by Leslie Shankman
5G, the fifth generation of cellular technology, is headed to Bellingham. From July through December of 2018, the city of Bellingham went through the process of creating regulations for the deployment of small cell telecommunication facilities in the city rights-of-way. These regulations were created as a new Bellingham Municipal Code, Chapter 13.16, by amending Bellingham Municipal Code Chapters 20-13 and 21.10 under Ordinance 2018-09-014. (1,2)
On July 1, 2019, six of the seven members of the City Council voted “Yes” to granting Verizon a franchise to operate and maintain small cell facilities in the city’s rights-of ways. Granting this franchise to Verizon is in compliance with Bellingham’s Municipal Code 13.15 covering Utilities and Telecommunications Franchises. (3)
Michael Lilliquist abstained from voting on giving Verizon a franchise, saying he could not vote “No” since Bellingham Municipal Code 13.15 follows state law and because federal law requires that municipalities comply with small cellular installation. Yet, he felt he could not vote “Yes” as he also has an obligation for the health, safety and welfare of the people of Bellingham. Given that some studies indicate safety concerns regarding 4G and given that 5G technology has not been tested for safety, his conscience led him to abstain.
“Small cell” and 5G are not the same thing, although one (5G) uses the other (small cell). The city can only regulate placement of small cell, but cannot regulate how the small cell is used (4G or 5G). Local governments are given a say only about where the thing goes, not what the thing does.
If you are not yet aware of the rollout of 5G technology in the United States and around the world, it is an important reality to become familiar with. Most of our devices and conveniences currently work using the 3G and 4G generations of cellular technology. The electromagnetic frequencies (EMFs) that come from cell phone towers to support 3 and 4G functions will remain operational, and the advent of 5G technology will add a new kind of electromagnetic frequency to the mix.
The telecom vision for 5G is that it will generate a Fourth Industrial Revolution by enabling the creation of an “Ecosystem of Technology.” Called the “Internet of Things” (IOT), the idea is that many things will be made “Smart” and be able to talk to each other for our greater convenience. For example, a recent ad for Pampers heralds the “exciting” news that in the fall they will offer a disk that can be pinned to baby’s diaper to let mama’s app know when he/she is wet. (4)
To accommodate all these many things, a greater bandwidth of frequencies is needed. But the greater the bandwidth, the shorter the waves. Thus, many small antennae are needed in each enabled device, which then focus these short waves into beams that are emitted to communicate with both cellular base stations and with satellites above. Because of the short burst character of the 5G frequencies, the base stations need to be placed every 500 feet along the street. And the FCC has given approval for 20,000 satellites to be put into orbit over the next two years.
We have been living in an invisible but consequential web of increasing electromagnetic frequencies for decades, and, with 5G, we are about to add a constant firing of short bullet-like beams ricocheting between land and sky and many newly enabled devices such as cars and coffee makers and garage doors and Pamper alerts and …
Dr. Pall’s Presentation
Thousands of independently funded scientific studies already show biological harm from 2G, 3G and 4G technologies. Is this further addition of electromagnetic frequencies safe for humans and plants and insects and animals? A group of concerned Bellingham citizens was able to contact Dr. Martin Pall, Professor Emeritus at WSU, and invite him to share his extensive research into the biological effects of EMFs. He spoke on July 11 at the Majestic in Bellingham to an audience of 100.
A few things to know before we look at what Dr. Pall shared:
• The FCC has structured regulations that prohibit local municipalities from stopping 5G installation.
• There have been no safety tests done for 5G frequencies. n The Federal Safety Guidelines for EMFs were set in 1996 and only look at the thermal (heating) effects of EMFs; they do not take into consideration other levels of effect.
• Thousands of solid scientific studies have been done showing many damaging effects of nonthermal EMFs, yet they are ignored by regulators.
Dr. Pall has his B.A. in physics and his Doctorate in biochemistry and genetics. He has spent his career looking at the mechanisms of biological regulatory systems. He believes that, if we know how a mechanism works, it can provide feedback and information that helps in understanding what is necessary to maintain biological health. For most of his career, he focused on the effects of chemicals on the body’s regulatory systems.
Then, at the end of 2012, he was drawn to investigate the effects of EMFs on the body. His primary question was, “What is the main target of EMFs in the body?” In response to this, he started to investigate the studies which show biological harm at far below the current federal exposure guidelines, and he began to correlate the findings into a comprehensive whole.
Dr. Pall spent the evening showing us the many nonthermal consequences of EMF exposure, citing scientific studies that substantiate the current EMF Safety Guidelines are completely unrealistic, inadequate and fraudulent. Dr. Pall’s findings and the relevant scientific studies to corroborate what is covered in this article are all available in his published papers — and the links for those papers are below the article. This article is presented in conversational terms because it is vitally important that we start to take in what the implementation of 5G means.
Mechanism That Goes Awry
The lynchpin to understanding the mechanism that sparks so many consequential health effects in our organs and bodily systems involves voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCC). Our cell membranes have an electrically charged gate, the VGCC, that regulates the flow of calcium ions through the plasma membrane into the cell.
Sixteen studies have shown that this charged voltage gate is opened by many kinds of electromagnetic frequencies: millimeter waves, microwave/RF frequency waves, intermediate frequencies and extremely low frequency EMFs (such as from our electrical power lines), and static electrical and magnetic fields.
When the voltage gate is opened, calcium from the bloodstream floods into the cell. The cells of different organs and body systems will respond differently to this imbalance, but the net effect is that there are definite major traceable health consequences in different bodily systems.
The heart, for instance, has pacemaker cells that have a high density of voltage-gated calcium channels. Chronic exposure to EMFs can lead to heart arrhythmia, creating either tachycardia (fast heart rate) or bradycardia (slowed heart rate). And, studies with rodents have correlated sudden cardiac deaths with millimeter waves.
News stories covering the successive deaths of 30 horses at the Santa Anita Racetrack in Arcadia, Calif., since December 26, 2018, on top of 26-36 (reports vary) horses dying throughout 2018 (5,6,7), come with speculation about possible causes such as the condition of the track or care practices. The horse deaths have resulted from either sudden cardiac arrest or broken bones suffered while racing, which necessitated euthanizing the animals.
Learning of these deaths, Dr. Pall wondered if there might be a correlation with EMF exposure. That led him to check a website that locates cell phone antenna. He found that there are 15 antennae around the Santa Anita track; 14 4G antennae and one 5G. This correlation may well draw skepticism as it is just conjecture on Dr. Pall’s part. But his questioning is in line with his research, and perhaps should become a routine inquiry regarding biological mysteries — could EMFs be a factor?
The cardiac arrest and bone breakage reflect what is suggested by the studies. The sudden cardiac arrest would be caused by EMF assault on the pacemaker cells of the heart, opening the voltage-gated calcium channels, causing them to be flooded with calcium. The bone breakage would be a result of the extracellular calcium leaving the blood to flood into the open cells, thereby causing the body to seek balance by drawing calcium out of the bones and weakening them.
Excessive intracellular calcium also plays a role in Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Epidemiological studies report that people exposed to EMFs occupationally have a higher incidence of Alzheimer’s disease. EMFs produce large increases in the amyloid beta (Ab) protein in isolated neurons which play a key role in Alzheimer’s.
Two studies of rats showed that a series of microwave pulses given to young rats, followed by cessation of pulses, produced 100 percent Alzheimer’s-like effects in middle-aged rats — causing memory and behavioral changes and showing high levels of Ab protein and oxidative stress in their brains.
Dr. Pall feels that, if extremely highly pulsed 5G radiation produces similar effects in humans, 5G will inevitably yield very early onset Alzheimer’s and digital dementias. “Digital Dementia” is a term coined by neuroscientist Manfred Spitzer to describe the breakdown of cognitive abilities from an overuse of digital technology. Spitzer proposes that short-term memory pathways will start to deteriorate from underuse if we overuse technology. (8)
Many Consequences to Health
Studies show many other avenues of consequence in the body. Twenty-five different reviews address lowered fertility. Reduced fertility is related to changes in the structure of the testes and ovaries, lowered sperm quality and count, a lowered number of follicles (eggs), increased spontaneous abortion, lowered levels of each of the three sex hormones and lowered libido.
These effects appear to be increasing in technologically advanced societies. Sperm counts in such societies have dropped to below 50 percent of normal. In Finland and Denmark, only 22 percent of a sampling of men tested had sperm counts in the normal fertility range. In Switzerland, 62 percent of the young men tested were sterile.
Reproduction in technological societies has dropped well below replacement levels, averaging about 73 percent of replacement levels in 2016. One study showed that EMF levels well below the “safety guideline” threshold caused reproduction in mice to crash to zero — apparently irreversibly — within 90 days to 150 days. Since the gestation period of mice averages 20 days, this means that the reproduction crash happens within roughly four to eight generations of EMF exposure.
Dr. Pall pointed out that we are now seeing the first signs of such reproductive crashes in three densely populated, high-technology east Asian countries. Singapore had a 31 percent drop in reproduction between 2016 and 2017. Macao had a 26 percent drop in reproduction between 2016 and 2017. South Korea had an 11 percent drop in reproduction between 2016 and 2017 and another 9 percent drop in the first half of 2018.
Twenty-nine reviews examine the effects of EMFs on the nervous system, including our brains. Major brain structure changes have been seen in EMF-exposed animals. Widespread neurological/neuropsychiatric effects such as insomnia, fatigue, depression, headaches, lack of concentration, cognitive dysfunction, agitation from anxiety, and stress and memory dysfunction are readily evident in the human population.
Since these effects on our brains and nervous systems are already entrenched, the introduction of 5G wireless — putting radar units in automobiles and enabling scores of devices — could cause further neurodegenerative decline. It is not unrealistic to conclude that our society’s collective brain function could diminish. With this, the integrity of our social fabric could begin to disintegrate.
EMFs also attack our endocrine/hormonal system. In this context, the main things that make us functionally different from single celled creatures are our nervous system and our endocrine systems — even a simple planaria worm needs both. Thus, the consequences of the disruption of these two regulatory systems is immense.
Twenty-four reviews expose different types of cellular DNA damage. The attack on the DNA of our cells produces single-strand and double-strand breaks in cellular DNA, and create oxidized bases in the DNA. These, in turn, produce cancer and mutations in germ line cells, which produce mutations in future generations. In effect, humanity’s gene pool is being irreversibly altered and apparently degraded.
Thirty-eight reviews look at EMFs and cancer, showing increases in the initiation of cancer, tumor promotion and progression, tissue invasion and metastasis. EMFs are thought to act via 15 different mechanisms which can trigger cancerous growth.
The oxidative stress and free radical damage that result from EMF exposure have central roles in essentially all chronic diseases. In addition, EMF exposure produces elevated levels of apoptosis (programmed cell death), which plays back into both neurodegenerative diseases and infertility problems.
Greater Harm to Children
EMF exposure is more consequential in children than adults for four major reasons.
1. Children have higher surface-to-volume ratios; thus, their tissues are much more exposed to EMFs. This may be particularly important in the head where thinner skulls mean brain exposures are much higher.
2. Children have very high densities of stem cells which are particularly sensitive to EMFs.
3. The developing brain appears to be especially sensitive to EMFs.
4. Young tissues have much greater extracellular water content than do older tissues. This leads to much deeper penetration of effects.
For these reasons, Wi-Fi and cell phone tower radiation in schools are both of special concern.
Excessive calcium following EMF exposure can disrupt synapse formation, causing ADHD and via that
mechanism. Credit: Dr. Martin Pall
Both ADHD and Autism may be caused by late prenatal and early postnatal EMF exposures. There are five mechanisms that control synapse formation in the developing brain, and each is controlled by intracellular calcium. Excessive calcium following EMF exposure can disrupt synapse formation, causing ADHD and autism via that mechanism. (See above EMFs and Autism chart)
An increasing health problem that may affect 20 percent of the world population at this point is electromagnetic hypersensitivity syndrome (EHS). This is starting to be recognized as a medical condition in some countries, such as Sweden and France. Such a sensitivity creates great misery for the afflicted, since they cannot function around many of the devices used in modern living.
The symptoms most commonly experienced include dermatological symptoms such as redness, tingling, and burning sensations as well as fatigue, tiredness, concentration difficulties, dizziness, nausea, heart palpitations, and digestive disturbances. These people must compensate by wearing protective clothing, painting their walls with a special graphite paint that blocks EMFs, covering windows with special shields or by moving into less developed areas.
Already experiencing the physical declines that come with aging, seniors are also more susceptible to harm from EMFs.
Fallacy of Safety Guidelines
Now, we must keep in mind that all these studies show the effects from the currently existing types of EMFs — 3 and 4G frequencies. As explained, with 5G we are adding a whole new level of, and type of, EMF. All wireless communication devices communicate via pulsations, but, the “smarter” the device, the more it pulses, and therefore, the more potential danger. 5G is designed to be extraordinarily highly pulsed, and consequently can be expected to be considerably more dangerous.
Thirteen reviews show that in most cases pulsed EMFs are much more biologically active than non-pulsed continuous wave EMFs of the same average intensity. 5G millimeter waves penetrate at least 20 times more deeply than the industry claims possible. 5G radiation will produce effects on the outer parts of the body, but will also produce much deeper effects in the body. Average intensities, the basis of the safety guidelines, cannot be used to predict biological effects.
And yet, despite all this evidence of likely harm, to work 5G needs the infrastructure — the cellular bases and antennae — placed every 500 feet in close proximity to homes, schools, hospitals and businesses. And let us not forget about the 20,000 satellites above, plus the proliferation of newly antennae-enabled devices that will be all around us. It will be impossible to avoid an extraordinarily high level of pulsed exposures.
Our existing “safety guidelines” measure an average of intensities over a period of six minutes. With this averaging approach, the typical 40 nanosecond pulse is averaged over 10 billion times longer than it actually takes. So, this calculation decreases the average intensity by a factor of 10 billion! Current safety guidelines try to sell us on the idea that nothing can happen in 40 nanoseconds, when, in fact, we know there are effects. One such effect is the over-activation of voltage-gated calcium channels.
Dr. Pall shared a great comparative example to show the false logic of current safety guidelines:
A high-powered rifle bullet travels over 700 meters per second, but it only needs 50 microseconds to injure my body. So, I go to the regulatory agency with my fears and they respond: Don’t worry — if you just average the bullet’s force over a 10 billion times longer period (about 75 days), the force is so low it won’t do anything.
All the evidence shows that the existing safety guidelines fail massively to predict biological effects. We therefore have a multitrillion-dollar set of companies, the telecommunications industry, and federal government agencies whose claims of safety are based on fraudulent safety guidelines.
A full-fledged 5G system, communicating with the “internet of things” will inevitably have trillions of nanosecond pulses and hundreds of billions of paired nanosecond pulses of identical polarity, producing vast effects, none of which are predicted by “safety guidelines.”
In sum, Dr. Pall’s presentation cited 197 review articles that show serious health-related effects caused by EMF intensities well below current safety guidelines. He feels that anyone arguing for the current safety guidelines must show that each of these 197 bodies of evidence are deeply flawed.
5G’s Ecological Impacts
Because millimeter waves have much higher impacts on tissues near the surface of the body, organisms with much higher surface-to-volume ratios will be even more impacted than humans. Massive harm and impacts can be expected for insects, birds, small mammals, and most plants. Even large trees have their leaves and reproductive organs highly exposed.
Many insect species may face rapid extinction. Perhaps this hypothesis can be borne out by the fact that in 2000 and 2001, two U.S. patents were issued for the use of millimeter-wave EMFs as insecticides (patent numbers 6,073,365 and 6,192,598). And these patents were for non-pulsed EMFs, not the extraordinarily pulsed, and therefore more dangerous, 5G EMFs. We can remember that our pollinators keep the entire food chain alive.
The impact of 5G EMFs on plants may be causative in massive fires. EMFs also impact plants by producing large increases in intracellular calcium which act, in turn, to produce large increases in highly volatile and highly flammable terpenes. These terpenes can make the plants burn as if they were sprayed with a mist of gasoline.
With the concern about climate change, it is hard to fathom that the satellite launches required for 5G and the atmospheric effect of these launches are not being discussed. These launches cause ozone depletion and can release large volumes of soot into the atmosphere. Computer models suggest that, if the number of annual rocket launches increase by 10 or more times, the combination of ozone depletion and black soot would produce a 3-degree warming effect over the Antarctic and reduce the ozone in the world’s atmosphere by 4 percent. And, since 5G satellites have a life span of about five years, there will need to be ongoing launches. (9)
Do we have safer alternatives? Yes. Wired fiber-optic systems. They are faster, more reliable, and more secure than any wireless system and have minimal negative health impacts. If the telecom industry would reverse course, we could see a whole new iteration of cell phone technology. We don’t have to give up the conveniences of connection that have evolved. There is the possibility of using safer line-of-sight infrared Li-Fi (light fidelity) communications systems akin to our TV remotes. They deliver, yet don’t require large cell phone broadcast antennae or Wi-Fi units in home, office, school, hospital or public library.
Believing the Evidence
Dr. Pall does not mince words during his sharing or with his conclusions. He equates 5G to a threat that has only been equaled once in human history — the threat of nuclear annihilation. A number of times during his presentation, he stated, “We are taking risks that no rational society should take.” These are the words of a highly educated man who has looked scrupulously at a large body of scientific data and connected the dots. His passionate and selfless attempt to ring the bell is not an easy task.
The human mind can hardly believe what he says. But we must consider it, and, once we know, we must spread the word and ask others to become aware. We can all share this information. A good way to stay informed is by signing up with reliable resource groups such as Americans for Responsible Technology.
We can also watch for reports coming from areas where 5G has been implemented. For instance, Physicians for Safe Technology reported that the weekly French-language Swiss magazine, L’Illustre, interviewed residents of Geneva and published an article on July 18, 2019, titled “With 5G, We Feel Like Guinea Pigs.” The 5G network has been launched in 102 locations in Switzerland, and the interviews illustrate consistent details of illness occurring with the activation of the system.
People are experiencing similar unusual symptoms of loud ringing in the ears, intense headaches, unbearable earaches, insomnia, chest pain, fatigue and generally not feeling well. A Swiss Doctor, Bertrand Buchs, has called for a 5G moratorium and states he has seen an increasing number of patients with similar symptoms. (10)
Not Just Faster Speeds
As the ads start to roll out for new 5G phones, for radar-enabled cars, for Smart Pampers and more, we need to understand that this evolution in technology is not just an evolution to faster device speeds.
As I finish compiling this information, I see the August 5, 2019, issue of Time magazine. In the technology section, the article is titled, “Home is Where the Chip Is.” The first paragraph reads:
“It’s 6 a.m. and the alarm clock is buzzing earlier than usual. It’s not a malfunction: the smart clock scanned your schedule and adjusted because you’ve got that big presentation first thing in the morning. Your shower automatically turns on and warms to your preferred 103 degrees. The electric car is ready to go, charged by solar panels or wind turbines on your roof. When you get home later, there’s an unexpected package waiting, delivered by a drone. You open it to find cold medicine. Turns out, health sensors embedded in your bathroom detected signs of an impending illness and placed an order automatically. Good thing you already knocked your presentation out of the park …”
5G is coming to Bellingham. Please get involved.
• Bellingham presentation is on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlfa4HMzK7A
• Links to 90-page PDF on health effects and fallacy of safety guidelines with scientific cites: https://www.emfacts.com/2018/08/martin-palls-book-on-5g-is-available-online/ Or, https://www.wirelesseducationaction.org/dr-martin-pall/
9. “Wi-Fi in the Sky,” Arthur Firstenberg, Cellular Phone Task Force https://www.cellphonetaskforce.org/wifi-in-the-sky/
Leslie Shankman has lived in Bellingham since 1993. She has worked in business, lived and worked at a yoga institute and assisted seniors with living and dying. Currently, she edits and writes. She became aware of 5G in February when a friend in Taos became debilitatingly ill from a new electrical installation on her property, forcing a move.