FCC Seeking Comments (“Reply Round” Phase) from the Public on RF Safety Standards

The FCC is reviewing RF safety standards and has asked for public comments by March 6, 2013.  They are currently in their second phase, which is called the “reply round,” but anyone (not just US citizens) with concerns about the health effects from Smart Meters, Wi-FI, cell phones, cell towers and other wireless devices can jump right in .

It may seem as if the federal government would have little to do with whether Edison puts a smart meter on your house, but the FCC standards have everything to do with smart meters and all the other wireless devices. This is because the FCC–whose main job is to  auction off airways and frequencies to industry and who are not experts in public health–  nevertheless, set the  standards used by both governmental and private organizations.    Public utility commissioners can justify allowing the utilities to co-locate 24 smart meters on your bedroom wall because of the FCC limits.   School district officials use those standards to expose children to wireless laptops and wi-fi radiation and say children are safe.  And judges have dismissed cases brought by concerned parents (such as the Portland Wi-Fi lawsuit) because of the FCC standards. Even when public officials want to do the right thing, such as stop cell tower installations near people’s homes, the FCC standards, which are part of the 1996 Telecommunications Act requirements,  are used by industry to sue our cities.

These standards though do not protect health.   They were set up (as Joel Moskowitz writes) by “engineers and physical scientists” from industry groups and are outdated.   When they were set up, the FCC ignored recommendations from its own health agencies. For example, in the case of cell phones, they approved the industry backed cell phone power density of 1.6 rather than the health agencies’ recommendations that it be 1.0.  The FCC also, Moskowitz writes, in its current testing of radiation absorption rates for users of cell phones “failed to enforce its [own] guideline,”  which says that devices need to be tested as they are used,  and instead allowed tests to be done with the phone held an inch from one’s head, which is not how most people talk on a phone.  Print out and read Dr. Joel Moskowitz’s Comments on the 2012 GAO Report  which he shared with the FCC for an excellent review of this. Read it slowly with a cup of tea and take notes.

Word has it that industry wants to loosen the standards even further. If this happens, the amount of radiation that people get from their cell phones could triple (Slesin)– to say nothing of the more intense exposures from other wireless such as Wi-Max and  Wi Fi 5G.

So if this is important to you, please send in your “reply” comment. It’s an official government filing, but it’s not as hard as it looks.  On your letter write the docket numbers: ET Docket 03-137 and WT Docket 12-357.  To file it on line, save your completed comment to pdf format and submit the pdf.  All comments will be posted on the FCC website. See this FCC link for their directions.  If you have questions write to me in the comment section of this article and I will do my best to help.

Here is mine and here is the link for comments in general.   NOTE: To read the comments  after pressing individual comment links look up at the orange “Detailed filing Information” box, press “view,”  and it will put the document in a reading format.


Part Two: Ellen Mark’s Comment. California Brain Tumor Association

As one example I am re-printing (with permission) the comment filed by Ellen Marks of California Brain Tumor Association.  Ellen’s husband, Alan, was diagnosed at the age of 56  with a malignant brain tumor which was on “his right frontal lobe exactly where he held his cell phone for many years” (quote from Zack Marks).  Ten days later, Ellen’s son  Zack’s former boss, Senator Edward Kennedy, also was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor.

Ellie and her family were instrumental in getting San Francisco (the first in the nation) to approve an ordinance which would require cell phone companies”to publicly display how much radiation their cell phones emit.”     CTIA, the trade association which represents the wireless communications industry, took the city of San Francisco to court and after two years (at least as it stands) won on the rationale that the officials couldn’t “compel speech,” that is force the mobile phone companies to give this notice. Here’s Ellen’s letter to the FCC:

Ellen K. Marks California Brain Tumor Association
February 2, 2013
Federal Communications Commission

I am writing to impress upon you the dire need to change the RF safety rules as they are inadequate to protect human health as the rules are based on physics rather than on biological studies. There are many excellent peer reviewed studies proving that non-ionizing radiation breaks the blood brain barrier and damages DNA causing cancer and other deleterious effects. The is occurring at non-thermal levels. Your current standards only take into account thermal heating and this must be changed.

Most children and teens are heavy users of cell phones and studies prove that their brains and tissues absorb more radiation than that of an adult. Please employ new practices in regard to RF standards as our youth will have a lifetime of exposure. Brain tumors are on the rise in the temporal and frontal lobes; the area to which the phone is held. One recent study showed brain tumors on the rise in 20-29 year olds with just 5 years of use.

As Director of the California Brain Tumor Association, we have seen an increase in gliomas the past few years which have been attributed “more likely than not” to cell phone use. With the ubiquitous use of cell phones and with children using them daily, keeping them in their pockets for hours and 87% of teens sleeping with them under their pillows (Pew Research) this is a potential health catastrophe. Your current standards are obsolete and need to take into account non-thermal effects of RF on the brain and body.

As Director of the California Brain Tumor Association we are seeing more and more cases the past few years of deadly gliomas that have been attributed “more likely than not” to ipsilateral cell phone use. The “victims” range in age from 22- 61; several are already deceased. We strongly urge you to take on new standards to protect ALL American citizens NOW. Thank you.


Ellen K. Marks

This entry was posted in Alan Marks, California Brain Tumor Association, Cell Phones, CTIA, Do Cell Phones Cause Brain Cancer?, Ellen Marks, FCC RF Safety Standards Reviewed, FCC Standards, Radiation, general, Health Impact, Science, Health, Personal Stories, Joel Moskowitz, San Francisco Ordinance Cell Phone Dangers, Zack Marks and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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