British Society for Ecological Medicine
The BSEM has existed as a professional body since 1983 and is the principal UK organisation of doctors and allied health practitioners specialising in ecological medicine. Its aims are:
Notes on the conference – Michelle Berriedale-Johnson. Please click on the links for the individual presentations.
An Overview of Non-Ioinising Radiation Health Effects Dr Erica Mallery-Blythe
Massive Predicted Effects of 5G in the Context of Safety Guideline Failures Professor Martin Pall
Why Modern Telecommunication Microwaves are more damaging that other types of Man-made EMFs Dr Dimitris Panagopolous
Professor Lennart Hardell The Environment and Cancer Research Foundation
Reducing Personal Exposure Christian Blank
How to care for suffering patients Dr Peter Ohnsorge
Moving Forward Dr Erica Mallery-Blythe
The mass roll out of 5G offends against every article of the Nuremberg code Blog post based on comments made at the conference.
Dr Erica Mallery-Blythe – An overview of Non-Ionising Radiation Health Effects
Dr Erica Mallery Blythe – Trustee of PHiRE, trustee for the Radiation Research Trust, a board Member of the Cellular Phone Task Force (CPTF) and Medical Advisor for Electrosensitivity UK (ES-UK). See this article in the Telegraph for more about Dr Mallery Blythe.
Dr Mallery Blythe’s speciality was trauma medicine until, ten years ago, she turned her attention to the biological effects of non ionising radiation. Since 2015 she has focused entirely on research through her group PHiRE.
Every living thing is electromagnetically sensitive.
Electromagnetic energy is a fundamental presence in life – human, animal and plant. Every living thing is electromagnetically sensitive. The issue is whether, when that sensitivity is ramped up, it becomes damaging. In other words, does the creation of the massive amounts of man-made pulsed electromagnetic radiation needed to power our interconnected world present a serious risk to human, animal or plant health?
The current guidelines suggest that the only harm that can come from excess radiation is from the heat that it can create. However, a huge and ever growing body of research would suggest that high intensity heating is irrelevant. The damage is actually done by very low intensity radiation which, effectively, interferes with the way that our cells behave. As a result, radiation can affect every aspect of our health.
The effects of this low intensity radiation are not linear (making research a good deal more difficult) and are cumulative. Moreover, electromagnetic radiation (EMR) can cross react with chemicals, and metals creating constant ‘hotspots’.
Ninety percent of recent research papers (both animal and human) suggest that the result of this radiation is oxidative stress – leading to systemic pathophysiology (any part of the body can be affected) affecting the central nervous system, reproductive systems, mental health, vulnerability to cancer etc.
The young are particularly at risk. Because of their relatively small size, radiation can penetrate much further into their bodies. Radiation from a mobile phone, for example, can penetrate 85% of the way into the brain of a small child but only approximately 20% of the way into an adult brain.
Current guidelines are completely inadequate to protect against existing levels of radiation. The introduction of 5G will ramp up that radiation exponentially.
Massive Predicted Effects of 5G in the Context of Safety Guideline Failures
Professor Martin Pall, Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry and Basic Medical Sciences, Washington State University
In very simplistic terms, what goes in and out of our cells is controlled by what are called ‘voltage gates’ in the plasma membrane surrounding the cells. These control primarily the amounts of sodium, potassium, chloride and calcium which can enter the cell. But it is the calcium channel that seems to be particularly sensitive to EMRs.
The disruption of the Voltage Gate Calcium Channels (VGCC) by pulsed radiation causes an increase in the flow of intercellular calcium. While problematic in itself, this also leads to an excess of nitric oxide – both of which lead to oxidative stress, inflammation and mitochondrial dysfunction.
Pulsed radiation (the type of radiation needed to carry information) actually ratchets up this effect. And the more information that the radiation is required to carry the more frequent the pulsing and therefore the greater the potential damage.
This potential for damage is further increased by the fact that pulses are modulated. They can vary randomly from low to high and can be extremely short – literally nanoseconds. 5G will produce trillions of nanosecond pulses.
If electromagnetic pulses have the same polarity (in layman’s terms, they face the same way) they become super powerful; if they have a different polarity they effectively cancel each other out. But pairs of nanosecond pulses have the same polarity.
Different cell types can respond differently to EMR and some will respond at much lower levels of radiation than others. Stem cells, for example, are super sensitive to electromagnetic fields and radiation – and children have a much higher ratio of stem cells than adults.
Current Guidelines and current research
The current guidelines completely ignore these effects despite a massive body of research suggesting that they exist. As of now, at least 20 independent studies show significant harm to:
* May 2019 Study published in Andrology - A significant proportion of young Swiss men display suboptimal semen quality with only 38% having sperm concentration, motility, and morphology values that met WHO semen reference criteria.
**Possibly only coincidental but, the Santa Anita racetrack in California is surrounded by no less than 36 different mobile phone antennae. In 2019 there were 29 horse deaths from either bone breakage or cardiac arrest. Could there be a link?
Although there has been little research done as yet, in autistic people there appears to have been imperfect synapse formation in the developing brain – but synapse formation is impacted by imperfectly regulated calcium.
And health aside
The energy use of 5G is estimated to be between 5% and 20% of our total energy use right now.
In ecological terms. Trees have a much greater surface area that humans so their cells will be more affected by changes effected by radiation. And one of the ways in which radiation affects tree cells is to increase their levels of highly flammable turpenes. More forest fires? More loss of trees?
Why Modern Telecommunication Microwave EMFs are more damaging than other types of Man-made EMFs
Dr Dimitris Panagopolous, National Center for Scientific Research "Demokritos", Athens
Dr Panagopolous emphasised yet again that all cellular functions are controlled by weak electrical currents so how would they not be influenced by external electrical currents?
Polarisation and variation
Solar radiation is with us always but, it is not polarised – its currents do not operate on the same plane and do not oscillate. As a result, they cancel each other out. However, man-made radiation always operates on the same plane and is totally polarised which is why it interferes with our own electrical fields.
With each generation of mobile telephony the pulsing becomes more frequent, so as to carry more information, and the variation in the fields becomes more intense. It is this constant variation that appears to cause the most damage.
Research on fruit flies showed very significant DNA damage and cell death in the ovaries of fruit flies exposed to mobile phones (72% damage) while the damage to ovaries exposed to power lines and other electrical fields was under 10%. There was similarly little damage when the ovaries were exposed to starvation, dehydration, a range of chemicals and other non electrical stressors.
The crucial element in the mobile phone signal, which is not shared with any of the other electrical stressors was the extreme variability of their polarised and pulsing signals, mainly due to the large unpredictability of the intensity changes.
This concerns not only mobile phones but all types of microwave electromagnetic fields used in modern telecommunications. With each new generation the signal variability (and consequent bioactivity) increases due to the increasing amount of variable information (speech, text, images, video, internet) that it is carrying.
One of the reasons why so many industry studies of mobile telephones show no evidence of harm is because they are done with simulated signals, not with ‘live’ mobile phones . But simulated signals are not varied. 98% of the studies done with ‘real life signals’ produce effects.
Mobile Phones, wireless communication and health – the evidence
Professor Lennart Hardell The Environment and Cancer Research Foundation
In 2011 WHO classed mobile phone use as a class 2b carcinogen (a ‘possible’ human carcinogen). But there is now clear evidence both from the US National Toxicology Program study and the more recent Ramizzini mice study that it should be classed as Group 1 – carcinogenic to humans.
Initially, when aerials were used on phone, the exposure was mainly around the ear area which is where gliomas were found. As the aerials have moved down the phone and are now at the base of the phone and therefore held near the neck and thyroid, there is evidence of a significant increase in cancer of the thyroid.
In Sweden the numbers of brain and eye tumours have increased significantly from 2003-2018, along with the incidence of tinnitus, headache and hearing loss.
Because 5G has a much shorter reach, there will need to be many more base stations – up to 800 per square kilometre. And to get the greatest coverage, beams may well be crossing each other which will create hot spots of doubled or trebled intensity – many of which may be in buildings or within bodies if those buildings or bodies happen to be in the way.
There will therefore be massively increased exposure which could directly affect the skin, eyes and human sweat glands which can act as mini antennas into the body.
Also worth noting. The more apps a mobile phone carries the more communication it will do as each app is constantly checking for updates.
Reducing Personal Exposure
Christian Blank – Lecturer – EMF training courses at the Institute of Building Biology and Sustainability, Rosenheim, Germany
Introduction of 5G will enormously increase radio frequency levels in the environment both because of the increased number of base stations but also because of a major increase in bandwidth.
In 2/3/4G power dropped at around 90 degrees; with 5G it will drop at around 12 degree. Beams will also be ‘bundled’ to provide higher power to the user but will irradiate anyone who happens to be in the way. And since the masts will be at street level rather than on the top of high buildings, almost everyone will be in the way most of the time.
Outdoors versus indoors
There is not a great deal you can do to shield yourself from radiation outdoors but you can indoors. This is actually much more important as you are much closer to the source so are subject to maximum emissions.
Shielding the walls of one’s house can be very helpful although you have to be aware of the electrical field’s source. Thermal insulation glazing, brick, shielding paint and shielded plasterboard are all relatively effective – wood is not. Many forms of shielding also need to be properly grounded.
Other ‘good habits’ –
How to care for suffering patients
Dr Peter Ohnsorge - Founding and managing chairman of the European Academy for Environmental Medicine (EUROPEAM)
For decades doctors specializing in Clinical Environmental Medicine have been aware of a growing number of patients suffering from multisystem illnesses such as electrosensitivity (EHS).
However, clinicians in medical institutions and practising physicians do not recognise that these chronic illnesses have their root in the environment. Their approach, the traditional reductionist scientific approach, fails because it does not take into account the complexity of multisystem illnesses such as EHS, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) and Chronic Fatigue syndrome (CFS).
To address these illnesses, complex diagnoses and therapeutic strategies are needed, but when these are in place, a full recovery, or at least a dramatic improvement in the patient's condition, is possible.
Strategies, to reduce and control.
Reduce the total body burden by:
Environmental illnesses are never simple
Environmental illnesses are never simple; they are always multi-system as all systems, physical and psychological, interact.
Exposure to toxins and triggers can be historical and even at second hand. For example a baby could be affected in utero by toxic paints that the mother had used to decorate its room while she was pregnant.
A structured, complex diagnosis based on detailed history as well as physical tests, is crucial before therapy begins as early interventions without a full understanding of the case can cause harm.
Dr Mallery Blythe said:
‘Many other countries have chosen to adopt more biologically calculated safety limits with orders of magnitude below those of the UK. Some, such as France, have already banned or restricted wifi in educational settings accommodating children within safer environments.’
‘Many resources from apparently credible groups such as Public Health England (PHE) and even the WHO, are grossly out of date for a subject that is moving so fast. Additionally there are often conflicts of interest within these groups and many public statements do not withstand scientific scrutiny. Specifically, the AGNIR report that was used to construct current UK policy has been called “inaccurate”, “biased” and “misleading”.’
‘Age, gender, underlying genetics, EHS and co-morbidity all effect the vulnerable individuals. Pregnant women and their foetuses are especially vulnerable and there is potential for inherited damage to their offspring – even if the progeny themselves are not irradiated. This raises serious concerns regarding irreversible damage to future generations. Multiple factors lead to greater risk from exposure in children.’
‘There are also clear human rights issues involved, especially for vulnerable groups. Any individual who wishes not to be exposed in their home, place of work or public building is given no choice. The application of the Precautionary Principle has been called for by many credible, professional organisations – in order to protect health and the right to life first and foremost but also to protect the economy given the already apparent escalating costs of associated illnesses.’
‘We are now past the time for precaution and protection of vulnerable groups, in particular, is an emergency.’
Random points raised in the Q&A:
Blog post based on comments made at the conference.
The 5G Appeal was prepared in 2017 by scientist and doctors who are urgently calling for the EU to halt the roll out of 5G due to serious potential health effects from this new technology.
5G will substantially increase exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) on top of the 2G, 3G, 4G, Wi-Fi, etc. for telecommunications already in place. RF-EMF has been proven to be harmful for humans and the environment.
The Appeal primarily urge the EU to:
So far the EU’s response has been to refer back to the evidence from ICNIRP that ‘exposure to electromagnetic fields does not represent a health risk, if it remains below the limits set by Council Recommendation 1999/519/EC1.’