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Exposure to electromagnetic fields in Spain is much higher than recommended levels

Exposure to electromagnetic fields in Spain is much higher than recommended levels

Ecologistas en Acción denounces that the exposure to electromagnetic fields of people living in Spain is well above the levels recommended by numerous organizations, such as the Council of Europe.

In some cases, these recommendations are multiplied by 500, without there being a clear government action aimed at reducing them.

The Secretary of State for Digital Advancement Has published on its website the annual report on exposure of the general public to radioelectric emissions from radiocommunication stations carried out during 2019.

In the published tables it is observed that the average value of the measurements made in microwatts per square centimeter (µW / cm²) are well above the recommendations of many organizations, such as the Council of Europe: a power density of 0.01 µW / cm². In fact, there are provinces that register up to 500 times those maximum recommended levels.

According to the Secretary of State for Digital Advancement, the exposure limits to radioelectric emissions are those set in the Regulation that establishes conditions for the protection of the public radioelectric domain, restrictions on radioelectric emissions and health protection measures against radioelectric emissions (Royal Decree 1066 / 2001, of September 28) are the result of applying basic restrictions and reference levels in areas where the general public can habitually stay. But this very lax criterion is not shared by many organizations and experts.

The Ombudsman of Spain states, in its resolution of August 21, 2019, that: “Without prejudice to recommendation 1999 / 519CE of the EU Health Council, Spain is also a member of the Council of Europe and must follow the recommendations approving, including recommendation 1815 (2011) on the potential dangers of electromagnetic fields and their effects on the environment”.

This Council of Europe recommendation urges Member States, among other things, to take into account the precautionary principles and ALARA (keep exposure levels as low as possible); to take all reasonable measures to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields, particularly of children and young people; to pay special attention to electrosensitive people who suffer from intolerance syndrome to said electromagnetic fields; to carry out appropriate risk assessment procedures and improve assessment standards; and to keep electrical installations at a safe distance from homes.

The recommendation therefore requires that certain vulnerable groups take specific consideration beyond the exposure levels established for the population as a whole.

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe has repeatedly highlighted the importance of the States' commitment to preserve the environment and environmental health, as indicated in numerous letters, agreements, declarations and protocols, and warns that “the entire population is currently exposed to various levels of electromagnetic fields, levels that will continue to increase as technology advances ”.

For this reason, it recommends that the member states of the Council of Europe, as a first measure, “adopt all reasonable measures to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields, especially radio frequencies emitted by mobile phones, and especially the exposure of / children and young people who appear to be at the highest risk of head tumors ”.

But, in the opinion of Ecologists in Action, these recommendations are not taken into account by the Government when establishing the levels of exposure to which the population is subjected. It is urgent that the governments of the European Union take into account the Resolution of the European Parliament, of April 2, 2009, on health considerations related to electromagnetic fields (2008/2211 (INI)), in which it urges the Commission to review the scientific basis and the adequacy of the electromagnetic field limits set in recommendation 1999/519 / EC and report on the matter to Parliament; requests that the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Recently Identified Health Risks be the body that carry out this review.

This resolution also calls on the Member States to follow Sweden's example and recognize electrical hypersensitivity as a disability, in order to guarantee adequate protection and equal opportunities for people who suffer from it.

More information: Ecologists in Action

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