51 Earlsbrook Drive Trentham Stoke on Trent ST4 8DL
Rich Text version of letter
TRENTHAM ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION CAMPAIGN
51Earlsbrook Drive Trentham Stoke on Trent ST4 8DLDate By Hand
House of Commons
Health effects of Electric and Magnetic Fields, EMFs from Overhead Powerlines
Dear Member of Parliament
You may be aware of the growing concern of the adverse health effects of exposure to elevated levels of electric and magnet fields (EMFs) especially from those associated with overhead powerlines. The recent California Health Department Report on EMFs cites added risk of miscarriage, childhood and adult Leukaemia, brain cancer and greater incidence of suicide as some of the health effects associated with elevated exposure.
You may also know of the various Action Groups who are trying to raise awareness of this issue both with the public and with Government. As one of these Action Groups we have become particularly aware of the unusually high number of cases of both cancer and non-cancer illnesses close to the overhead powerline going over our houses in Trentham. This has been highlighted in a number of radio and television interviews in this country but also in a recent national television programme in Australia, "60 Minutes", which has had a wide impact in Australia of the potential adverse health effects from overhead powerlines.
Please find enclosed an information pack containing copies of letters to various Government Ministers and Agencies regarding our deep concern of the rapidly evolving knowledge of the adverse health effects of EMFs from overhead powerlines. We believe that the views expressed in these letters are representative of the growing concern of the public at large.
A number of Governments are aware of this silent killer in our midst which, to put it in perspective, looks as though it may claim more lives than passive smoking. However, the UK Government has so far failed to act, despite the fact that it is armed with considerable scientific information of the dangers to public health of overhead powerlines.
It is particularly unfortunate that the Government chooses to hide behind its advisory body, the National Radiological Protection Board, NRPB. This organisation has lost the confidence, both of the scientific community and of the public at large, in failing to keep in touch with the scientific understanding of the adverse health effects of EMFs and of failing to give any advice to reduce public exposure. It has for example been silent on the findings of the California Health Department Report
The World Health Organisation, WHO, has recently endorsed a policy of prudent avoidance to exposure to EMFs. Various nations, such as Switzerland and Italy, are taking matters very seriously in introducing measures to counteract the threat to public health. In contrast, the UK Government seems more concerned to seek out advise that gives them an excuse not to act. Have we not learned from the BSE saga, that prevention is the least expensive option whilst at the same time protecting the nation?
We as an Action Group are committed to the struggle to force moves to reduce or remove the health threat of powerline emissions, as graphically summarised in the California Health Department Report, as well as the important information emerging from the international scientific community generally. We are deeply concerned that this appears to be falling on deaf ears of Government.
We feel the risks are now so well exposed that urgent action is required. As a representative of your own community, we urge you to ensure that the Government embarks on an urgent strategy and programme of action now, rather than after the event as in the case of other recent health scares.
To put matters into perspective, we enclose a summary of the scientific community’s estimate of the effects on health. The cost to our Health Service of the adverse health effects of exposure to EMFs far exceeds the preventative costs of re-routing powerlines to minimise public exposure
Approximately 300,000 people in the UK live in properties that are affected by powerline emissions that exceed 0.4 microtesla - a figure at which the NRPB admits to a doubling of childhood Leukaemia risk. However, as the recent California EMF Health Report highlights, if the many other illnesses also associated with exposure above 0.4uT are taken into account, the ill health numbers that accrue well exceeds that which has triggered regulatory evaluation and regulatory control of chemical agents.
Annual death rates as a result of exposure to EMFs may be comparable to the annual number of deaths on the road. This problem therefore ranks in the same league as deaths from road accidents as well as, for example deaths from smoking.
Are YOU prepared to let this Government continue to ignore this issue?
We need action now.
Frank Lewis Chairman
Maureen Asbury President
cc: to all Members of Parliament