Raise awareness of environmental health issues in order to better protect our children and future generations.

EMF Studies

31 March 2012

A Letter of Apology to My Granddaughter - by Chip Ward

Chip Ward’s letter to his 4-year-old granddaughter merits reading in its entirety.  It is a heartfelt apology for the terrible harm our generation has done to life and the earth.  It was published from TomDispatch on Common Dreams on 27 March 2012. 

"I never saw the vast herds of bison ..."
Chip Ward: 
I wrote the following letter to my granddaughter, Madeline, who is almost four years old. Although she cannot read it today, I hope she will read it in a future that proves so much better than the one that is probable, and so terribly unfair. I’m sharing this letter with other parents and grandparents in the hope that it may move them to embrace their roles as citizens and commit to the hard work of making the planet viable, the economy equitable, and our culture democratic for the many Madelines to come.
March 20, 2012
Dear Maddie,
I address this letter to you, but please share it with Jack, Tasiah, and other grandchildren who are yet unborn. Also, with your children and theirs. My unconditional love for my children and grandchildren convinces me that, if I could live long enough to embrace my great-grandchildren, I would love them as deeply as I love you.
On behalf of my generation of grandparents to all of you, I want to apologize.
I am sorry we used up all the oil. It took a million years for those layers of carbon goo to form under the Earth’s crust and we used up most of it in a geological instant. No doubt there will be some left and perhaps you can get around the fact that what remains is already distant, dirty, and dangerous, but the low-hanging fruit will be long-gone by the time you are my age. We took it all.

29 March 2012

Cell Phone Tower Dangers: Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and Lecture by Dr. Magda Havas

The Health Department for Brazil’s third largest city, Belo Horizonte, recently released a government-funded cell phone antenna study showing an increased risk of cancer for those living within 500 meters of the antennas.  The city prosecutor has wasted no time in suing the cell phone companies, with the result that 66 of the 500 antennas which the citizens asked to be removed, have so far been taken down.  Between 1996 and 2006, 7,191 cancer deaths occurred within an area of 500 meters from the cell phone antenna base station:  a high mortality rate of 34.76 per 10,000 inhabitants.  Outside of this area, there was a decrease in the number of cancer deaths. 

Watch this 4-minute video on cell towers and cancer study in Belo Horizonte.

In a 52-minute lecture on cell phone tower microwave radiation given in Oakville, Ontario, Dr. Magda Havas, leading Canadian expert, mentions this study.

28 March 2012

Flare Still Burning at North Sea Gas Leak

There are far too many catastrophes occurring these days regarding oil and gas extraction.  The latest is Total's North Sea gas platform, Elgin, which has been leaking gas for the last three days, since 25 March 2012.  There is concern that the escaping gas could connect with the naked flame in the flare stack and explode.  BBC's Colin Blane said, "It is a serious, uncontrolled leak."

The platform is located 150 miles off  Aberdeen, Scotland.  All 238 workers were removed from the Elgin installation and the nearby Rowan Viking drilling rig by helicopter on Sunday.  Shell has moved 120 non-essential staff from the Shearwater platform and Hans Deul drilling rig, about four miles from the Elgin, because of the drifting gas.
There had not been time to extinguish the flare when the Elgin platform was evacuated, as the safety of staff had been the priority.
Oceanographer Simon Boxall told BBC Scotland's Newsnight Scotland program that the gas would explode if it connected with the flare.  He said: "It would not just go on fire, it would be a fairly volatile explosion."
A sheen of between two and 23 tons of gas condensate, measuring six nautical miles in length, was reported on the water nearby.  

The Elgin well is pumping gas from nearly four miles below the seabed.
(See full BBC News article dated 28 March 2012 here.)

27 March 2012

BP's Atlantis Platform in Gulf of Mexico Faces "Present and Imminent Danger"

A whistleblower argues that BP’s Atlantis Project faces “present and imminent danger.”  The Atlantis platform, located 190 miles south of New Orleans in the Gulf of Mexico in 7,070 feet (2,150 meters) of water, is the deepest moored floating dual oil and gas production facility in the world.  Weighing 58,700 tons, the platform has a daily production capacity of 200,000 barrels of oil and 180 million cubic feet of gas.  Just after the Deepwater Horizon explosion in April 2010, the United States consumer advocacy group Food and Water Watch published an article warning about safety and environmental concerns relating to the Atlantis platform.  (Extracts from article published on 17 March 2012 by Common Dreams.)

Whistleblower: BP Oil Platform Faces 'Present and Imminent Danger'

Whistleblower claims about BP's Atlantis filed this week argue against Bureau of Ocean Energy Management's claims platform is safe

- Common Dreams staff
A whistleblower who has a standing lawsuit against BP has argued this week that the company's Atlantis Project, located 150 miles south of New Orleans in the Gulf of Mexico, faces "present and imminent danger."  The whistleblower, Kenneth Abbott, is a former BP contractor on the Atlantis. His lawsuit says that BP failed to keep required records of the safety systems for the Atlantis.
WASHINGTON - April 22 (2010) - Following Tuesday's explosion on the Deepwater Horizon Platform, leased and operated by British Petroleum (BP) in the Gulf of Mexico, the national consumer advocacy group Food and Water Watch is warning of the possibility of a similarly tragic disaster involving the company's Atlantis Project- one of the world's deepest semi-submersible oil and natural gas platforms, located 150 miles south of New Orleans in the Gulf of Mexico.

Electromagnetic Radiation Threatening Our Lives

This excellent article from Istanbul by Gürhan Savgi was published on 25 March 2012 in Today’s Zaman.   It describes in layman’s terms the health scourge being created by mobile phone towers, the nature of electromagnetic waves, and ways to reduce radiation from these waves.  While many countries are now rolling out 4G technology, the article mentions the heightened radiation risks of 3G.  What are we doing to ourselves?!  Articles from many different countries show that mobile technology is becoming a serious health concern.

This is not Camlica, but certainly, tower madness!
Çamlıca, the famous hill on İstanbul’s Bosporus, the subject of so many poems and songs in the past, seems to inspire more complaints than compliments these days.

Now a field of antennae, Çamlıca looks nothing like it used to a century ago. People living nearby complain of insomnia, headaches, fatigue and frayed nerves. Some assert that this electromagnetic pollution is causing cancer rates to soar. The muhtarı or neighborhood headman of Kısıklı is Erkan Kalkan. Kalkan, whose father died recently of cancer, asserts that all of the 30,000 people who live here are affected by local electromagnetic pollution. The situation is not much different over on Irmak Sokak in the Ferah neighborhood, where two young mothers in their 30s and one taxi driver in his 40s are battling cancer. Battal Polat (70) points out that the giant antenna put up by TRT in 1972 right next to his home has even dried out the cherry trees he planted. He even connects the stroke of his wife, Gülcemal Polat, to the electromagnetic pollution, and then goes on to count other local incidences of both strokes and cancer.

26 March 2012

Monsanto 'Biotechnology Book for Kids' Caught Brainwashing Children

Thank you to Wake Up World – “waking up the world one soul at a time” – for this 24 March 2012 article by one of its contributing writers, Anthony Gucciardi.  The Council for Biotechnology Information has launched a book for children which spreads lies about genetically modified crops, saying they “improve our health” and help the environment”.  (See also my article "Genetically Modified Food and Agriculture".)
Monsanto 'Biotechnology Book for Kids' Caught Brainwashing Children

Facing direct opposition from the public, biotechnology giants like Monsanto and Dow are now making a disturbing attempt to brainwash developing minds into accepting their genetically modified foods using blatant lies and propaganda. In a last ditch effort to potentially sway public opinion, the Council for Biotechnology Information (CBI)  has launched the “Biotechnology Basics Activity Book” for kids. With the intent to be used by ‘agriculture and science teachers’, the activity book spreads absurd lies about GMO crops — even going as far as to say that they ‘improve our health’ and ‘help the environment’.

News from Geneva: The United Nations Orchestra Gives Its First Performance in Victoria Hall

The newly-formed United Nations Orchestra of Geneva gave its first performance in Victoria Hall, Geneva, on 16 March 2012 to a full audience of UN employees and dignitaries from Belgium, Sierra Leone and Switzerland.  Many of the 45 musicians work every day at the United Nations and other international organizations. 

“Since music is a universal language, what could be better than an orchestra to create a multicultural bridge and to strengthen links within international Geneva? Who better than the staff of international organizations themselves, many of whom are talented amateur musicians, to constitute an orchestra representing their institutions and the ideals they promote?”

25 March 2012

Seven Cases of Cancer in the Vicinity of a Cell Phone Tower

India is likely to have one billion
 mobile users by 2015
“When the Kasliwal brothers (Sanjay and Sudhir) were diagnosed with brain tumour and their dog was diagnosed with stomach cancer within a gap of a few months, their doctors advised them to look out for mobile towers in the neighbourhood. They suspected radiation from mobile towers to be a possible cause for cancer.   What was found was quite alarming. There were antennas of various mobile companies installed on a tower at a distance of mere 20 metres from their house. On measuring the radiation levels, the levels were found to be quite alarming. When the word spread, others came forward and it was found that there were seven cancer cases in the vicinity.” 

JMC to Demolish Three Cellphone Towers

(Article from The Times of India – Jaipur, 25  March 2012)

JAIPUR: This might come as a relief to all those who have been disturbed after reading a report by a Mumbai-based agency, NESA Global, of the ill effects of cell phone tower radiation. While not absolutely recognizing and accepting the harmful effects of radiation, the Jaipur Municipal Commission (JMC) Sunday onwards is going to embark on razing to the ground three cell phone towers in C-Scheme. 

Schools Going All iPad: Is This a Health Danger for Students and Staff?

Children using iPads in Long Island school
(Roslyn, New York)
The newest trend in wireless is for schools to offer iPads to students and teachers.  This article comes from Boston.  Tablets are also being given to students and teachers in schools in Geneva, Switzerland.  One reader rightly commented,  “Has anyone at these schools measured how powerful the wireless electromagnetic radiation is, that will be caused by the use of a school full of wireless devices such as these? Has anyone looked at the mass of scientific research which shows serious biological effects caused by this same wireless radiation?  Do the schools not realise that the World Health Organization has classed this type of microwave frequency wireless radiation as a possible carcinogen?  It’s about time that the school officials go back to school and do some serious research about the significant dangers that they will be causing to their children and staff.   A good place to start is the Bio Initiative Report - www.bioinitiative.org . »

Schools Abandon Textbooks To Go All iPad

(from Here and Now, 23 March 2012)

Apple reports schools in more than 600 districts have bought iPads for all of their students. And it’s not happening just in wealthy suburbs. Schools in urban districts like New York City and Chicago are also handing out iPads.

23 March 2012

Switzerland: Waves from Wireless Communication: Physicians for the Environment Requests Strict Application of the Precautionary Principle

Basel, 22 March 2012
Press Release from Physicians for the Environment (MfE – Switzerland)

Mobile Telephony :  MfE requests stricter limit values

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) considers the waves emitted by wireless communication “possibly carcinogenic”.  According to the IARC, the risk of cancer for this type of radiation is thus similar to that of the insecticide DDT, rightly banned.  Physicians for the Environment (MfE) is concerned that the limit values expected to protect the Swiss population, notably vulnerable groups such as children and pregnant women, constitute insufficient protection.  In a communication sent to the Federal Assembly, MfE thus requests strict application of the principle of precaution and – in view of the risk of cancer – lower limit values.

Children’s rooms, housing, trams or offices are experiencing a growing exposure to radiation from diverse sources:  babyphones, mobile telephony, wifi, etc., yet more and more studies warn against the serious health consequences of electromagnetic pollution for human beings and animals.

Cataracts in calves, Alzheimer’s Disease, cancer …

20 March 2012

Electromagnetic Waves and Ants Disturb a School Teacher

Here is an unusual article from the canton of Fribourg in Switzerland.  A primary school teacher reported to the communal authorities that she and her students were suffering from headaches and fatigue due to the waves being generated by Wi-Fi in the classroom.  The Swiss authorities, as usual, denied and continue to downplay or deny any connection between the electromagnetic radiation (EMR) emitted by Wi-Fi and harmful health effects. Scientific studies have revealed that EMR also could affect bees, birds, animals, and plant life. (Original article : “Les Ondes et les fourmis inquiétaient une institutrice", par Stéphane Berney, Le Matin Dimanche, 10 December 2011.  Translated from French.)
A teacher at a primary school in Châtel-St-Denis (canton Fribourg) sent a report to the Communal Council on 22 November 2010 indicating that she and her pupils were suffering from headaches and fatigue.

The reason according to her is the waves generated by the installation of Wi-Fi in the classroom.  She even witnessed an invasion of red ants from the ceiling that she attributes mainly to these electromagnetic disturbances.

19 March 2012

10 Linked BP Oil Spill Whistle-blowers and Experts Continue to Mysteriously Die

Further to my post "News from Geneva:  Transocean "On Trial" for 2010 Gulf Oil Spill", I have printed in full the 31 October 2011 article from Wake Up World about the mysterious deaths of individuals linked to the BP oil spill.  Thank you to Wake Up World for permission to print this troubling article, which begins with an explanatory video.  Wake Up World presents alternative news and information, "waking up one soul at a time".
Here is the article:
In the last year and a half at least 10 experts, whistleblowers and BP connected individuals have died under mysterious circumstances.
This information was widely reported in the below April 10th, 2011 video which at the time listed 9 deaths and 3 imprisonments, disappearances, or attempted assassinations.
Now, another BP oil spill connected individual has mysteriously died, moving the number of oil spill connected deaths to at least 10.
Most recently George Thomas Wainwright, a BP ROV pilot was supposedly killed in a freak shark attack in Australia on the 22nd October 2011.
While this is obviously a very sad story, it may have a more sinister meaning considering the fact that at least 10 other BP and oil spill related whistleblowers or experts have died since the oil spill that saw a horrendous amount of openly toxic dispersant sprayed throughout the gulf.

18 March 2012

News from Geneva: "Non" to Fracking !

Threat of shale gas exploitation beneath Lake
Geneva near the Château de Chillon 
On 11 February 2012, braving Siberian cold, nearly 2,500 persons including mayors of the communes surrounding Geneva, participated in a demonstration in Saint-Julien-en-Genevois, France, opposing exploration of shale gas. One of the participants was Anne Mahrer, Deputy of Geneva’s Green Party.   It has become urgent to resist actions of oil and gas companies because the first explorations could begin later in 2012.  Six requests for exploration permits have been made in the regions of Rhône-Alpes, Savoie, Gex, Jura.

Extraction of gas by hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking, has been banned in France since 30 June 2011, however  permits for exploration granted before that date have not been revoked.  Companies can still explore shale oil and gas reserves in France, not by fracking but by some other extraction technique, such as acidification.

"Non" to fracking!
There is no federal law in Switzerland banning fracking.  The canton of Fribourg voted to ban exploitation, while canton Vaud has had no vote on the issue.   Following exploration near Noville in Vaud for gas deep beneath Lake Geneva, the Swiss company, Petrovibri is interested in the neighboring French communes.  The canton of Vaud has said “yes” to gas exploration.  According to the company, at best, the Lake Geneva reserve could contain 20 year’s worth of natural gas needs for all of Switzerland. 

Petrovibri is now interested in the area beneath Lake Geneva between Thonon and Saint-Gingolph.  The request for exploration was made in July 2009 but only brought to public attention recently.  A local newspaper mentions an area which could extend over 800 square kilometers. 

14 March 2012

Wi-Fi removed from Canadian School - UPDATED 14 March 2012

This communication from Dr. Magda Havas (www.magdahavas.com), the leading Canadian expert and advocate on the health effects of wireless technology, says that several private schools in Canada are either not installing Wi-Fi or removing it.  This trend should extend to public schools and to countries throughout the world in order to protect our children's health. 

UPDATE (14 March 2012:  Watch this recent (21 Feburary 2012) Canadian news video about Wi-Fi .  Adolescent cardiac arrest is becoming a growing phenomenon.  There have been incidences of children as young as 10 years old going into cardiac arrest in schools where Wi-Fi has recently been installed.  The situation has become so common that children are going to school wearing heart monitors.  The video raises a lot of questions about the installation of Wi-Fi in schools.  Europe takes a precautionary approach to the issue.

 (Refer to article, "Parents Raise Concerns about Wireless Technology in Schools",  published in "Mobile Technology, suite 101", 26 octobre 2011)

07 March 2012

Swiss Federal Communication Commission Auctions off its Frequencies for US$1.1 Billion to Three Major Telecoms Operators to Pave Way for 4G Technology

The Swiss Federal Communication Commission has recently auctioned off its frequencies to the three main telecommunications operators in Switzerland:  Swisscom, Sunrise and Orange for the sum of $1.1 billion.  This will pave the way for the use of modern mobile technologies such as LTE (Long Term Evolution), better known as “4G”.   This new technology is the fourth generation of wireless communication that would provide a comprehensive and secure broadband system for laptop computers’ wireless modems, smart phones and other cellular devices and support ultra-broadband Internet access, gaming service, streamed multimedia and other services. (Ref. Tribune de Genève article.)

According to Tracey-Lee Dorny, Chairperson of the Electromagnetic Radiation Research Foundation of South Africa, 4G technology has higher penetration levels into buildings and “therefore into our bodies”.  4G is being rolled out in order to sell a whole new generation of wireless gadgets to consumers.  She believes that the testing of 4G is “scorching” trees in her garden and the surrounding area and is the source of growing reports of illnesses, including tinnitus, headaches, shooting pains, nausea and dizziness in the suburbs of Johannesburg where the trials are being conducted. (Ref. "Cellphone Masts Damaging our Brains?")

03 March 2012

Mobile Phones Sold in Israel to Bear Health-Hazard Warning Label

The Knesset, Israeli Parliament, gave blanket approval to a bill requiring all mobile phones sold in Israel to bear a health-hazard label.  The bill, which passed its first of three readings into law on 29 February 2012, also requires all advertisements of mobile phones to carry this warning.  As for cigarettes, all advertising targeting minors would be banned under the law.  Breaking the law would be a criminal offense.

The article in Haaretz by Ronny Linder-Ganz  continues, “Although the jury is out on the science, some suspect that heavy cell phone use may cause cancers, particularly in children.  Youngsters can be more vulnerable to carcinogens because of their faster rate of cellular division.

“The labels will read ‘Warning – the Health Ministry cautions that heavy use and carrying the phone next to the body may increase the risk of cancer, especially among children.’

01 March 2012

May Justice be Served for Crimes against Health and the Environment

Oil spill in Louisiana:  the trial of BP, Transocean and Halliburton 
Drawing by Herrmann (Tribune de Genève)
The Tribune de Genève published my recent commentary on « Guilty Industrialists » which mentioned the verdicts concerning Eternit and Monsanto announced on 13 February 2012.  (See article "Double Victory in Court Rulings") In the case of Eternit, the guilty persons were each condemned to a prison sentence of 16 years.  It is likely that they will escape incarceration.  Monsanto, on the other hand, has to totally compensate the injured party a sum of money that is « a drop in the ocean » of the company’s  2011 benefits totaling US$6.08 billion.  

Jean-Claude Mas
On 27 January 2012, Jean-Claude Mas, founder of  the company PIP (Poly Implant Prothèse) which made breast implants, was charged with causing bodily harm and banned from leaving France, after being released on bail. The PIP implants, which are filled with an irritating silicone gel, present a “high risk of rupture” (5% according to French authorities).  From 400,000 to 500,000 women in the world carry these implants. Although other countries are paying for the cost of having these implants removed, the Swiss health authority, Swissmedic, has to date not recommended their removal for the 280 women carrying them.