot of the movie is about, then it is a good thing that popular cinema has started talking about electromagnetic radiation or EMR. EMR is an invisible kind of pollution. So far, we have seen other kinds of pollution being depicted in documentaries and popular cinema, but not EMR,” he said.   

Physicists whom TNM contacted also maintained that current data available on the subject did not provide conclusive information on the adverse effects of EMF radiation.

The 2011 report too highlights the need to conduct more studies in this area of EMF radiation and the effects it has on wildlife. It suggests that EMF should be recognised as a pollutant and regular auditing should be conducted in urban localities/educational/hospital/industrial/residential/recreational premises and around the protected areas and ecologically sensitive areas. It also stressed on the need to introduce a law for the protection of urban flora and fauna from emerging threats like EMF, as conservation issues in urban areas are different from wildlife habitats. It further calls for independent monitoring of radiation levels and overall health of the community to be conducted. It specifically focused on monitoring animal mortality.

7 years later, little has been achieved

Director Shankar is not the first member of the film industry to raise an alarm in regard to EMF radiation pollution. As early as 2013, Bollywood actor Juhi Chawla came out in public to protest against the setting up of mobile towers in residential areas. She shared her fear of illnesses that could be caused because of EMF radiation from a tower set up at a government guest house near her home. She filed a case and it is currently pending in Supreme Court. Five years later, however, there has been no change on ground.

In February this year, the actor-cum-movie producer wrote a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, cautioning against the health hazards due to EMF radiation from mobile tower antennas and WiFi hotspots. She further sought to know whether the Centre, which is implementing 5G to achieve the objectives of Digital India, has done enough research on the new technology.

Dr. Rina Dev points out that the MoEF is responsible for ensuring that these studies are conducted immediately.

“Flamingos that are flying in from Siberia are crash landing in Mumbai. Unless we conduct studies backed by the government, we will not be in a position to understand what exactly is happening,” she points out.

Jayanthi meanwhile says that time is of essence and that EMF radiation cannot be ruled out merely because only birds and insects seem to be affected.

“The same was thought of pesticides. We saw it first affect insects, then birds and finally we saw what happened to humans who ate food sprayed with the chemical. And now we are all trying to switch to organic produce,” she says. “In the case of EMF, we need to recognise its danger with thorough studies and counter it before we can see the adverse effects it will have on human beings.”



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