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16 June 2016

Switzerland: Norms Eased for Antennas

A somewhat different article.  
Our comment:  The commerce minister does not know what she is talking about:  "According to WHO, only high frequency radiation is possibly carcinogenic, replied Doris Leuthard: This is not the case for mobile phone installations."  Mobile phone antennas also emit high frequency radiation!  Once again, the evening news on Suisse Romande's main TV station did not report the results of this legislation, just as it did not report on the NTP study.  It only reported on "sexting".

On the bright side, the 46-member Council of States still must give a ruling.  The Federal Council will have to take into consideration the fact that almost half of the Swiss population, as expressed in the very close vote of the National Council, will not tolerate an increase in limit values.

Norms eased for antennas
by Caroline Zuercher, 24heures, 16 June 2016
(translated by the Editor of this blog)

Mobile telephony:  The National Council accepted Thursday to raise limit values for the installations which power our cell phones.

The National Council wants to improve the mobile phone network.  By 96 votes against 89 and three abstentions, it supported a motion which foresees raising limit values for antenna radiation in spite of health fears expressed by some.  The Council of States must still give a ruling.

Many other countries have much higher limit values, emphasized Manfred Bühler (UDC/BE).  Speaking on behalf of the committee, he said, "If we want to optimize the network and align it with the needs of consumers and the economy, we must either build a great number of new antennas, or raise the authorized limit values."  Doris Leuthard, minister in charge of the affair, added that the quantities of data are increasing monthly which makes the actual installations obsolete.

Health at stake

Thursday, the opposition came from the Greens and socialists, joined by the UDC and PDC.  In this respect, they recalled the precautionary principle, emphasizing that the World Health Organization (WHO) has classified radiation from mobile phones in the category of possible carcinogens.  Last week, Doctors for the Protection of the Environment (MfE) launched an appeal.  "From a medical point of view, one thing is clear:  the results of scientific studies to date clearly show that it is necessary to avoid useless exposures."

According to WHO, only high frequency radiation is possibly carcinogenic, replied Doris Leuthard: This is not the case for mobile phone installations.  Kurt Fluri (PLR/SO) adds that we inflict much more damage to the head with our cell phone glued to the ear.  In reply to concerns, the motion foresees establishing a system of surveillance of non-ionizing radiation.  This could be financed from part of the billion francs that the Confederation has collected from granting of mobile phone concessions for 2013-2028.

Accelerating authorization

Thursday, the National Council also gave the green light to a postulate (94 votes against 90 and two abstentions) which requests the Federal Council to examine measures to simplify and accelerate procedures for granting building permits for antennas.  This second proposal is not supported by the Federal Council. (24 heures)

Original article in French:

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