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//Finally, Health Effects Were Mentioned in 5G Senate Commerce Committee Hearing
February 7, 2019

Finally, Health Effects Were Mentioned in 5G Senate Commerce Committee Hearing

On February 6, for the first time health effects of 5G and wireless were mentioned in Senate Commerce Committee Meeting on 5G. The Senate Commerce Committee is the Committee entrusted in overseeing the FCC. 

I was there with less than a handful of us on July 14, 2016 when the FCC announced 5G. The same week we started our efforts to educate Congress about 5G and wireless health effects. Whenever a 5G meeting/hearing was held, we were trying to get the members of the Committee to ask even just one question about the health effects. Yesterday, February 6, two and a half years later, it finally happened.

I got a call an advocates who attended the Senate Commerce Committee meeting and he was excited to tell me that Senator Blumenthal made a comment about the health effects.

In the hearing titled Winning the Race to 5G and the Next Era of Technology Innovation in the United States Senator Blumenthal  asked, “are there any health implications? Are there any safety implications?” to the millions of the small cells that are likely to be located “close to homes, schools work places and closer and closer to the ground” . 

He mentioned  the letter that he had sent to the FCC in December, 2018 asking Commissioner Carr from the FCC to cite him the research on which the FCC relied upon to guarantee the public that 5G is safe. While we still do not have a copy of the FCC’s response, apparently according to Blumenthal, Commissioner Carr “Essentially has failed to do so” and said he referred him to the FDA. In regard to the FDA website Blumenthal said: “if you go to the FDA website, pretty unsatisfactory, there is basically a cursory and superficial citations” and mocked the statement on its website saying that the FDA encourages industry to conduct research and it was on cell phones not 5G. Then he said: “I believe the American people deserve to know what the health effects are.”

Blumenthal also said: “We are flying blind here on health and safety”. That is though inaccurate.  We know that the harms of non-thermal levels of RF/Microwave radiation are proven. We have more than ample scientific evidence and unfortunately also the Human Evidence which is in epidemic scale as the 5G Appeal states. We are flying blind but, to a definite greater disaster. 

To watch the video of the hearing PRESS HERE. Blumenthal starts at 2:04:00

To watch ONLY the part where Blumenthal Speaks, PRESS HERE

Since the FCC and the FDA didn’t provide answers he followed the FDA recommendation and asked industry – panelists “how much money has the industry provided for independent research on biological effects? Shouldn’t we scientifically ascertain the health effects? ” One of the panelists replied, “we rely on the expert agencies. There are no industry backed studies underway.  This new infrastructure is designed to be low powered, low interference.”    

So the FDA relies on industry and industry relies on the FDA…how long will this mockery of the American people will continue?

Senator Wicker (R-MISS) who is the new Chairman of the Committee (replaced Sen. Thune (R-SD)) summarized the hearing by mentioning the need to protect privacy but in response to Blumenthal’s comments on health Wicker read a quote from the National Cancer Institute, saying the research shows there is no consistent evidence that non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation increases cancer risk. I wonder why he didn’t mention the Government’s own study, the NTP study the biggest and most expensive study on this issue which found CLEAR EVIDENCE of cancer and DNA damage. 

Interestingly, the FCC did not appear in front of the Committee only industry was there. It is unusual. Considering the bad media the FCC has been getting following the House Commerce Committee accusing the FCC of Colluding with Industry and considering the municipalities lawsuit could it be that the Senate Commerce Committee (or industry which likely was involved in arranging this hearing) thought the FCC presence will contaminate the efforts to push 5G? 

Now we will have to see who will be the next member of the Committee who will do the right thing and speak the truth

Additional Links:

Sen. Blumenthal Press Release

Sen. Bluementhal Letter to the FCC from Dec 3, 2018

FCC Commissioner Carr’s response letter to Sen. Blumenthal from Dec 17, 2018

A Full Transcript of Blumenthal’s Comeents:

Mr. Blumenthal:
Mr. Chairman, thank you for having this hearing. We’ve heard from a lot of witnesses, from you today and others previousy, about the very important potential of 5G technology. It promises to bring us a new era of connectivity with Internet speeds as much as five times faster than what we have today, with much lower latency. And that’s all a good thing, but 5G, as you well know, also uses higher frequency waves that don’t travel as far and will rely on a network of hundreds of thousands — potentially millions — of small cell sites. And the question then is: are there any health implications, any public safety implications, to those additional sites that are likely to be located close to homes, schools, workplaces, and closer and closer to the ground? Correct?
Mr. Gillen:
Correct, Senator. Yes.
Mr. Blumenthal:
So, in December of 2018, I sent a letter to FCC Commissioner Carr asking him to cite for me recent scientific studies demonstrating the safety of this technology: what research has been done, where has it been published and compiled. He has, (inaudible), failed to do so and just echoed the general statements of the FDA — which shares regulatory responsibility for cell phones with the FCC. If you go to the FDA website, pretty unsatisfactory. There basically is a cursory and superficial citation to existing scientific data saying, quote, “The FDA has urged the cell phone industry to take a number of steps, including support additional research on possible biological effects of radiofrequency fields for the type of signal emitted by cell phone.” I believe that Americans deserve to know what the health effects are, not to prejudge what scientific studies may show, and they deserve also a commitment to do the research on the outstanding question. So my question for… for you, particularly, Mr. Gillen, and Mr. Berry: how much money has the industry committed to supporting additional independent research? I stress independent research. Is that independent research ongoing? Has any been completed? Where can consumers look for it? And we’re talking about research on the biological effects of this new technology.
Mr. Gillen:
Thank you, Senator. And I thank you for your focus on the issue. Safety is paramount. And as you alluded to, we rely on the expert agencies, rely on the findings of the FDA and others, as to the requirements to keep all of us safe. There are no industry-backed studies, to my knowledge right now. I’m happy to visit with you as to what opportunities you think there needs to be more studies. And we’re always for more science. We also rely on what the scientists tell us.
Mr. Blumenthal:
So essentially, the answer to my question how much money: zero.
Mr. Gillen:
I can certainly follow up with you, Senator. To my knowledge there’s no active studies being backed by industry today.
Mr. Blumenthal:
Anybody else know of industry commitments to back research, fund it, support it, to ascertain, scientifically, the health effects?
Mr. Berry:
Senator, I’m not aware either. But I do know that with small cells, especially, you’re going to have lower power levels. And of course, as from a carrier perspective you want to be able to manage interference so that that interference is the lowest interference possible. So I would… I would think that some of those studies, or some of that information, could be utilized in… in looking at the health consequences. But no, I’m not aware of any….
Mr. Blumenthal:
So there really is no research ongoing. We’re kind of flying blind here — so far as health and safety is concerned. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.


Dafna Tachover