The following letter  was sent to RIVM, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in Utrecht, Netherlands, by Ethna Monks on 25th November 2015:

Re: The RIVM report based on a review of international developments regarding the Health Effects of Electromagnetic Fields, as awaited by our Irish Government

As a member of The Irish Electromagnetic Radiation Victims Network (IERVN) and having been involved at a National and European level in responding to decisions/action and inaction in relation to this issue, I have a particular interest in the report to be drawn up and collated by RIVM from current research on the subject, which is to be used as a basis for policy decisions.

The accumulation of mobile phone masts, wireless networked utility meters, the threat of more powerful electrical grids, stronger signals from telecommunication operators, the now expected 5G, along with SpaceX’s 4,000 satellites, which are to begin testing in 2016, continues unabated.  This is concerning as there is not one scientific research paper concluding that living in an environment laden with electromagnetic/radiofrequency fields/Wi-Fi (EMF/RF/Wi-Fi) is, beyond all reasonable doubt, safe.  Given this, and a future that promises more satellites, nanosatellites, drones, lasers and balloons all emitting radiofrequencies/pulsing microwaves, it is important that this report be as accurate as it can be and without prior-bias.

Ireland is largely unregulated in the area of telecommunications and is being used as a test bed by operators through the granting of test and trial licences.  For citizens, this non-consensual practice and deluge of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi has resulted in hundreds (probably thousands) suffering from the environmental impairment now referred to as electrohypersensitivity (EHS).  Many suffer from physical symptoms such as the auditory perception of radiofrequency fields, neurological pain, difficulties in concentrating, memory issues and others find themselves in intolerable situations with no option but to move from home, leaving their families behind, or living in sheds in their gardens and sadly, there have been a number of suicides.

As you have been given the task of assessing up-to-date research on the health effects of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi we wish you to know that:

  • We are aware that approximately 22,000 research papers have been produced, by independent scientists, highlighting the negative health effects of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi.These scientists report, amongst other things, that EMF/RF causes DNA damage, genotoxicity, neurotoxicity, serious impacts on human and animal sperm morphology and function and effects on offspring behaviour and on brain and cranial bone development.  Many of these scientists have suffered academic persecution, mainly in the form of having their laboratories or funding withdrawn.
  • We are aware that numerous research papers have deliberately been ignored and excluded throughout the process of decision-making regarding the health effects of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi.
  • We are aware of the numerous appeals by doctors and scientists pleading for restraint and precaution in relation to EMF/RF/Wi-Fi e.g. The BioInitiative Report (updated in 2014) and it’s 3,800 peer-reviewed research papers expounding the negative effects of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi, The International Doctors’ Appeal 2012, compiled by more than 1,000 physicians on the dangers of RF radiation on human, animal and plant life, studies by the Hardell Group and Andrew Goldsworthy amongst others, and the appeal submitted to the UN by 200 scientists in May 2015 requesting new guidelines to protect life against EMF/RF.There are also a growing number of replicated research studies confirming original conclusions.
  • We are aware of the commercialisation of science, of the workings/infiltration of industrial lobbyists in the compilation of reports/fact sheets in many settings e.g. the World Health Organisation (WHO)/EMF Project, ICNIRP and some European Union committees such as the EESC and SCENIHR (financed by the European Commission).Also of a secrecy that appears to be deliberate, which potentially underlines the existence of a bias and also, that much of the funding for research is now being provided by an industry, which has expectations about outcomes.
  • We are aware of the WHO contradiction, which on one hand classifies all forms of EMF/RF as a (class 2B) possible carcinogen, and yet, claims that there is no scientific basis to link EHS symptoms to EMF exposure, despite the existence of 22,000 research papers which state otherwise.Also, that the Council of Europe, Parliamentary Assembly in Resolution 1815 (2011) ‘The potential dangers of electromagnetic fields and their effect on the environment’, has recommended that member states take measures to reduce exposure to EMF/RF/Wi-Fi .
  • We are aware that the ICNIRP guidelines currently used by our Irish Government are out-dated (1998) and are obsolete.They are based on the Specific Absorption Rate formulated in 1982 by an electrical engineer.  They have serious deficiencies, refer only to acute thermal effects, short-term exposure and continuous rather than pulsed exposure and they do not consider affects at the cellular, atomic or sub-atomic levels.  In fact the energy absorbed by living matter during exposure to EMF/RF is normally well below the thermal level and it is at this non-thermal level that most health implications lie.
  • We are aware that it is estimated that there are 22 to 37 million European citizens suffering from electrohypersensitivity.These attempt to survive in a man-made environment of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi emissions that are one million billion times greater than the natural background EMF levels that it has taken living things millions of years to adapt to.  Currently IERVN are collaborating with 30 organisations within 14 European countries in dealing with this imposition, the injustice of it and the lack of transparency and corruption at all decision-making levels.
  • We have seen sufferers being labelled as having mental health issues e.g. there are “some indications that these symptoms may be due to pre-existing psychiatric conditions as well as stress reactions as a result of worrying about EMF health effects, rather than the EMF exposure itself” (WHO ‘fact’ sheet 2005 on Electromagnetic Fields and Public Health, Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity). It has been shown that this Nocebo hypothesis is erroneous.  A recently published study from France (by Mael Dieudonne) concludes that sufferers experience symptoms first and then endeavour to detect the source – there is no prior-bias.  Also, the negative effects of EMF/RF have been clearly demonstrated in studies undertaken on bees, ants, tomatoes, cress, trees etc and none of these consult the media and do not lend themselves to psychological explanatory models.  No actual research paper exists linking EMF/RF to psychological or psychiatric models.
  • We are aware that history dictates “that ‘observations’ and ‘experiences’ should be considered much more important than ‘scientific proof’ in coming to a decision and an acceptance about whether something is hazardous or beneficial to our health or not and whether a theory or a hypotheses is correct or not. (Dr. Leendert Vriens ‘Scientific proof’ versus ‘observation’ and ‘experiences’) To date, the experiences and observations of people with EHS along with the very obvious stress effects on trees (dieback) and possibly, effects on the weather from EMF/RF/Wi-Fi remain secreted from public knowledge.
  • We are aware that our Government has allowed the population of Ireland to be used as guinea pigs and that this is in breach of the Nuremberg Treaty, signed by every nation in the world.In short, this states that a person being experimented upon must first give their consent, have sufficient knowledge of what is happening and be made aware of the possible health effects.
  • We are aware that it is not the EHS sufferers who are the problem – it is the creation of a toxic environment experienced by their biological systems as an attack, which is responding to the interference to the point of exhaustion and ill health.
  • Finally, we are aware that we are a voice lacking in strength against a powerful industry that is unregulated in a neoliberal ‘free-market’ world, against a legalised demand for corporate profit, and also against the wealth expected to be generated in developing the Digital Agenda e.g. the European (Junker) Commission’s expectation of the generation of 250 billion euro in making European cities ‘smart’.Sadly, it seems all too clear that we live in a world where the generation of wealth for a few surpasses the ‘acceptable loss’ of many victims of this environment.

We would be grateful if you could let us know, as soon as possible, the expected date for the completion of your report, the names of committee members involved in this decision-making process and their particular interests/expertise on the Health Effects of Electromagnetic Fields.  Please also inform us if RIVM will be reviewing research that is based upon the non-thermal, the pulsed and the long-term effects of EMF/RF/Wi-Fi i.e. those not covered by the guidelines that are currently being used?

Thanking You,      Ethna Monks