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SeanD
Community Manager
Community Manager
5,727 Views
Message 1 of 6

5G – facts about health concerns

Hi, Everyone,

We’ve received some questions via social media around environmental and health issues associated with 5G.

A lot of this concern is based on incorrect information that’s being circulated.  Here are the facts about 5G, and why no one needs to be concerned about their health.

 

  • Mobile and WiFi networks have been in use in the UK and around the world since the 1980s, and there is no evidence of harmful effects. 5G uses the same group of radio waves that have been tested and in use for decades.

 

  • These radio waves are ‘non-ionizing’. This means that they do not have the energy to change the DNA structure of a cell. This means that these radio waves don’t create cancerous cells.

 

  • Ionizing radio waves include things like beta rays, gamma rays and x-rays, which do have the energy to change cell structures. That’s why there are lots of measures in place to protect you when you go for an x-ray in the hospital.

 

  • The radio waves used in mobile networks can cause a small increase in body temperature – that’s why we have strict guidelines in place to ensure that members of the public can never get too close to our masts.

 

  • 5G in the UK will use waves at 3.4-3.8GHz in 2019.  In the future, 5G may use lower spectrum like 700MHz, or higher spectrum like 26GHz or 32GHz.  These higher waves are known as millimetre waves (or ‘mmWaves’). Some people are saying that these higher waves are dangerous and that they haven’t been researched. Neither of these things is true.

 

  • mmWaves are completely safe – they are non-ionizing, and there has been research into them since 1895! These frequencies are used in the UK for carrying mobile data between some masts, and there has never been any adverse effect – on people or the environment.

 

‘5G Facts’

 

  • 5G networks in the UK in 2019 will use 3.4-3.8GHz spectrum

 

  • 5G could use frequencies between 700MHz and 86GHz in the next ten years

 

  • Waves used by 5G in 2019 are even lower than the WiFi routers in most houses

 

  • All waves used for mobile networks and WiFi are ‘non-ionizing’, which means they don’t create cancerous cells

 

 

 ‘5G Myths’

 

  • ‘5G will cause cancer.’ This is not true – the radio waves that 5G will use do not have the energy to change the structure of a cell, so cannot create cancerous cells

 

  • ‘Trees will be cut down to allow 5G networks to be built.’ This is not true – we won’t be cutting down any trees for 5G

 

  • ‘Birds will be affected by the frequencies being used for 5G.’ This is not true – the frequencies being used for 5G have been in use in the UK for many years, with no adverse effects

 

  • ‘There will be a 5G antenna every 10-20 homes across the countryside.’ This is not true – 5G ‘small cells’ will be used in densely populated cities, but not in this volume and not in rural areas

 

I really hope that I've been able to answer your questions here, but if you have any more comments or questions please tap "Reply" below and we'll all do our best to help.

Cheers

Sean

5 REPLIES 5
FranT
Beginner
2,510 Views
Message 2 of 6

Re: 5G – facts about health concerns - Hmm.

Nearly a year without a reply. That can’t be right, let’s sort that!

"Facts about health concerns" - sounds kind of authoritative doesn't it?! Counter these lies with 'facts'. Assuming the position of righteousness, rather than just discuss your 'arguments' against the health concerns, which would be both more honest and more humble, not to mention more accurate.

Whilst I am not someone who would claim that 5G is harmful, I certainly have my suspicions that it may well be. Most of the points you make are not "facts" but arguments, in other words they are not empirical truths, just opinions which in some case have merit and are backed by evidence, but others are not.

I could cite the fact that there have been many studies in various places from Sweden to Germany which found higher incidences of leukemia and other forms of cancer around cellular masts, and that's long before 4g let alone 5g. Of course other studies claim to show no such risks. Just like much of modern science, one side push some kind of holy "truth", while a quiet but numerous group of other fully fledged and utterly authoritative scientists both claim differently, and can prove differently.

I have personally seen the effects and dangers of non-ionising radiation, which is another "go to" argument of those who would have us believe the fact it is "non ionising" automatically means it can't harm you. That's like saying a knife can't hurt you, because a gun can. No. Ionising radiation is certainly much more harmful, but non-ionising radiation is demonstrably dangerous, in fact lethal.

A good friend of mine (a 70 year PHD scientist (biology), who left science due to the corruption of it, despite 2 groundbreaking inventions to his name I might add) told me just how dangerous non ionising radiation can be. When he worked on a nuclear powered submarine during the cold war, one silly chap stayed up on the deck when the communications mast went up and broadcast a message to report position. He didn't hear the regular warning which is sounded, and he fried like bacon in a few seconds as he was standing right in front of the transmitter. Yes, my friend has a microwave in his kitchen! But no, he doesn’t stand near it when it’s cooking, even if only to avoid the “heating effect”, IF that’s the only possible risk we currently ‘know about’.

The usual retort to this is "well yes of course at massive power levels it’s dangerous“, which should do two things for any intelligent and rational person:

1. Confirm that non-ionising radiation is not only potentially harmful, but CAN be LETHAL.
2. Confirm that this is not a binary discussion, it is a sliding scale with "SAFE" on one end, and "LETHAL" on the other.

So... the non-ionising argument is fallacious in my view , and is often deliberately used to mislead. Like when people say "radio waves you listen to so you can hear the Wimbledon Final... that's the same stuff! That never hurt anyone!". It's intellectual dishonest at best. A microwave oven is also non-ionising radiation, I seem to remember the advice being never to stand to close and to check the seal is good etc etc. Why, if it's "harmless"? It isn't, we all know it. But it certainly isn’t ionising so it won’t mess up your DNA or cause cancers at least in the ways we currently KNOW about.
The only thing we do not know is HOW MUCH of it begins to cause health risks. And since the entirety of global business, science, financial markets, the internet, and governments all rely so heavily and ever more and every faster communications, there is ZERO meaningful effort or desire to go and take a proper scientific look at this subject. ALL the money goes the other way, of course. All scientific studies need funding, and this is where science in general has a hard time avoiding being corrupted. Quid Pro Quo.

Who has money to throw a few million at a science project? Groups of mums with mildly unwell children living near masts? Someone who lives with permanent headaches for many years until unplugging their WiFi router and magically finding the headaches go away, along with sleep disorders, lethargy, nausea, dietary inconsistences and a myriad of other minor but annoying oddities. Or the global multi national billion dollar companies and governments with a massive vested interest in a certain 'result'.

These organisations would really not want the world to wake up one day and have to face the idea that this stuff may be harmful, it would COLLAPSE economies around the world to cease or begin limiting its use. But it would bankrupt them to continue doing so against the evidence and later face law suits like Thalidomide or other similar scandals. So the solution is to keep creating 'evidence' to outweight the counter evidence. And of course that means they could be RIGHT, and it's harmless. I am not suggesting anyone is lying. But scientists are experts at gearing research towards one result, and making sure they obtain it. Just vary factors until the desired outcome is achieved, then go to press. Everyone is happy. But often wrong, and I could name countless studies which are known now to have been corrupt, going back to the 40s-60s with tobacco research, a similarly HUGE industry in its time.

I don't go in for anecdotes so this is not presented as evidence. but just as an example of the reasons why so many people do have concerns (and I agree there is a LOT of misinformation and paranoia out there)... I know a woman who had trouble with migraines along with her son, for around 15 years. She went to a huge list of medical professionals, both NHS and private. She tried dieticians, eventually even homeopaths (what a joke that was!). Long story short, nothing helped. One day she moved house, and within a few weeks of moving in she had no more migraines and nor did her son. This is a smart intelligent woman who had a pretty impressive career as a solicitor.  Far from a wacko, conspiracy theorist, or paranoid type. She is one of the most rational people I have ever known. The Wifi router in the new home was at the far end of the house to the bedrooms, and the walls were about two foot thick granite. Eventually she suspected that (but refused to believe it at first). She then moved the router to just outside their bedrooms. No headaches, for 2 weeks. But then the migraines turned up again. She removed it, and around 10-20 days later, the headaches stopped. She got rid of wifi altogether after that, and neither of them have had the problems ever again.

Even today, being such a rational person, she refuses to say "it was the wifi" to anyone else, as she knows this doesn't prove it beyond any doubt by any means. But I know for a fact she believes it, what else is she to believe given her experience? If you touch a hot plate, do you touch it again?

I know another mother of three who had a terrible time sleeping, night terrors and similar stuff. Same thing happened, turned off wifi and it went away (not for a good 2-3 months though). Another anecdote, which proves nothing. But these types of anecdotes (of which there are a huge number out there) should be the thing which inspires research. But it doens't, as who the heck is going to fund that type of research? Yeah, let's go and see if we can test wifi to see if it can cause sleep problems or headaches, never mind behaviour disorders in children (which are massively on the rise) or anything else. It doesn't happen.

Instead we just find a few studies to 'prove' that it's all hunky dory, we pass off all the studies which found the opposite as "conspiracy theorists" (yet they are anything but), and we keep on growing our economies and expanding our technology. Whilst I can not state for certain (and nobody can) that it is, or is not, harmful... I would make a very strong bet that 50 years from now, this will be like tobacco, Thalidomide, or the many others. Or maybe cancer will just keep rising without anyone wondering why (even though most of the reason I think was actually the awful atmospheric nuclear testing conducted over half a century ago).

Remember hydrogenated fat being fed to everyone for decades? Now look at how many arteries are clogged with pure plastic, which is EXACTLY what “hydrogenated fat” is (such a pretty name!). On a molecular level, it is plastic. Doctors had no issue with it, because they didn’t know, and because the food industry had no business in committing suicide by either warning or even studying the risks of eating plastic over many years.

Over the past 10 years alone, I have had many courses of anti biotics. Every single time I get different instructions. “Always take the full course”, next time “no you should stop once you have no symptoms for 24 hours”, next time back to “take the full course”. I once had to call in a doctor for a second opinion (after so many varied advices) and the two doctors had an argument about which journal they should “go by”!!

These are not Gods, and nor are “Scientists”. They are people. People can lie, they can be wrong, they can be motivated by things other than our health, and whilst most aren’t, enough are corruptible or just wilfully ignorant to focus on what matters to them, career and promotion. There are countless examples of medical advice/knowledge not only being wrong, but being known to be wrong, and killing people. As far back as drinking mercury, and beyond. Look into mercury in tooth fillings, that’s a whole other example which is as shocking as all the others. Mercury is one of the most toxic substances on the planet, it makes lead look like a Waldorf salad! Yet for how many years were they sticking it in people’s mouths, of all places?!

Questioning is good. Unfailing obedience is for dogs and fools. 

Cancer is generally a disease of old age. Old aged people cost the state money, having previously put money into the system. Does it make sense to keep people alive as long as possible? I mean financial sense for people’s who job is purely to do the best they can with budgets and treasury purses? If you think that sounds like "conspiracy theory" - take some time to read a book by an eminent and reputable scientist called Samuel Epstein who wrote what should have been a world-changing book called "The Politics of Cancer". Read that, then tell me this is all paranoid theoretical rubbish. It isn't. It may not be correct, but it sure as heck isn't irrational or unfounded.

Scepticism of non-ionising radiation is just sensible. Just as is written in every single microwave handbook or safety data sheet. Crikey, even walkie talkies come with the same messages now and suggest not using close to the body if it can be avoided. If it's harmless, why not? It is NOT harmless. We just don't know HOW harmful it is, and it may well be hardly harmful at all, but without reading both sides, I really think most people should question whether they have taken the necessary effort to have a position they can call rational and informed. Fine, read all the studies saying 5G is safer than water, go for it. But don't go cheating yourself out of the Swedish and German studies of cancer and other illnesses associated with cell tower sites. Get all the info, then decide. I firmly believe if everyone read that, instead of simplified and somewhat misleading posts like the one above, far more people would have serious concerns just like many scientists do. Scientists who, I might add, are usually swiftly kicked out of their universities or research labs for even remotely questioning such matters.

You mention Xrays. That's a good example, of both our positions. It suits yours as you're right to say that they are very careful with exposure levels etc now because of the known risks. But it suits my argument too, as for many years even just in my own life I have avoided ionising radiation wherever possible. Whether it was me saying I didn't want one for a minor fracture (for which, if confirmed, the treatment would have been "just go gentle on it and let it heal in its own time") or dentists trying to routinely throw my kids into a prophylactic xray just to "have a look what's going on".
In the latter case, my resistance was not only attacked, ridiculed and scoffed at by 'high priests of moral fortitude' (dentists) some of whom appear to think they are nuclear physicists, but I was once threatened by an NHS dentist with being "reported to the social services"... yes, for refusing an unnecessary X-Ray on my child only months after the previous unnecessary one. Funnily enough, they do NOT do it now, but my dentist has long since retired, and I am left wanting an apology because the entire dental system now approaches the X-ray subject with the same CARE that I asked them to all those years ago, when I was ridiculed and even called "paranoid". So my point is, everyone always believes the current knowledge is gospel, when we so often find it wasn't, many years later when those egg-spurts have retired.

I have three times been told by a radiologist that X Ray is "harmless". That is categorically untrue and demonstrably false. Yet they get away with these lies? I was once talked down to by a radiologist for merely commenting (in response to "its harmless") "If that's the case, why are you going behind a protective screen?" The answer I got was the one you'd expect... "Because I get a lot more exposure". To which my reply was "if something is harmless, as you said, then NO amount of exposure can become harmful.". With that I got the snappy short treatment as I have come to expect whenever you question these high priests who are sworn to "First do no harm", yet even until recently did thousands of X Rays for no reason whatsoever (prophylactic). In the case of dentists, it's great stuff, because an X Ray might find a "job to do", and jobs mean money and growth, and everyone loves a bit of that. Meanwhile cancer is on the rise (I don't claim this is the reason, but it could be) and from being 1 in 20 a century or so ago, it is now nearly 1 in 2. Yet we continue to buy the claims of those with a financial motive and having us believe them.

The American Dental Association now insists on "Thyroid Collars" for all children having X Rays. Oh, only now? So all those decades gone by, the radiation was safer was it? No, it was worse (higher doses), which means the establishment irradiated millions of children with unnecessary and dangerous doses of radiation, but NOBODY pays for these past mistakes, because they are put down to "that was then". Well I don't live like that. I am not going to wait to find out the terrible truth, how people were wrong in the past, and abused their position of trust or expertise to fool me. So wherever possible, I will avoid anything remotely harmful, or even if I just think it MAY be harmful, unless of course it is absolutely necessary.

I am a mobile phone user. I like the convenience and practical benefits. I don’t believe it comes with ZERO risk of any kind. I don’t honestly think many people could say that either with their hand on heart. For instance we know there are attention span problems for children spending too much time on their screen, even Apple now forces it into their operating system to help people monitor their screen time etc. These things are great, technology is great, but taking some simple precautions are in my view a good idea and don’t mean I am paranoid, far from it as none of my slight fears/concerns are irrational. On the contrary they came from years of reading and learning, from BOTH sides of the fence.

I use technology like most people do. But for example WiFi, I don’t need it most of the time, so I don’t leave it running 24/7. It’s a minor inconvenience to turn it on/off as and when needed (I use ethernet cable as much as possible, better connection speeds too). It may not be benefitted me to do so, but I suspect it is. Either way, taking a walk in the fresh air may not be doing me any benefit in isolation, but a lifetime of it….. I have a strong belief that all of these things do accumulate over time, just like the body does, and every organ within it.

It is rational and intelligent to hear both sides. I have seen compelling evidence/research to suggest non-ionising radiation in cell phone level dosages is practically harmless. I have seen compelling evidence to the contrary. I am kind of at the point where I think some people may be sensitive to it when others aren’t, but I still have to hold my breath for 50 years to find out the TRUE effect it may or may not have. Until then, I tend to limit my exposure to such things as much as I can, without becoming a tin foil hat wearing zealot. Although I don’t see a tin foil hat wearing zealot as any more irrational or extreme than a parent who sits their child in front of a tablet all day every day, and I know some who do.

You takes your chances in this life. These are merely my choices, and I don’t begrudge anyone who makes different ones. However I do begrudge those who claim that mine are indicative of some kind of misguided mind or uninformed paranoia. I have done more reading than most people I have ever known. I may be wrong. But I ain’t uninformed and nor are my opinions.

That was rushed and I don’t have time to edit it, but it’s there just in case it might persuade someone out there (parents especially) to just pause for a second before believing every word of the above post, and go find a fully informed opinion of their own. Where would BT’s share price be without radio waves, I wonder! Not an argument as such, but a question which might explain why this post might mysteriously disappear at some point! I hope not, if we believe in free and open discussion which I certainly do. 🙂

 

NigelB72
Recognised Expert
2,491 Views
Message 3 of 6

Re: 5G – facts about health concerns - Hmm.

There was no replies but the post didn't warrant a reply as it was a factual post. Yours however does warrant a reply. The scaremongering posts about 5G are literally just that, they're utter rubbish made up by conspiracy theorists. The same conspiracy crackpots who started spouting the same rubbish about 4G and before that 3G and before that 2G and before that 1st generation cellular technology. The truth is we are surrounded by microwaves on a daily basis from many different sources and non of them are at sufficient power levels to cause any harm to health at all...  So I'm sorry to report that you've gone to the effort of tracking down this user forum and creating an account for absolutely no reason. Please go away and get a life. This is a forum for BT customers to help each other with technical issues and not one for peddling unfounded conspiracy theories!!!

pottyperson
Distinguished Guru
Distinguished Guru
2,440 Views
Message 4 of 6

Re: 5G – facts about health concerns - Hmm.

That looks like a good post, @NigelB72, though I must admit that the previous one is hot favourite for my 2020 TLDR award. 

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Ricardowalton
Beginner
2,143 Views
Message 5 of 6

Re: 5G – facts about health concerns

 Dr I can understand why you need to minimise concerns about the evident potential health risk associated with 5G. 

You must stop falsifying as fact the answers you give in your thread. I have been a lisenced Aircraft Engineer for more than 30 years. I have been involved in repairing weather radar systems durimg this period. In every aircraft maintenance manual I have ever read it states do not operate the system in front of buildings or people, as it can seriously damage your health. 

The frequencies used by weather radar are within the same band as 5G mobile networks notably 2 to 4GHZ. Standing in front of an operating weather radar system will cause proven sterility amongst other problems.

you would probably argue that weather radar systems use much higher power than your 5G network. This may be true, however the power outputs of of modern radar systems are much reduced than older systems. The health risks are still noted in all the maintenance manuals.

as far as 4G being safe over the last 30 years I would recommend a lecture by Dr Devra Davis entitled The truth about mobile phone& wireless radiation. I think the evidence she presents should concern everyone using a “normal” mobile phone. As for 5G, holding a small weather radar to your brain in the name of connectivity speed is definitely a genuine concern, which requires studies to be carried out.

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yorkspark
Contributor
2,112 Views
Message 6 of 6

Re: 5G – facts about health concerns


@Ricardowaltonwrote:

 Dr I can understand why you need to minimise concerns about the evident potential health risk associated with 5G. 

You must stop falsifying as fact the answers you give in your thread. And so must you. I have been a lisenced Aircraft Engineer for more than 30 years. I have been involved in repairing weather radar systems durimg this period. Good on you, what has this got to do with BT Retail?  In every aircraft maintenance manual I have ever read it states do not operate the system in front of buildings or people, as it can seriously damage your health. Are you sure that?

The frequencies used by weather radar are within the same band as 5G mobile networks notably 2 to 4GHZ. Standing in front of an operating weather radar system will cause proven sterility amongst other problems. Thats not exactly true is it! 

you would probably argue that weather radar systems use much higher power than your 5G network. This may be true, I thought you were an expert, you should know conclusively.

however the power outputs of of modern radar systems are much reduced than older systems. The health risks are still noted in all the maintenance manuals. As you have been doing this for 30 years, then you will also know this :-

The nominal output of these systems is a few hundred watts of microwave power. In general, these systems are not operating when the aircraft is on the ground. However, there may be circumstances, especially during maintenance and testing, that ground personnel may be exposed to the X-band radiation emitted by the system. There is a large database of calculated and measured hazard distances of X-band systems. The power output of weather radar is many orders of magnitude lower than fire control radar. While fire control systems have the potential to overexpose personnel, it is a common misconception that any system found in the radome of an aircraft nose is dangerous.

In the X-band region, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) C95.1 Radiofrequency Radiation Standard (1999), as well as the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists, Threshold Limit Value (2000) has an exposure limit of 10 mW/cm2 for controlled (occupational) exposures, averaged over 6 minutes. For uncontrolled (essentially public areas), the IEEE has an exposure limit of 6.67 mW/cm2, with a slightly longer averaging time. Measurements made on a typical WXR-700 system by the United States Air Force in 1996 were unable to produce levels that are above either the controlled or uncontrolled limits recommended by IEEE. Therefore, in general, it is safe to assume that these systems are incapable of overexposing personnel to recommended standards in wide use both in the United States and the rest of the world.

as far as 4G being safe over the last 30 years I would recommend a lecture by Dr Devra Davis entitled The truth about mobile phone& wireless radiation. I think the evidence she presents should concern everyone using a “normal” mobile phone. As for 5G, holding a small weather radar to your brain in the name of connectivity speed is definitely a genuine concern, which requires studies to be carried out. Yawn, this is a BT Retail customer forum, unless you have a problem, then can you bore off and take your crackpot tinhat theories elsewhere.