European Parliament on mobile phones

The European Parliament has called for stricter standards to protect public health from mobile communications.

The European Parliament has acknowledged the risks of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) from communications technology and called for stricter safety limits. In its mid-term review of the European Environment and Health Action Plan 2004-2010, members of Parliament- voted 522 to 16 to endorse a set of precautionary recommendations on 4 September.

The Parliament recognised the emergence of new syndromes, such as hypersensitivity to electromagnetic radiation, and urged member states to reduce exposure in their buildings and to consider the effects of EMR on sensitive members of the population.

Members of Parliament expressed concern about the evidence of risk from EMR. Parliament “is greatly concerned at the Bio-Initiative international report concerning electromagnetic fields, which summarises over 1500 studies on that topic and which points in its conclusions to the health risks posed by emissions from mobile-telephony devices such as mobile telephones, UMTS, Wi-Fi, Wimax and Bluetooth, and also DECT landline telephones.”

It resolved that current exposure limits for EMR are “obsolete” because they “obviously take no account of developments in information and communication technologies, of the recommendations issued by the European Environment Agency or of the stricter emission standards adopted, for example, by Belgium, Italy and Austria, and do not address the issue of vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women, newborn babies and children”.

In a further resolution, the Parliament urged member states to take “advantages of the prevention and precautionary principles and to develop and implement tools enabling potential environmental and health threats to be anticipated. and countered.” It also called for funding of practical measures to reduce environmental impacts on health and to implement precautionary measures.

The full text of the resolution can be found at

from 'EMR and Health' Dec 2008, vol 4 no 4