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Revolt Newsletter 111


Revolt news 111

Text version

1. The second pylon on Picton-Shipton was raised 17.1.02. Planning Condition 11 requires that all work takes place in dry weather and when the soil is in a dry state. It was wet on 17th. BBC TV filmed Revolt members earlier on, at the "Pylons Kill" tank by the A19 near Osmotherley. The second pylon is #128, smaller than and next to the first one #129 erected before Christmas.

2. Further to Lord Ezra's letter to the Times 9.1.02 (see revolt news109.5) I sent a letter dated 17.1.02 which is at Appendix 1 below.

3. North Yorks Police TETRA system is live. Alasdair Philips writes in Powerwatch News (a subsection of Electromagnetic Hazard & Therapy, Vol. 12, No. 2) about the NRPB report on TETRA in Documents of the NRPB Vol. 12 No. 2, 13.11.01. (I trust it is a coincidence both are Vol. 12 No. 2.) After getting it wrong about when the signals were pulsed, which makes it more dangerous, NRPB still try to talk it down, but Alasdair's main concern is not so much the masts as the people using the handsets. He says the handsets do pulse strongly and the policemen are being used as guinea pigs risking brain tumours which might take 10 to 20 years to develop. For details of the Yorkshire system see http://www.ypn.co.uk/scripts/editorial2.cgi?cid=4&aid=432094 

4. Other topics in this latest Electromagnetic Hazard & Therapy include the California Report with Prof Henshaw's summary, and a short review by Anne Silk of Documents of the NRPB, 2001; 12:4 on the subject of EMF and Neuro-degenerative disease. See http://www.em-hazard-therapy.com 

5. A retired engineer Peter Wood, living in the North York Moors, has pioneered a domestic heat pump system to heat his house. It works by extracting heat from the ample water in a local stream, using reverse refrigeration, so the stream gets colder while the house, at a higher temperature, gets warmer. The amount of energy needed to work the heat pump is only about a third of the heat acquired, so it reduces his heating bills by two-thirds. There are only a handful of such domestic schemes in England, but the method is used more widely to heat swimming pools, and is much more common in Scandinavia and Germany. Another sign for the future.

6. Press articles at Appendix 2 below show new strong research linking magnetic fields with miscarriage. The risk of miscarriage is doubled or trebled under exposure to common peak magnetic fields well within the range experienced near powerlines. Even NRPB recognises the importance of this work. Thanks to Alasdair Philips and Denis Henshaw for passing this on.

7. Banks are holding back from financing energy companies in the wake of the Enron affair (Sunday Times 23.12.01). The syndicate behind the Teesside power station (TPL), thought to be led by Barclays Capital, is believed to be sitting on losses of nearly 1 billion pounds. There are contractual problems as Enron was contracted to buy power from TPL. The syndicate would like to sell but prices of power stations have fallen dramatically. So it is not yet clear when or if TPL will be sold as a going concern.

8. Accountancy Age 17.1.02 has a front page article "New Enron blow hits Andersen", suggesting that Enron's auditors might lose big business after the Enron audit scandal. Andersens might merge with one of its Big Five rivals. Andersens' admitted shredding of client documents id described as "shocking". One senior partner is quoted "people are after blood; they don't just want capture, they want execution". Lord Wakeham could face disciplinary action from the accountants' professional body ICAEW over his involvement in the Enron affair. He is to face the US Senate.

9. Senior county councillors are expected to agree to use 100,000 pounds from the authority's own budget on the four Railtrack-owned bridge structures because of fears that they pose an unacceptable risk to both road and rail users. There is a dispute on whether NYCC or Railtrack should be responsible. See http://www.ypn.co.uk/scripts/editorial2.cgi?cid=4&aid=432789 

10. Hambleton DC confirm that the NGC appeals against the Kirby Sigston access refusals were upheld by the Planning Inspectorate about a month ago. Those accesses are therefore appoved. It is the Inspectorate's responsibility to notify affected people but the relevant landowners have not yet been notified. The Inspectorate accepted most of the conditions which Hambleton sought to apply. The papers are at Stonecross. Hambleton will send a copy to the two main landowners affected.

APPENDIX 1 Sir, Energy Generation

Lord Ezra (Times letters 9.1.02) argued for small distributed generation and against large remote power stations. The left-leaning Institute for Public Policy Research made the same case in its recent report "Power for the People".

Yet the 50-mile second Yorkshire 400 kV power line, just starting to be built, will do exactly the opposite - promote more surplus large power stations in the far north to serve net demand in the south. It's a dinosaur in the making.

The extra energy which will be wasted in remote generation and long- distance transmission, resulting from this line operating even at half its 4GW capacity, has a wholesale value of some 500 million pounds per year every year. That is avoidable waste, as Lord Ezra says.

Yours, Mike O'Carroll, Chairman of Revolt, www.revolt.co.uk


Kitchen appliances linked to miscarriage By Robert Uhlig, Technology Correspondent (Filed: 10/01/2002)


STRONG magnetic fields produced by trains and household appliances such as vacuum cleaners and food mixers increase the risk of miscarriage by up to three times, according to a new study.

The National Radiological Protection Board - Britain's advisory body on radiation - said the American study needed to be taken seriously, although further work was needed. "If true, there would have to be precautionary advice to pregnant women," said a spokesman.

Dr De-Kun Li, of the Kaiser Foundation Research Institute at Oakland, California, asked 1,063 women in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy to wear a device on their waists that measured magnetic field levels every 10 seconds.

He found that pregnant women exposed to peak radiation levels greater than 1.6 microteslas - 100 times less than permitted by NRPB guidelines - were nearly twice as likely to miscarry, New Scientist reported. Those who experienced high peak fields were three times as likely to miscarry.

Dr Li said this second finding was another confirmation that the increase in miscarriages "was due to electromagnetic fields". The team did not examine which appliances were producing the strong fields, but devices with powerful motors are known to be the worst culprits.

Vacuum cleaners and drills emit around 20 microteslas - more than 12 times higher than the critical level in the study. Food mixers give off around 10. Radiation within 70ft of a 400,000 volt pylon as used by the National Grid is eight microteslas.

Dr Li speculated that high levels of radiation might cause miscarriages by subtly disrupting cell-to-cell communication.

======================================================================El Electrical threat to unborn babies

Stuart Millar, technology correspondent Thursday January 10, 2002 The Guardian

Strong magnetic fields produced by some electrical appliances may increase the risk of miscarriage, according to an American study. Scientists in California claim to have found a strong link between miscarriage levels and exposure to alternating magnetic fields of the sort produced by appliances such as hairdryers, shavers and vacuum cleaners.

While previous studies on the effect of low frequency electromagnetic fields on miscarriage have been inconclusive, the scientists, led by epidemiologist De-Kun Li of the Kaiser Research Foundation, claim that this may be because average exposures rather than peak values were examined.

Previous studies measured average exposure levels using a meter fixed in the middle of the room. But in the latest study, reported today in New Scientist magazine, almost 1,000 women in the San Francisco area, all in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy, were asked to wear a meter round their waist for 24 hours to measure the varying exposures to different magnetic fields.

The researchers found that women exposed to peak magnetic field levels above a certain level almost doubled their chances of miscarrying. Among the 622 women who said the measuring period had represented a typical day, those who experienced high peak levels were three times as likely to have miscarriage, the study found.

Of the 717 women exposed to a high peak level, 132 suffered a miscarriage. Of the 252 women who were exposed to a maximum field below the critical level, 27 suffered a miscarriage.

According to the scientists, the findings held true after adjustment for 30 risk factors such as drug use, carrying heavy loads and previous induced abortions.

Dr Li's study, published in the journal Epidemiology, makes no mention of what was producing the magnetic fields, but certain appliances, as well as electric trains and trams, produce strong alternating magnetic fields. The key is proximity to the source, as fields drop off rapidly with distance.

Sir Richard Doll, the leading British epidemiologist whose work has consistently found no link between power lines and cancer, said: "This observation needs to be investigated and repeated. It is not something I would draw any conclusions from but equally it is not one I would be prepared to dismiss."

David Savitz, an epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina, said the study represented "state of the art research" but the interpretation of the findings might be wrong.


Mike O'Carroll


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