5G is the next generation of wireless data infrastructure. Since the Internet has been a part of our phones it has been released in “generations” (hence the G) and we currently use the 4th of these. Right now, most of us have 4G phones. 5G has been on the horizon for a while and has been tested in a few markets. It has yet to be widely deployed. Some wireless customers, especially those of AT&T, may not know this because AT&T has been using fake 5G branding since the beginning of the year on their 4G phones.
In a statement Mayor Ted Wheeler along with two commissioners wrote that there’s evidence suggesting wireless networks can cause health problems including cancer. They claim the FCC has not completed enough research to demonstrate that 5G networks are safe.
From a large-scale study conducted by the National Toxicology Program, NTP which is part of Health and Human Services, a proposed resolution reads that, “There is evidence to suggest that exposure to radio frequency emissions generated by wireless technologies could contribute to adverse health conditions such as cancer.”
This study started over 10 years ago exposing over 10,000 rats to RF radiation as used in cell phones, but the study didn’t actually involve frequencies connected to 5G networks. When the study began, there was no 5G and 4G was “state of the art”.
The Portland City Council would like a study specifically for 5G. This would most likely become available when 6G or even 7G is the norm since these studies usually take years to complete.
In modern civilization, RF (Radio Frequency) energy is used in just about everything we do. From our cell phone networks to city infrastructure. We see it everywhere. We also see it in our homes and places of business. WiFi networks use RF energy to operate. Television broadcasts, radio broadcasts, and cordless phones all use RF energy. Smart home systems, Bluetooth headsets, and even your wireless mouse all rely on RF to function. We are all exposed every day.
A big part of this is about control.
In their resolution, Wheeler, Eudaly, and Fritz express dismay that federal law prevents state and local governments from refusing federal mandates on telecommunications standards.
State and local governments are required to accept all telecom companies’ applications to build new wireless communication infrastructure. This gives massive Federal Control over the new 5G network overhaul.
“Wireless companies in the U.S. say they’ll have to install about 300,000 new antennas, close to the total number of cell towers built over the past three decades,” the proposed resolution states. “This substantial increase in cell towers deployed in communities means greater contact with them.”
Of course, this exposure is only harmful if 5G is found to affect human health. And unfortunately, the only way to figure that out would be for the FCC or DHHS to conduct another large-scale trial. A trial that wouldn’t be done in time to matter since 5G is practically knocking on the door.
That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be studied. And in fact, a small but growing movement of European scientists are calling for caution amid the dawning of 5G networks around the world, arguing that the available data on the health risks of cell phone radiation should be cause enough for everyone to slow down.
While Portland is the first, it will almost certainly not be the only to oppose 5G.
William (Bill) Sikkens has been a technology expert for KXL on the Morning Show with Steve and Rebecca since 2014. With an expertise in I.T., cyber security and software design he has had more than 20 years’ experience with advanced technology. Sikkens conceptualizes and designs custom applications for many professional industries from health care to banking and has the ability to explain the details in a way all can understand. Article edited by Gretchen Winkler.
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