By Jack O’Dwyer
The Calif. Brain Tumor Assn. condemned passage of a bill Sept. 14 that allows proliferation of cell towers for the new 4G and 5G cellphone transmitting devices.
The Calif. Assembly voted 46-16 with 17 abstentions and the Senate voted 22-10 with 18 abstentions for a bill that won’t let local communities block the new generation of devices that are needed every 5-10 houses according to some estimates. It now goes before Gov. Jerry Brown who could veto or not veto it.
Ellen Marks, Executive Director, California Brain Tumor Association
noted that the League of California Cities said the bill “unnecessarily and unconstitutionally strips local authority over public property and shuts out public input and local discretion by eliminating consideration of the aesthetic and environmental impacts of ‘small cells.'”
|Senator Ben Hueso
The bill, the League said, represents “a major shift in telecommunications policy and law by requiring local governments to lease out the public’s property, cap how much cities can lease this space out for, eliminate the ability for cities to negotiate public benefits, the public’s input and full discretionary review in all communities of the state except for areas in coastal zones and historic districts, for the installation of “small cell” wireless equipment.”
Equipment Is Not “Small”
It further said, “Despite the wireless industry’s claim that the equipment would be ‘small’ in their attempt to justify this special permitting and price arrangement solely for their industry, the bill would allow for antennas as large as six cubic feet, equipment boxes totaling 35 cubic feet (larger than previous bill version of 21 cubic feet), with no size or quantity limitations for the following equipment: electric meters, pedestals, concealment elements, demarcation boxes, grounding equipment, power transfer switches, and cutoff switches.”
CBTA said 300 state cities have expressed strong opposition to SB 649, a bill designed to “fast track” the permitting of wireless and small cell telecommunications facilities in local communities. Mayors of six of California’s largest cities have sent the AT&T-initiated bill’s sponsor, Senator Ben Hueso, a letter opposing the measure, said CBTA.
Said CBTA: “In spite of the telecom industry and SB 649’s sponsors selling this bill to underserved communities as a way to provide them the needed access to better wireless capabilities, The Greenlining Institute //greenlining.org
has come out in opposition stating, “Under SB 649, it is likely that providers will focus any service improvements on high-income areas. SB 649 in no way guarantees that low-income communities and communities of color will gain increased access to advanced communications services
CBTA Cites Studies
CBTA, headed by executive director Ellen Marks, issued a press release that cited several studies pointing to the dangers of pulsed, electro-magnetic radiation.
DNA damage in those living close to a cell tower was documented in a new study by Electromagnetic Biol Med. 2017 Aug 4:1-11: “Impact of radiofrequency radiation on DNA damage and antioxidants in peripheral blood lymphocytes of humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations.”
“All of the recorded radiofrequency radiation (RFR) power density values in this study were well below the Federal Communication Commission’s maximum permissible exposure limits in the U.S. for the general population,” said Joel Moskowitz, Ph.D., University of Calif. Berkeley School of Public Health.
The study, said CBTA, follows on the heels of the major $25 million study recently released by the U.S. National Toxicology Program of the National Institutes of Health that found increased incidences of brain cancer, malignant tumors of the heart and DNA damage in laboratory animals from exposure levels the FCC considers “safe.”
The American Cancer Society’s statement
on the significance of this new study was cited: “The NTP report linking radiofrequency radiation (RFR) to two types of cancer marks a paradigm shift in our understanding of radiation and cancer risk. The findings are unexpected; we wouldn’t reasonably expect non-ionizing radiation to cause these tumors.”