Power Line EMF and Health
Power line (60Hz) EMF links to adverse health
There are over 8,000 peer-reviewed scientific studies documenting the adverse health effects of man-made EMFs with many directly linking an increased risk of cancer to EMF exposure. Much of the scientific research in this area has focused on the magnetic field from high voltage power lines and from the electricity supply in general. Scientific evidence has shown a link between exposure to magnetic fields and childhood leukemia, adult leukemia, miscarriages and depression, as well as neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS and Alzheimer disease.
As far back as 1979, childhood leukaemia was associated with exposure to residential electromagnetic fields. In 2001, Anders Ahlbom analysed this and subsequent research and concluded that there was sufficient scientific evidence to confirm the doubling in incidence for childhood leukaemia at power frequency magnetic fields of 4 mG.and above. In 2001 working group assembled by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has unanimously concluded that power-frequency magnetic fields are possible human carcinogens.
- In 2001 The WHO conservatively classified ELF (Extremely low frequency) power line as a carcinogen (Class 2b) based on 6 epidemiological studies for childhood leukemia. They issued Factsheet No. 263 in October 2001 on EMFs and cancer. It said that they were "possibly carcinogenic", based primarily on IARC's similar evaluation with respect to childhood leukemia.
- In 2001, Ahlbom et al. conducted a review into EMFs and Health, and found that there was a doubling in childhood leukemia for magnetic fields of over 0.4 µT (4 milligauss)
- In 2002 The California Health Department of Health, EMF Program concluded: "EMFs from power lines, home wiring and appliances can cause some degree of increased risk of childhood leukemia, brain cancer, Lou Gehrig's disease (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) and miscarriages."
- In 2005 Draper et al. found a 70% increase in childhood leukemia for those living within 200 metres (656 ft) of an overhead transmission line, and a 23% increase for those living between 200 and 600 metres (656 and 1,969 ft).
- A study by the British scientist, Dr. Roger Coghill, on childhood leukemia, showed in 1996, that relatively weak AC electric fields, as they can often be found in sleeping areas (10 – 20 V/m), not only increase the leukemia and cancer risk, but also are a contributing factor to headaches, fatigue, depression and sudden infant death.
- In well-conducted blind studies Professor Magda Havas at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario found significant links between “dirty electricity” (high frequency electric fields) in homes and schools and diseases like Multiple Sclerosis and diabetes and to asthma, ADD/ADHD in children.
- Published in 2007 by an international working group of scientists, researchers and public health policy professionals, the Bioinnitiative Report concludes that the existing standards for public safety concerning EMF exposure are completely inadequate to protect the public health.
The BioInitiative Report 2012 Update
More strong, scientific evidence has been published linking EMF to adverse health including brain tumor risks from cell phones, damage to DNA and genes, effects on memory, learning, behavior, attention; sleep disruption and cancer and neurological diseases like Alzheimer's disease. Effects on sperm and miscarriage (fertility and reproduction), effects of wireless on the brain development of the fetus and infant, and effects of wireless classrooms on children and adolescents is addressed. Mechanisms for biological action and public health responses in other countries are discussed.
- Evidence for Damage to Sperm and Reproduction
- Evidence that Children are More Vulnerable
- Evidence for Fetal and Neonatal Effects
- Evidence for Effects on Autism (Autism Spectrum Disorders)
- Evidence for Electrohypersensitivity
- Evidence for Effects from Cell Tower-Level RFR Exposures
- Evidence for Effects on the Blood-brain Barrier
- Evidence for Effects on Brain Tumors
- Evidence for Effects on Genes (Genotoxicity)
- Evidence for Effects on the Nervous System (Neurotoxicity)
- Evidence for Effects on Cancer (Childhood Leukemia, Adult Cancers)
- Melatonin, Breast Cancer and Alzheimer's Disease Stress,
- Stress Proteins and DNA as a Fractal Antenna
- Effects of Weak-Field Interactions on Non-Linear Biological Oscillators and Synchronized Neural Activity
Understanding Electric and Magnetic Fields (EMF)
EMF stands for electromagnetic fields. Electric and magnetic fields (EMF) are invisible lines of force that surround any electrical device. A "field" is the area in which charges interact with other charges. They travel at the speed of light and are characterized by a frequency and a wavelength. In North America we use a 60 Hz electric power supply that consists of electric (E) and magnetic (H) waves traveling together oscillating 60 times a second, or 60 Hz. Radio waves, such as those produced by cell phones and wi-fi routers, is another form of EMF. Visible light as well as invisible forms such as infrared, and ultraviolet, X-Rays, and gamma rays are also forms of EMF.
Electric and magnetic fields (EMF) are invisible lines of force that surround any electrical device. A "field" is the area in which charges interact with other charges. Electromagnetic fields consist of electric (E) and magnetic (H) waves traveling together. They travel at the speed of light and are characterized by a frequency and a wavelength. In North America, we use a 60 Hz electric power supply.
Electric fields are measured in Volts per meter (V/M) and are always
present on charged electrical wires and all devices plugged into live outlets. An electric field will exist even when there is no current flowing. Electric fields are created by differences in voltage, the higher the voltage the stronger the resultant field. Electric fields couple to humans and create body current, at higher frequencies, as with dirty electricity, electric fields are even more harmful.
Common Electric field exposure points
- Electrical wiring and power cords and lamps around desks and in bedrooms
- Fluorescent/Compact Fluorescent lighting
- Poorly grounded electrical systems
- Bedside AC lamps, clocks and electrical cords
- Ungrounded laptop computers
Magnetic fields are measured in milli-gauss and are created when electric current flows: the greater the current, the stronger the magnetic field.
Magnetic fields are created when electric current flows: the greater the current, the stronger the magnetic field. If current does flow, the strength of the magnetic field will vary with power consumption but the electric field strength will be constant. Higher magnetic field strengths occur closer to source and dissipate with distance. Magnetic fields are very difficult to block and penetrating both building and people.
Common Magnetic field exposure points
- All power lines (especially high voltage power lines)
- Electrical transformers (both large and small) and conductors
- Plumbing Current (entering your home through your ground to the city water line)
- Net Current (wiring problems)
- Faulty electrical wiring and grounding
- Outdated Knob and tube wiring
- High current appliances such as hair dryers, heaters and ovens
- CRT-style computer monitors and TVs
Meters to measure Radio Frequency Radiation (μW/cm2 )
Meters to measure 60 Hz electric fileds (V/m)
Meters to measure 60Hz magnetic fields (mG.)
Meters to measure dirty electricity (GS Units)
Before you purchase a home it may be wise to have it inspected for power line EMF, plumbing current and wiring problems that can cause significnt levels of magnetic fields in the home.
We are all exposed to harmful EMFs in our homes but you can reduce your exposure greatly with an EMF home inspection
To purchase EMF meters to check your home, school or workplace, visit our on-line store.