On February 21, 2013, the city council of sebustopol, California (
A small suburb north of San Francisco)
A resolution was adopted to try to ban Pacific Gas and power companies from installing smart meters, claiming that these devices pose a "potential risk" to the health, safety and welfare of Sebastopol residents ".
"Sebastpol officials followed the leadership of Marin County in taking this measure (
Hardly a traditional fortress of conservative pseudoscience)
A similar resolution was adopted in 2011.
So far, PG & E has ignored both issues, claiming that only the California Public Utilities Commission has jurisdiction over the matter, but the debate continues at several levels.
Those pushing the ban see health as risky.
Some people call it "emc allergy", or in other words, radiation from devices such as smart meters can cause dizziness, fatigue, headaches, seizures, loss of memory, or other diseases.
Others claim that smart meters can cause cancer.
Similar incidents occur in the UK, Canada and elsewhere, but at this point, as with many similar issues, pseudoscience has made the most progress in the United States.
So what are the scientific facts here?
First, smart meters use the same wireless technology as mobile phones.
After reviewing many scientific research, the FCC has developed wireless radiation standards that are easily followed by all smart meter manufacturers.
The frequency of microwave radiation in cellular technology is equivalent to about 30 centimeters or about 1 feet of the wavelength.
This wavelength is several thousand times larger than the structure in the brain responsible for mental processes, so it is absurd to claim that wireless radiation can cause diseases such as "dizziness" or "memory loss.
But what about other claims about the health impact of smart meters?
What about cancer?
The scientific evidence is very clear here. In 2010, a 13-
The national study commissioned by the World Health Organization found that the link between cancer risk and heavy cells was the smallest and partial contradiction --phone usage.
Along this line, concerns about the use of mobile phones by pregnant women to endanger the fetus have been overblown.
Comparing the radiation level of smart meters with the radiation level of other wireless devices is also very enlightening.
Smart meters transmit only about 1 of the data.
4 seconds per day, very low power.
Even if one station is less than 1 m. 3 feet)
When smart meters broadcast data, the microwave exposure generated was 550 times less than standing in front of the active microwave oven, and 1100 times less than putting an active phone on the ear.
But even these predictions are extremely conservative because no one will camp within 3 feet of the smart meter.
On the contrary, this equipment is usually located on the outside of the House, many feet from human beings.
Therefore, given the indisputable law that the microwave intensity decreases with the square of the distance source, this means that the exposure of the smart meter is several hundred or several thousand times less than the number in the previous paragraph. Indeed, 20-
The annual radiation exposure of smart meters is not greater than a single 30-
One minute phone callSeveral high-
Government agencies have sponsored blue-
The ribbon panel for this issue was studied, but no cause for concern was found.
The 2011 report of the California Science and Technology Commission concluded that "the exposure level of smart meters is much lower [
Established FCC standardsfor such [health]
There is no evidence that additional standards are needed to protect the public from smart meters.
"About cell phones, Robert Hoover at the 2008 congressional hearing (
Director, epidemiology and biostatistics program, National Cancer Institute)
The impact of cell phone radiation "does not appear to be sufficient to produce genetic damage usually associated with cancer," the statement said.
A number of other studies are summarized on the website of the National Cancer Institute, which found that "mobile phone use has no obvious connection with cancer in the brain, nerves or other tissues of the head and neck.
"NCI does recommend more research because cellular technology is changing, but no major concerns are found.
In short, the risk of smart meters to radiation health is hundreds or thousands of times the amount of mobile phone usage, which in turn is so small, even in largeNational studies (
If it exists).
In any case, the ability of such a movement to attract the public does not represent the level of scientific education worldwide.
We can only hope that the wider media will challenge these movements and paint them with their true vision.