Member of the European Parliament, Ian Hudghton, is asking the EU to rule
that further installation of TETRA masts be halted until a full evaluation
of risks to public health is carried out. Mr Hudghton, who was contacted
by Perthshire campaigners over the erection of a mast at Comrie, has
tabled an urgent question to the Commission, pointing out that current
regulations have failed to keep pace with recent developments like TETRA.
He further reminds the Commission of its own recommendations on Extremely
Low Frequency modulations, such as those used by TETRA, that further
research needs to be carried out in this field.
Speaking from Parliament in Brussels today, the MEP said:
European Union has a duty to protect public health through legislation to
harmonise regulations on exposure to electromagnetic fields. The current
guidelines are hopelessly out of date and yet the UK Government is forging
ahead with its TETRA programme quoting regulations which predate this
system. We just can’t allow this programme to run on unchecked when we
can’t put our hands on our hearts and say “It’s safe”.
Commission’s rules lay down that it’s the Member States who bear
responsibility for ensuring that adequate health protection measures are
taken. This has not happened and it’s not good enough. This is why I’ve
asked the Commission to exercise its duty of care in stopping the UK
Government in its tracks until proper testing is done.”
and Kinross SNP Councillor John Hulbert, who recently sought to have the
health implications posed by TETRA masts taken into account in planning
decisions, welcomed Mr Hudghton’s actions and said:
public have every right to a full investigation being carried out on any
new technology which might be foisted on their communities. If TETRA
proves itself to be safe then fine, but I’m not prepared just to cross my
fingers and hope for the best. Ian’s plea to the Commission adds further
fuel to the fight for a moratorium on these masts and I would hope that
the Commission listens to the growing public clamour for a full evaluation
of risks to health to be undertaken.”
NOTES: The text of Mr Hudghton’s question reads:
The Commission, in its Implementation report on Council
Recommendation 1995/519/CE, limiting public exposure to electromagnetic
fields (0Hz to 300 GHz), Section 8.3 states that “recent findings in the
extremely low frequency area …. have to be evaluated.” It further states
that the Commission will review its recommendations “taking into account
the latest scientific data and advice.”
is being introduced in the UK to serve the Police and emergency services.
It operates at ultra high frequency (395 Mhz) pulses of around 17.6Hz, a
frequency which has been shown as causing damage to the nervous and immune
systems in human beings. The UK Independent Expert Group on Mobile Phones
in their Government commissioned study of 2000, the Stewart Report, said
that modulation around the frequency of 16Hz “should be avoided” because
of possible health impacts.
spite of this, 3000 masts are being erected across the UK, 700 in my
constituency (Scotland) amidst growing public concern that the system has
never been properly evaluated on health grounds. Meanwhile amongst Police
personnel who are already using the system, symptoms associated with
exposure to mobile-communications-type radiation levels such as sleep
disruption, migraine headaches and so on are already being reported.
regulations governing public exposure to electromagnetic fields were fixed
prior to the introduction of TETRA. In light of its own report on the
Implementation of Council Recommendation 1995/519/CE, would the Commission
agree that, in the interests of public health, a moratorium be placed on
further development of this system until a proper evaluation of health
risks has been carried out.