Monday, January 21, 2008

Using a mobile phone before going to bed could stop you getting a decent night's sleep, research suggests.

Hi All

This headline should not surprise you, specially if you are electro hypersensitive and suffer from sleep problems on a regular basis!

What the story does not tell is that many sources of electromagnetic radiation cause the same problem. This story needs to be expanded to explain that cordless telephones which are now used in the majority of modern homes, use a similar technology. They cause strong microwave emissions and the same serious health consequences as using a cell phone. They are particularly dangerous because people tend to use cordless phones for much longer periods while casually chatting in the comfort of their homes. When the cordless phone is a DECT phone and emits radiation all day and all night, the dangers are greater. WiFi is another serious danger to health.

If you know someone who is regularly using a cell phone, cordless telephone or WiFi, please help them make the connection between using those wireless devices sleep problems and the long term effects to their health.

The Canadian Initiative to stop
Wireless, Electric, and
lectromagnetic Pollution

Mobiles linked to disturbed sleep
Using a mobile phone before going to bed could stop you getting a decent night's sleep, research suggests.

The study, funded by mobile phone companies, suggests radiation from the handset can cause insomnia, headaches and confusion.

It may also cut our amount of deep sleep - interfering with the body's ability to refresh itself.

The study was carried out by Sweden's Karolinska Institute and Wayne State University in the US.

This research suggests that if you need to make a make a phone call in the evening it is much better to use a land line.
Alasdair Philips

Funded by the Mobile Manufacturers Forum, the scientists studied 35 men and 36 women aged between 18 and 45.

Some were exposed to radiation equivalent to that received when using a mobile phone, others were placed in the same conditions, but given only "sham" exposure.

Those exposed to radiation took longer to enter the first of the deeper stages of sleep, and spent less time in the deepest one.

The scientists concluded: "The study indicates that during laboratory exposure to 884 MHz wireless signals components of sleep believed to be important for recovery from daily wear and tear are adversely affected."

Researcher Professor Bengt Arnetz said: "The study strongly suggests that mobile phone use is associated with specific changes in the areas of the brain responsible for activating and coordinating the stress system."

Another theory is that radiation may disrupt production of the hormone melatonin, which controls the body's internal rhythms.


About half the people in the study believed themselves to be "electrosensitive", reporting symptoms such as headaches and impaired cognitive function from mobile phone use.

But they proved to be unable to tell if they had been exposed to the radiation in the test.

Alasdair Philips is director of Powerwatch, which researches the effects of electromagnetic fields on health.

He said: "The evidence is getting stronger that we should treat these things in a precautionary way.

"This research suggests that if you need to make a phone call in the evening it is much better to use a land line, and don't have your mobile by your bedside table."

Mike Dolan, executive director of the Mobile Operators Association, said the study was inconsistent with other research.

He said: "It is really one small piece in a very large scientific jigsaw. It is a very small effect, one researcher likened it to less than the effect you would see from a cup of coffee."

Last September a major six-year study by the UK Mobile Telecommunications and Health Research Programme (MTHRP) concluded that mobile phone use posed no short-term risk to the brain.

However, the researchers said they could not rule out the possibility that long-term use may raise the risk of cancer.

In the UK, mobile services operate within the frequency ranges 872 to 960 MHz, 1710 to 1875 MHz and 1920 to 2170 MHz.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2008/01/21 09:01:48 GMT


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Riverside teacher cases lead to study by cancer agency

Hi All

This story is about a cancer cluster at the Riverside Elementary School. It appears that the authorities have tested all the 'usual' toxic suspects except for electro magnetic radiation. This is strange because there are several antennas is close proximity to this school and other schools in the area.

Please follow the link below to gotemf2. You will find a great amount of information about this situation. You will also find that this site is a great source for EMR information, in general.

The Canadian Initiative to stop
Wireless, Electric, and
lectromagnetic Pollution 26-e3be35a070ae

School location - 3 Cell Towers,
other schools in same area could follow

TITLE : Riverside teacher cases lead to study by cancer agency
Union worried after 10 staff diagnosed.
Maria Rantanen, The Times
Published: Tuesday, January 08, 2008

The Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows teachers' union has called on the school district to investigate why an estimated 10 teachers at Riverside Elementary have been diagnosed with cancer over the past few years.

The teachers' union is asking that all staff cancer cases be looked at and the school inspected for any potential links. "We think that's a fairly high number compared to the general population," MRTA president Drusilla Wilson said.

A representative from WorkSafe B.C., Dr. Goran Krstic from Fraser Health, district staff and the union got together late last year for what Wilson called an "unsatisfactory meeting" to look into the high number of cancer cases.
"We're asking they exercise all due diligence in determining whether there are any factors they need to be aware of," Wilson said.
But the school board's occupational health and safety officer, Judy Dueck, said there are a "whole bunch of variables" that need to be looked at to determine whether this is a cancer cluster or just a coincidence.

While the air has been tested for mold because of previous problems, Dr. Goran Krstic of Fraser Health suggested at the meeting the school district conduct tests of "volatile organic chemicals" in the air.
Radon has been ruled out because of the geographical area the school is located in.
"We're certainly prepared to carry through because the anxiety levels are high," Dueck said. She added that while she's concerned about the health of staff members, discussions with medical staff have led her to understand it's probably not a cluster.
A study will be led by the B.C. Cancer Agency, and Dueck is starting to collect data for it, starting with a staff survey at Riverside.

The latest cancer victim from Riverside died on Jan. 2 of brain cancer, whereas her other colleagues who have been diagnosed have recovered. The cancer types have ranged from breast cancer, throat and larynx cancer, and leukemia, according to Wilson.
In the fall, teachers at the school started discussing how many of them have had cancer, and they approached the union with their concerns.
"It did cause some alarm among staff," Wilson said. The school, which was built in the 1980s, has a lot of carpeting on the walls. "We now know that not only is it not a good idea in terms of the actual things it might have in it -- actual chemical substances that break down over time -- it harbours dust and mites," Wilson said, adding that the carpeting is being removed.
WorkSafe B.C.'s response at the meeting was that it's not a work safety issue, but Wilson points out that is usually their response.
"My sense of WorkSafe B.C. is their first response to any claim is 'no' and if you appeal it they look at it again," Wilson said, adding that admitting the school is an unhealthy workplace opens it up to a lot of liability issues.

© Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Times 2008

Monday, January 7, 2008

Cows are dying, and farmers think they know why

The Canadian Initiative to stop
Wireless, Electric, and
lectromagnetic Pollution


Cows are dying, and farmers think they know why
In lawsuits filed against utilities, some farmers contend stray voltage from overloaded power lines nearby has killed their cattle. Xcel Energy argues the cow deaths could be blamed on other factors.

H.J. CUMMINS, Star Tribune
Last update: January 7, 2008 - 5:19 AM

As dead cow No. 79 lay stiff in a tractor scoop one recent cold morning on Greg Siewert's dairy farm, it was pretty clear in the nearby sick barn which would become No. 80.

Wobbly on three legs, the fourth swollen and kinked at her side, one cow stared out below stooped shoulders, her black and white coat hanging dull and low from a grim row of ribs.

"It's a slow, painful tortuous death, is what it is for them," said Siewert, who with his father, Harlan, owns Siewert Holsteins in Zumbro Falls. "It's like watching someone die of AIDS."

But Siewert contends it's not disease that's killing his cows. It's electricity. Specifically, it's something called "stray voltage" from a nearby Xcel power line. He has filed a $4 million lawsuit in Wabasha County District Court against Xcel.

The utility, in its legal response, argues that bad farming could be at fault, that cows get sick from bad herd management, improper feed, and a general lack of "cow comfort," as it's described in the dairy world.

Xcel also argues this kind of dispute belongs before utility regulators -- in Minnesota, the Public Utilities Commission -- not in court.

The Siewerts' suit is one of at least six in southern Minnesota -- and one of three against Xcel, the first against the utility in Minnesota since 1992, several attorneys said.

The farmers' suits blame overloaded power lines, some strung 70 years ago that now have to carry power to all the refrigerators, clothes dryers and TVs in houses built since. They also claim new science is on their side. And farmers, with bigger operations and smaller margins, have little choice but to protect against losses of cows or milk production.

Stray voltage is a real phenomenon. New York City, with its aging infrastructure and growing electrical needs, sees the problem often. Consolidated Edison recorded 1,214 incidents of stray voltage in 2005. Among the deaths attributed to it was a woman stepping on a metal plate and a dog standing on wet cement.

On or off the farm, the key question is how much stray voltage is enough to hurt.

Completing the circuit

Dairy farmers complain about two kinds of stray voltage. One is extra spillover from overworked power lines onto the farm's own electrical system, where the two connect. The other, more controversial, is ground current. Electricity needs to run in a complete circuit. If it can't return to its source over the utility's lines -- for ill repair or lack of capacity -- it takes to the earth through the lines' grounding rods.

Some estimates say two-thirds of the current runs back that way. And when a dairy farm stands in its path, the mud, metal milk machines and water troughs conduct the current to the cows, shocking them.

Dairy farmers and utilities have been fighting about stray voltage since the early 1980s, according to Chris Hardie, in the dairy state of Wisconsin, who runs a website on the issue. The first disputes were whether it was even real, and then they became about how much voltage is harmful -- something several government agencies in the mid-1990s set at 1 to 2 volts, Hardie said.

Utilities still cite a 1996 advisory report to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission as the latest, best wisdom. Its authors found "no credible scientific evidence" that ground currents can sicken dairy herds.

As for stray voltage overall, a Minnesota official doesn't see it as a widespread problem.
"Some farmers have experienced stray voltage, but it has also been used for decades as an excuse for issues on the farm," said David Weinand, dairy development grants administrator at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

However, since 2004, two state supreme courts have significantly advanced the farmers' cause. In Wisconsin last month, the court granted farmers a long window to sue a utility, recognizing it takes time to determine if stray voltage is causing a herd's problems. In Idaho in 2004, the court denied an Idaho Power Co. appeal of a $17 million judgment against it in a stray-voltage case involving dairy cows.

Scientific developments are also helping farmers. Immunology has advanced enough to explain the connection between electricity and the immune system, said Siewert's attorney, Will Mahler of Rochester.

And lawyers are getting smarter about the science, going behind government studies and challenging the utilities' on-farm test.

Utilities measure at noon, said John Bass, an independent engineer in Minnetonka. But stray voltage peaks during peak electricity demand, because that's when the power lines are carrying the biggest loads, he said. "We always measure at 8 a.m. and 5 p.m."

Still, attorney Barry Hammarback doesn't expect stray voltage cases to pour in, because they take years and farmers need to disprove other culprits for their cows' illnesses.

Five years after dairyman Chuck Untiedt of Lakefield sued Xcel, the case was settled in mediation last month, according to Untiedt's attorney, Richard Diamond of Minnetonka. Terms are confidential.

Persistent disagreements in Minnesota led to the formation in 2005 of the Minnesota Stray Voltage Task Force, a standing group of utilities, state government, and veterinary and dairy industry representatives trying to avoid more lawsuits.

"When most of the litigation comes, it's when the utility has already done what they perceive to be the easiest, clearest fixes, but the farmer says, 'Well, but there's something else going on here,'" Hardie said.

Ruling out other culprits

Greg Siewert filed his suit in 2004.

Siewert, 43, bought his dairy farm in 1990, 5 miles down a country road from the family dairy farm where he grew up.

Over the years, his cows lost weight and gave less milk. They developed chronic mastitis, an infection of the udder. They fell lame, with swollen and tender joints, and they developed ulcers.

The herd of about 350 behaved strangely, too. They were jumpy at the milk machines. And Siewert noticed they didn't slurp water, like cows normally do; they lapped it like a dog.

"My nutritionist kept telling me it can't be the ration, and my vet kept saying it's not an infectious disease," Siewert said.

Finally in 2004, someone suggested stray voltage. Xcel's testing measured its level at 2.2 volts. The utility and Siewert installed equipment, which Siewert said reduced his stray voltage but left enough to keep making his cows sick.

Take cow No. 79. "She laid down yesterday, and couldn't get up. I had to shoot her."

Xcel declined to comment specifically on Siewert's case. But in a general statement, the utility said, "Xcel Energy takes these concerns/complaints very seriously. We will work with the farmer/landowner and do testing as needed to determine if a problem exists, and what the cause of the problem is. If, after testing, it is determined a problem exists, one or a combination of solutions may be implemented."

H.J. Cummins • 612-673-4671