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Reviews That Recommend Cell Towers Be Distanced Away From Homes and Schools  

  • A review paper entitled “Limiting liability with positioning to minimize negative health effects of cellular phone towers” reviewed the “large and growing body of evidence that human exposure to RFR from cellular phone base stations causes negative health effects.” The authors recommends restricting antennas near home and within 500 meters of schools and hospitals to protect companies from future liability (Pearce 2020). 
  • An analysis of 100 studies published in Environmental Reviews found ~80% showed biological effects near towers. “As a general guideline, cell base stations should not be located less than 1500 ft from the population, and at a height of about 150 ft.” (Levitt 2010) 
  • A review published in the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health found people living less than 500 m from base station antennas had an increased adverse neuro-behavioral symptoms and cancer in eight of the ten epidemiological studies (Khurana 2011).
  • A paper by human rights experts documented the accumulating science indicating safety is not assured and considered the issue within a human rights framework to protect vulnerable populations from environmental pollution. “We conclude that, because scientific knowledge is incomplete, a precautionary approach is better suited to State obligations under international human rights law,” (Roda and Perry 2014)
  • A 2020 review entitled “Evidence for a health risk by RF on humans living around mobile phone base stations: From radiofrequency sickness to cancer  reviewed  the existing scientific literature and found radiofrequency sickness,  cancer and  changes in biochemical parameters. 

Cell Towers and Cancer

  • A study published in Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine found changes in blood considered biomarkers predictive of cancer in people living closer to cell antenna arrays (Zothansiama 2017). 
  • A study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found higher exposure to cell arrays linked to higher mortality from all cancer and specifically lung and breast cancer (Rodrigues 2021).
  • A study published in Science of the Total Environment 10 year study on cell phone antennas by the local Municipal Health Department and several universities in Brazil found a clearly elevated relative risk of cancer mortality at residential distances of 500 meters or less from cell phone towers (Dode 2011).  
  • A large scale animal study published in Environmental Research found rats exposed to radiofrequency levels comparable to cell tower emissions had elevated cancers, the very same cancers also found in the US National Toxicology Program Study  (Falcioni 2018)
  • A study commissioned by the Provincial Government of Styria, Austria found a significant cancer incidence in the area around the transmitter as well as significant exposure-effect relationships between radiofrequency radiation exposure and the incidence of breast cancers and brain tumors (Oberfeld 2008).
  • A review published in Experimental Oncology found “alarming epidemiological and experimental data on possible carcinogenic effects of long term exposure to low intensity microwave (MW) radiation.”  Even a year of operation of a powerful base transmitting station for mobile communication reportedly resulted in a dramatic increase of cancer incidence among population living nearby (Yakymenko 2011).  

Cell Tower Radiation Classification by the World Health Organization International Agency for Research on Cancer 

In 2011, radiofrequency radiation was classified as a Class 2B possible carcinogen by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (WHO/IARC). The scientists clarified that the determination was for RFR from any source be it cell phones,  wireless devices or cell towers. Since 2011, the published peer-reviewed scientific evidence showing associations with adverse effects has significantly increased. 

In 2019, the advisory committee to the WHO/IARC recommended that radiofrequency radiation be re-evaluated as a “high” priority in light of the new research. 

Several scientists conclude that the weight of current peer-reviewed evidence supports the conclusion that radiofrequency radiation should be upgraded and now regarded as a proven human carcinogen (Hardell and Carlberg 2017, Peleg et al, 2018, Miller et al 2018).

Surveys of people living near cell tower antennas in France, Spain, Iraq, India, Germany, Egypt, Poland have found significantly higher reports of health issues including sleep issues, fatigue and headaches (Santini et al 2003,  López 2021, Alazawi 2011Pachuau and Pachuaua 2016,, Eger et al 2004Abdel-Rassoul et al., 2007, Bortkiewicz et al., 2004). 

A study published in American Journal of Men’s Health linked higher cell tower RFR exposures to delayed fine and gross motor skills, spatial working memory, and attention in school adolescents (Meo 2018).

A study published in Environmental Research and Public Health found higher exposures linked to higher risk of type 2 diabetes (Meo 2015). 

A study following people for 6 years linked increased cell phone and cell phone tower antenna exposure to altered levels of hormones including cortisol, thyroid, prolactin and testosterone (Eskander et al 2021). 

A study that followed people in a German town after a cell tower was erected and found stress hormones adrenaline and noradrenaline significantly increased over the first 6 months after the antenna activation and decreased dopamine and PEA levels after 18 months (Buchner 2011). 

REFERENCES/CITATIONS 

Abdel-Rassoul, G., El-Fateh, O. A., Salem, M. A., Michael, A., Farahat, F., El-Batanouny, M., & Salem, E. (2007). Neurobehavioral effects among inhabitants around mobile phone base stations. NeuroToxicology, 28(2), 434–440. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuro.2006.07.012.

Amraee, A., Seif, F., Bayatiani, M. R., Shakeri, M., & Zakeri, F. (2021). Correlation between Base Transceiver Station and the Quality of Sleep and Life of Nearby Residents. Iranian Journal of Medical Physics, 18(1), 10–14. https://ijmp.mums.ac.ir/article_14561.html.

Balmori, A. (2022). Evidence for a health risk by RF on humans living around mobile phone base stations: From radiofrequency sickness to cancer. Environmental Research, 214, 113851. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2022.113851

Balmori, A. (2010). Mobile phone mast effects on common frog (Rana temporaria) tadpoles: The city turned into a laboratory. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 29(1–2), 31–35. https://doi.org/10.3109/15368371003685363.

Blettner, M., Schlehofer, B., Breckenkamp, J., Kowall, B., Schmiedel, S., Reis, U., Potthoff, P., Schüz, J., & Berg-Beckhoff, G. (2009). Mobile phone base stations and adverse health effects: Phase 1 of a population-based, cross-sectional study in Germany. Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 66(2), 118–123. https://doi.org/10.1136/oem.2007.037721.

Bortkiewicz, A., Zmyślony, M., Szyjkowska, A., & Gadzicka, E. (2004). [Subjective symptoms reported by people living in the vicinity of cellular phone base stations: Review]. Medycyna Pracy, 55(4), 345–351. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15620045/.

Broom, K. A., Findlay, R., Addison, D. S., Goiceanu, C., & Sienkiewicz, Z. (2019). Early‐Life Exposure to Pulsed LTE Radiofrequency Fields Causes Persistent Changes in Activity and Behavior in C57BL/6 J Mice. Bioelectromagnetics, 40(7), 498–511. https://doi.org/10.1002/bem.22217

Buchner, K., & Eger, H. D. I. (2011). Changes of Clinically Important Neurotransmitters under the Influence of Modulated RF Fields A Long-term Study under Real-life Conditions. https://www.avaate.org/IMG/pdf/Rimbach-Study-20112.pdf.

Carlberg, M., Hedendahl, L., Koppel, T., & Hardell, L. (2019). High ambient radiofrequency radiation in Stockholm city, Sweden. Oncology Letters, 17(2), 1777–1783. https://doi.org/10.3892/ol.2018.9789.

Choi, J., Min, K., Jeon, S., Kim, N., Pack, J.-K., & Song, K. (2020). Continuous Exposure to 1.7 GHz LTE Electromagnetic Fields Increases Intracellular Reactive Oxygen Species to Decrease Human Cell Proliferation and Induce Senescence. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 9238. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-65732-4

Dode, A. C., Leão, M. M. D., Tejo, F. de A. F., Gomes, A. C. R., Dode, D. C., Dode, M. C., Moreira, C. W., Condessa, V. A., Albinatti, C., & Caiaffa, W. T. (2011). Mortality by neoplasia and cellular telephone base stations in the Belo Horizonte municipality, Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The Science of the Total Environment, 409(19), 3649–3665. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2011.05.051.

Eger, et al., The Influence of Being Physically Near to a Cell Phone Transmission Mast on the Incidence of Cancer (2004).  Umwelt·Medizin·Gesellschaft. http://www.tetrawatch.net/papers/naila.pdf.

Eskander, E. F., Estefan, S. F., & Abd-Rabou, A. A. (2012). How does long term exposure to base stations and mobile phones affect human hormone profiles? Clinical Biochemistry, 45(1–2), 157–161. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clinbiochem.2011.11.006.

Eşmekaya, M. A., Seyhan, N., & Ömeroğlu, S. (2010). Pulse modulated 900 MHz radiation induces hypothyroidism and apoptosis in thyroid cells: A light, electron microscopy and immunohistochemical study. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 86(12), 1106–1116. https://doi.org/10.3109/09553002.2010.502960.

Falcioni, L., Bua, L., Tibaldi, E., Lauriola, M., De Angelis, L., Gnudi, F., Mandrioli, D., Manservigi, M., Manservisi, F., Manzoli, I., Menghetti, I., Montella, R., Panzacchi, S., Sgargi, D., Strollo, V., Vornoli, A., & Belpoggi, F. (2018). Report of final results regarding brain and heart tumors in Sprague-Dawley rats exposed from prenatal life until natural death to mobile phone radiofrequency field representative of a 1.8 GHz GSM base station environmental emission. Environmental Research, 165, 496–503. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2018.01.037

Gandhi, G., Kaur, G., & Nisar, U. (2015). A cross-sectional case control study on genetic damage in individuals residing in the vicinity of a mobile phone base station. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 34(4), 344–354. https://doi.org/10.3109/15368378.2014.933349.

Gandhi, G., Naru, J., Kaur, M., & Kaur, G. (2014). DNA and Chromosomal Damage in Residents Near a Mobile Phone Base Station. International Journal of Human Genetics, 14(3–4), 107–118. https://doi.org/10.1080/09723757.2014.11886234.

Gómez-Perretta, C., Navarro, E. A., Segura, J., & Portolés, M. (2013). Subjective symptoms related to GSM radiation from mobile phone base stations: A cross-sectional study. BMJ Open, 3(12), e003836. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2013-003836.

Hardell, L., & Koppel, T. (2022). Electromagnetic hypersensitivity close to mobile phone base stations—A case study in Stockholm, Sweden. Reviews on Environmental Health. https://doi.org/10.1515/reveh-2021-0169

Hardell, L., Carlberg, M., Hedendahl, L. K., Koppel, T., & Ahonen, M. (2019). Environmental radiofrequency radiation at the Järntorget Square in Stockholm Old Town, Sweden in May, 2018 compared with results on brain and heart tumour risks in rats exposed to 1.8 GHz base station environmental emissions. World Academy of Sciences Journal, 1(1), 47–54. https://doi.org/10.3892/wasj.2018.5.

Hardell, L., Carlberg, M., & Hedendahl, L. K. (2018). Radiofrequency radiation from nearby base stations gives high levels in an apartment in Stockholm, Sweden: A case report. Oncology Letters, 15(5), 7871–7883. https://doi.org/10.3892/ol.2018.8285.

Hardell, L., Carlberg, M., Koppel, T., & Hedendahl, L. (2017). High radiofrequency radiation at Stockholm Old Town: An exposimeter study including the Royal Castle, Supreme Court, three major squares and the Swedish Parliament. Molecular and Clinical Oncology, 6(4), 462–476. https://doi.org/10.3892/mco.2017.1180.

Hardell, L., Koppel, T., Carlberg, M., Ahonen, M., & Hedendahl, L. (2016). Radiofrequency radiation at Stockholm Central Railway Station in Sweden and some medical aspects on public exposure to RF fields. International Journal of Oncology, 49(4), 1315–1324. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijo.2016.3657.

Hardell, L., & Sage, C. (2008). Biological effects from electromagnetic field exposure and public exposure standards. Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy, 62(2), 104–109. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2007.12.004.

Hecht, K., Savoley, E.N., (2007). Overloading of Towns and Cities with Radio Transmitters (Cellular Transmitter): a hazard for the human health and a disturbance of eco-ethics,  IRCHET – International Research Centre of Healthy and Ecological Technology, Berlin, Germany. https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/7521097890.pdf.

Hutter, H.-P., Moshammer, H., Wallner, P., & Kundi, M. (2006). Subjective symptoms, sleeping problems, and cognitive performance in subjects living near mobile phone base stations. Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 63(5), 307–313. https://doi.org/10.1136/oem.2005.020784.

Khurana, V. G., Hardell, L., Everaert, J., Bortkiewicz, A., Carlberg, M., & Ahonen, M. (2010). Epidemiological evidence for a health risk from mobile phone base stations. International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, 16(3), 263–267. https://doi.org/10.1179/107735210799160192.

Koppel, T., & Hardell, L. (2022). Measurements of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, including 5G, in the city of Columbia, SC, USA. World Academy of Sciences Journal, 4(3), 1–12. https://doi.org/10.3892/wasj.2022.157

Koppel, T., Ahonen, M., Carlberg, M., & Hardell, L. (2022). Very high radiofrequency radiation at Skeppsbron in Stockholm, Sweden from mobile phone base station antennas positioned close to pedestrians’ heads. Environmental Research, 208, 112627. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2021.112627.

Koppel, T., Ahonen, M., Carlberg, M., Hedendahl, L. K., & Hardell, L. (2019). Radiofrequency radiation from nearby mobile phone base stations-a case comparison of one low and one high exposure apartment. Oncology Letters, 18(5), 5383–5391. https://doi.org/10.3892/ol.2019.10899.

Kundi, M., & Hutter, H.-P. (2009). Mobile phone base stations-Effects on wellbeing and health. Pathophysiology: The Official Journal of the International Society for Pathophysiology, 16(2–3), 123–135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pathophys.2009.01.008.

Levitt, B., & Lai, H. (2010). Biological effects from exposure to electromagnetic radiation emitted by cell tower base stations and other antenna arrays. Environmental Reviews, 18, 369–395. https://doi.org/10.1139/a10-903.

López, I., Félix, N., Rivera, M., Alonso, A., & Maestú, C. (2021). What is the radiation before 5G? A correlation study between measurements in situ and in real time and epidemiological indicators in Vallecas, Madrid. Environmental Research, 194, 110734. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2021.110734.

Lv, B., Chen, Z., Wu, T., Shao, Q., Yan, D., Ma, L., Lu, K., & Xie, Y. (2014). The alteration of spontaneous low frequency oscillations caused by acute electromagnetic fields exposure. Clinical Neurophysiology, 125(2), 277–286. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clinph.2013.07.018

Marinescu, I. E., & Poparlan, C. (2016). Assessment of GSM HF-Radiation Impact Levels within the Residential Area of Craiova City. Procedia Environmental Sciences, 32, 177–183. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proenv.2016.03.022.

Meo, S. A., Almahmoud, M., Alsultan, Q., Alotaibi, N., Alnajashi, I., & Hajjar, W. M. (2019). Mobile Phone Base Station Tower Settings Adjacent to School Buildings: Impact on Students’ Cognitive Health. American Journal of Men’s Health, 13(1), 1557988318816914. https://doi.org/10.1177/1557988318816914.

Meo, S. A., Alsubaie, Y., Almubarak, Z., Almutawa, H., AlQasem, Y., & Hasanato, R. M. (2015). Association of Exposure to Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Field Radiation (RF-EMFR) Generated by Mobile Phone Base Stations with Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1c) and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. International journal of environmental research and public health, 12(11), 14519–14528. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph121114519.

Miller, A. B., Morgan, L. L., Udasin, I., & Davis, D. L. (2018). Cancer epidemiology update, following the 2011 IARC evaluation of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (Monograph 102). Environmental Research, 167, 673–683. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2018.06.043

Navarro, E. A., Segura, J., Portolés, M., & Gómez‐Perretta de Mateo, C. (2003). The Microwave Syndrome: A Preliminary Study in Spain. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 22(2–3), 161–169. https://doi.org/10.1081/JBC-120024625.

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Özdemir, E., Çömelekoğlu, Ü., Degirmenci, E., Bayrak, G., Yildirim, M., Ergenoglu, T., Coşkun Yılmaz, B., Korunur Engiz, B., Yalin, S., Koyuncu, D. D., & Ozbay, E. (2021). The effect of 4.5 G (LTE Advanced-Pro network) mobile phone radiation on the optic nerve. Cutaneous and Ocular Toxicology, 40(3), 198–206. https://doi.org/10.1080/15569527.2021.1895825

Pachuau, Lalrinthara & Pachuau, Zaithanzauva. (2016). Health Effects of Mobile Tower Radiation on Human — Case Study. International Journal of Applied Physics and Mathematics. 6. 72-79. 10.17706/ijapm.2016.6.2.72-79.

Pearce, J. M. (2020). Limiting liability with positioning to minimize negative health effects of cellular phone towers. Environmental Research, 181, 108845. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2019.108845.

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Roda, C., & Perry, S. (2014). Mobile phone infrastructure regulation in Europe: Scientific challenges and human rights protection. Environmental Science & Policy, 37, 204–214. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2013.09.009.

Rodrigues, N. C. P., Dode, A. C., de Noronha Andrade, M. K., O’Dwyer, G., Monteiro, D. L. M., Reis, I. N. C., Rodrigues, R. P., Frossard, V. C., & Lino, V. T. S. (2021). The Effect of Continuous Low-Intensity Exposure to Electromagnetic Fields from Radio Base Stations to Cancer Mortality in Brazil. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(3), 1229. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18031229.

SA, M., Alsubaie, Y., Almubarak, Z., Almutawa, H., AlQasem, Y., & Hasanato, R. (2015). Association of Exposure to Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Field Radiation (RF-EMFR) Generated by Mobile Phone Base Stations with Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1c) and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 12, 14519-14528; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph121114519.

Santini, R., Santini, P., Le Ruz, P., Danze, J. M., & Seigne, M. (2003). Survey Study of People Living in the Vicinity of Cellular Phone Base Stations. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 22(1), 41–49. https://doi.org/10.1081/JBC-120020353.

Santini, R., Santini, P., Danze, J. M., Le Ruz, P., & Seigne, M. (2002). Investigation on the health of people living near mobile telephone relay stations: I/Incidence according to distance and sex. Pathologie-Biologie, 50(6), 369–373. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0369-8114(02)00311-5. [Article in French].

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Souffi, S., Lameth, J., Gaucher, Q., Arnaud-Cormos, D., Lévêque, P., Edeline, J.-M., & Mallat, M. (2022). Exposure to 1800 MHz LTE electromagnetic fields under proinflammatory conditions decreases the response strength and increases the acoustic threshold of auditory cortical neurons. Scientific Reports, 12(1), 4063. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-07923-9

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Vecsei, Z., Knakker, B., Juhász, P., Thuróczy, G., Trunk, A., & Hernádi, I. (2018). Short-term radiofrequency exposure from new generation mobile phones reduces EEG alpha power with no effects on cognitive performance. Scientific Reports, 8, 18010. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-36353-9

Wei, Y., Yang, J., Chen, Z., Wu, T., & Lv, B. (2019). Modulation of resting-state brain functional connectivity by exposure to acute fourth-generation long-term evolution electromagnetic field: An fMRI study. Bioelectromagnetics, 40(1), 42–51. https://doi.org/10.1002/bem.22165

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Yang, L., Chen, Q., Lv, B., & Wu, T. (2017). Long-Term Evolution Electromagnetic Fields Exposure Modulates the Resting State EEG on Alpha and Beta Bands. Clinical EEG and Neuroscience, 48(3), 168–175. https://doi.org/10.1177/1550059416644887

Yu, G., Tang, Z., Chen, H., Chen, Z., Wang, L., Cao, H., Wang, G., Xing, J., Shen, H., Cheng, Q., Li, D., Wang, G., Xiang, Y., Guan, Y., Zhu, Y., Liu, Z., & Bai, Z. (2020). Long-term exposure to 4G smartphone radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation diminished male reproductive potential by directly disrupting Spock3–MMP2-BTB axis in the testes of adult rats. Science of The Total Environment, 698, 133860. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.133860

Zothansiama, Zosangzuali, M., Lalramdinpuii, M., & Jagetia, G. C. (2017). Impact of radiofrequency radiation on DNA damage and antioxidants in peripheral blood lymphocytes of humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 36(3), 295–305. https://doi.org/10.1080/15368378.2017.1350584.

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https://ehtrust.org/cell-tower-radiation-science/ Source: Environmental Health Trust