Radiofrequency Exposure Near High-voltage Lines

From: Magda Havas
Sent: Sunday, March 08, 2009 1:02 PM
Subject: important paper by Vignati and Giuliani

Although this paper by Vignati and Giuliani was published in 1997, it is well worth reading as some of you may have missed it when it came out (see abstract below).

This paper documents radio frequencies flowing along power lines, something we are concerned about for a variety of reasons including the move to broadband over power lines (BPL). The RF can radiate from the wires inside buildings and thus expose occupants to RFR and not just ELF. The frequencies measured in this paper are in the kHz range.

While these frequencies may be placed on the wire deliberately, they may also occur because of improper filtering at the source of origin.

A few years ago, Dave Stetzer and I were invite to Bermuda to teach some people on the island how to measure dirty electricity, RFR, ground current, and ELF EMFs. ?While we were there, Dave was sitting on a chair near a bronze lamp in my room at the guest house, where we were staying, and he began to feel ill. Dave has become sensitive to EM radiation.

We began to measure the source of exposure and found that it was coming from an antenna several km away. However, he felt worse near the lamp. We measured the radiation in the room and found that it was coming in on the electrical wires in the wall and flowing along the wire to the nearby lamp. When we unplugged the lamp Dave felt slightly better. Dave took out his scopemeter and measured 104 MHz, which is an FM radio station. Presumably the radio station didn't have appropriate filters to isolate the RF from the electrical wires.

Some of the RF we are exposed to inside buildings is coming through the air but some of it is radiating from electrical wires as Vignati and Giuliani document below. This complicates our exposure and hence our understanding of which frequencies are biologically active in epidemiological studies of both occupational and residential exposure. The move to BPL will increase our exposure to these frequencies and a lot more people are likely to become ill as a results.


p.s. I am attaching a copy of the paper.

Vignati, M. and L. Giuliani, 1997. Radiofrequency exposure near high-voltage lines. Environ Health Perspect 105 (Suppl 6):1569-1573 (1997).

Abstract Many epidemiologic studies suggest a relationship between incidence of diseases like cancer and leukemia and exposure to 50/60 Hz magnetic fields. Some studies suggest a relationship between leukemia incidence in populations residing near high-voltage lines and the distance to these lines. Other epidemiologic studies suggest a relationship between leukemia incidence and exposure to 50/60 Hz magnetic fields (measured or estimated) and distance from the main system (220 or 120 V). The present work does not question these results but is intended to draw attention to a possible concurrent cause that might also increase the incidence of this disease; the presence on an electric grid of radiofrequency currents used for communications and remote control. These currents have been detected on high- and medium-voltage lines. In some cases they are even used on the main system for remote reading of electric meters. This implies that radiofrequency (RF) magnetic fields are present near the electric network in addition to the 50/60 Hz fields. The intensity of these RF fields is low but the intensity of currents induced in the human body by exposure to magnetic fields increases with frequency. Because scientific research has not yet clarified whether the risk is related to the value of magnetic induction or to the currents this kind of exposure produces in the human body, it is reasonable to suggest that the presence of the RF magnetic fields must be considered in the context of epidemiologic studies.

Radio Frequency Exposure Near High-Voltage Lines
Dr. Magda Havas, B.Sc. Ph.D.
Environmental & Resource Studies,
Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, K9J 7B8
phone:705 748-1011 x 7882
fax: 705 748-1569


Informant: Martin Weatherall

The importance of transient electric and magnetic fields



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