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Just had a 'cell tower" go up near us  RSS feed

 
Posts: 126
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1/2 mile away as the crow flies. We have a metal roof already, anything else you folks would recommend? Our area is extremely forested as well. I cannot see the tower from home. I know they are not healthy, so if you disagree, no need to respond. Thank you
 
pollinator
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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We have a relatively new one about a mile away, placed strategically to be in the way of our longest view out of the property if we're standing on the ground. It bothered me a lot esthetically and emotionally at first but I'm mostly ok with it now. If one is worried about the health effects of the darn things, my advice is to try to be as healthy otherwise as one can. And grow as many healthy plants and trees as you can. I personally feel trees protect us. This is probably more a spiritually-based concept than a science-based one.

I mostly wanted to post my empathy with your situation of having one of these looming over you.
 
gardener
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Location: Beaver County, Pennsylvania (~ zone 6)
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I'm not sure how much I believe in this but it's worth a shot. People have been "tower busting" cell towers with "orgonite" which apparently changes the tower's EMF and DOR emissions. If you google "orgonite" you'll get plenty of information.
 
Posts: 167
Location: Emporia, KS
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I'm inclined to agree with L. Jones, but since Randy specifically asked us not to try to change his opinions, may I suggest a Farraday cage? A few years back I visited the Montreal Biosphere: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montreal_Biosph%C3%A8re and one of the points they mention on the tour is that there is no cell phone reception inside the sphere, a point that all of us on the tour reflexively tested and verified. As you can see it is quite a beautiful structure, and something like it could easily be integrated into a permaculture design, for example by growing vines over it. The science of Farraday cages is not complicated; by adjusting the size of the holes you could block whatever types of radiation you want to keep out.

Just be aware that, as L. Jones pointed out, any radiation originating inside the cage such as from electrical and electronic appliances will not be blocked from you, and it is liable to be stronger than any originating outside the cage.
 
Posts: 9
Location: Sussex County, NJ
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So in terms of health dangers... a half mile is more then a safe distance. Radio waves ARE dangerous but it all comes down to exposure. High energy, low duration will begin to cook your innards and be extremely damaging. This is how a microwave operates... the radio waves used in WiFI and Cellular communications are in fact microwaves. Technicians working on live cell phone towers have very specific guidelines on how long they can remain present at a tower. You notice this effect when the cell phone in your hand appears to feel hot (the device isn't hot its just slowly cooking you). At a half mile your not going to be worried about this effect....

Low energy, long duration is questionable. There is no hard evidence that this is damaging, and (as others have pointed out) at this point exposure is damn near unavoidable. Anything with electricity is emitting it in small does, and all of the fun wireless electronics provide much more intense doses. There is a lot of speculation that could this could cause things like autism and slews of other unexplained "modern" illnesses.... The sad truth is that even if this speculation is found to be true... would society turn its back on these technologies? How many people need to get sick before being able to call 911 from the middle of nowhere has a net positive effect on society....

Whatever your concern... you can avoid the amount of time you spend near the thing and try an put obstacles between yourself and the source. In the summer time people get worse cell signal because those pesky green tree things have leaves that block and absorb the signal... Wire-lathe and plaster walls provide a Faraday cage effect...

If low energy, long duration turns out the be harmful... rural folk won't be as hard hit as city folk... In NYC there is a cell tower pointed strait down for something like every square yard of the city.... It could be worse... you could be within a half mile of 60 towers! (Although rural towers have higher energy output to cover more area).

In your permaculture planning you can treat this energy source like wind or any other on your property that needs mitigation. Meanwhile try to take advantage of the benefits these gadgets bring... Your going to be dealing with the ill effects either way.

 
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ok...relax. Cell phones are very high frequency, and very low power...you are well outside the HERP range of that tower...

20 years as a radar technician.

High freq..doesn't go very far...not very damaging..

Low freq...travels farther, and penetrates more material.

I would be more worried about high tensile lines.

 
Randy Gibson
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Thanks for almost all of the replies. I know this issue is a "hot button". I have never trusted folks that tell me 'move along, nothing to see here".

I've always said better safe than sorry.

BTW we have put in a hugelculture bed, and also have 6 varieties of bamboo coming up nicely in a different area, as well as our first garden.

Is there an "ignore" button here?
 
Lloyd George
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Did not mean to sound pedantic about it...and yeah, there are effects from non ionizing radiation...god knows I have soaked up some megawatts over the years...but a cell tower a half mile away is really not so bad.

Now those big honking transmission lines like we have a couple miles over? well..let's just say, my neighbors noisy dog can play under them...but I would not let my goats...lol


sorry if I offended...I usually save that for politics on facebook.
 
Posts: 112
Location: Mountain West of USA, Salt Lake City
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The EMF and radio wave strength can easily be measured with a detector. You can buy these as stand alone units or you can download an app to a smartphone (the irony is amazing!). With such a detector you can determine exactly how dangerous the tower is by referencing scientific literature on the subject.

Perhaps the people who are referencing "science" should back up their opinions with peer reviewed studies.

Electromagnetic fields affect transcript levels of apoptosis-related genes in embryonic stem cell-derived neural progenitor cells
Teodora Nikolova*, Jaroslaw Czyz*,1, Alexandra Rolletschek*, Przemyslaw Blyszczuk*, Jörg Fuchs*, Gabriele Jovtchev*, Jürgen Schuderer†, Niels Kuster† and Anna M. Wobus*,2

* Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK), Gatersleben, Germany;
† Foundation for Research on Information Technologies in Society (IT’IS), Zurich, Switzerland

2 Correspondence: In Vitro Differentiation Group, Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK), Correnstr.3, D-06466 Gatersleben, Germany. E-mail: wobusam@ipk-gatersleben.de

SPECIFIC AIMS

In the present study we aimed to investigate the effects of radiofrequency (RF) and extremely low frequency (ELF) electromagnetic fields (EMF) on the transcript level of cell cycle regulatory and apoptosis-related genes, on proliferation, apoptosis and chromosomal damage in neural progenitors generated from pluripotent mouse embryonic stem cells in vitro.

PRINCIPAL FINDINGS

1. ELF-EMF exposure affected bcl-2, bax, and GADD45 transcript levels in embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived neural progenitors
Pluripotent mouse ES cells were cultured as aggregates ("embryoid bodies," EBs) for 4 days followed by differentiation induction into neural progenitor and neuronal cells (Fig. 1 ). Differentiation of 4d EBs resulted in up to 85% of nestin-positive neural progenitor cells 4–6 days after plating. The cells were exposed to 50 Hz powerline ELF-EMF for 48 h at day 4+4, differentiated into the neuronal lineage, and analyzed at various time points. Magnetic flux density of 2 mT was applied with 5 min ON/ 30 min OFF intermittency cycles. The ELF exposure setup allowed studies under "blind" conditions and the control of temperature differences (±0.2°C) for sham- and ELF-EMF-exposed cultures. Quantitative (Q) RT-PCR analysis (Fig. 2 ) showed a relative increase of bcl-2 and bax mRNA levels at stage 4+11d relative to transcript levels of GAPDH, used as an internal standard. Transcript levels of the "growth arrest and DNA damage-inducible gene" GADD45 were down-regulated at terminal stage (4+23d, Fig. 2A ). Immunofluorescence analysis of EMF- and sham-exposed cells, however, showed no differences in the intracellular distribution and number of cells expressing neuronal (ßIII-tubulin, tyrosin hydroxylase, TH) or astrocytic (glial fibrillary acidic protein, GFAP) proteins.



Extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields as effectors of cellular responses in vitro: Possible immune cell activation

Myrtill Simkó1,*,
Mats-Olof Mattsson2

Article first published online: 26 JUL 2004

DOI: 10.1002/jcb.20198

Copyright © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Journal of Cellular Biochemistry

Volume 93, Issue 1, pages 83–92, 1 September 2004

Abstract

There is presently an intense discussion if electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure has consequences for human health. This include exposure to structures and appliances that emit in the extremely low frequency (ELF) range of the electromagnetic spectrum, as well as emission coming from communication devices using the radiofrequency part of the spectrum. Biological effects of such exposures have been noted frequently, although the implication for specific health effects is not that clear. The basic interaction mechanism(s) between such fields and living matter is unknown. Numerous hypotheses have been suggested, although none is convincingly supported by experimental data. Various cellular components, processes, and systems can be affected by EMF exposure. Since it is unlikely that EMF can induce DNA damage directly, most studies have examined EMF effects on the cell membrane level, general and specific gene expression, and signal transduction pathways. In addition, a large number of studies have been performed regarding cell proliferation, cell cycle regulation, cell differentiation, metabolism, and various physiological characteristics of cells. Although 50/60 Hz EMF do not directly lead to genotoxic effects, it is possible that certain cellular processes altered by exposure to EMF indirectly affect the structure of DNA causing strand breaks and other chromosomal aberrations. The aim of this article is to present a hypothesis of a possible initial cellular event affected by exposure to ELF EMF, an event which is compatible with the multitude of effects observed after exposure. Based on an extensive literature review, we suggest that ELF EMF exposure is able to perform such activation by means of increasing levels of free radicals. Such a general activation is compatible with the diverse nature of observed effects. Free radicals are intermediates in natural processes like mitochondrial metabolism and are also a key feature of phagocytosis. Free radical release is inducible by ionizing radiation or phorbol ester treatment, both leading to genomic instability. EMF might be a stimulus to induce an “activated state” of the cell such as phagocytosis, which then enhances the release of free radicals, in turn leading to genotoxic events. We envisage that EMF exposure can cause both acute and chronic effects that are mediated by increased free radical levels: (1) Direct activation of, for example macrophages (or other cells) by short-term exposure to EMF leads to phagocytosis (or other cell specific responses) and consequently, free radical production. This pathway may be utilized to positively influence certain aspects of the immune response, and could be useful for specific therapeutic applications. (2) EMF-induced macrophage (cell) activation includes direct stimulation of free radical production. (3) An increase in the lifetime of free radicals by EMF leads to persistently elevated free radical concentrations. In general, reactions in which radicals are involved become more frequent, increasing the possibility of DNA damage. (4) Long-term EMF exposure leads to a chronically increased level of free radicals, subsequently causing an inhibition of the effects of the pineal gland hormone melatonin. Taken together, these EMF induced reactions could lead to a higher incidence of DNA damage and therefore, to an increased risk of tumour development. While the effects on melatonin and the extension of the lifetime of radicals can explain the link between EMF exposure and the incidence of for example leukaemia, the two additional mechanisms described here specifically for mouse macrophages, can explain the possible correlation between immune cell system stimulation and EMF exposure. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.



Electromagnetic field effects on cells of the immune system: the role of calcium signaling

J Walleczek
Research Medicine and Radiation Biophysics Division, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, University of California 94720.

During the past decade considerable evidence has accumulated demonstrating that nonthermal exposures of cells of the immune system to extremely low-frequency (ELF) electromagnetic fields (< 300 Hz) can elicit cellular changes that might be relevant to in vivo immune activity. A similar responsiveness to nonionizing electromagnetic energy in this frequency range has also been documented for tissues of the neuroendocrine and musculoskeletal system. However, knowledge about the underlying biological mechanisms by which such fields can induce cellular changes is still very limited. It is generally believed that the cell membrane and Ca(2+)-regulated activity is involved in bioactive ELF field coupling to living systems. This article begins with a short review of the current state of knowledge concerning the effects of nonthermal levels of ELF electromagnetic fields on the biochemistry and activity of immune cells and then closely examines new results that suggest a role for Ca2+ in the induction of these cellular field effects. Based on these findings it is proposed that membrane- mediated Ca2+ signaling processes are involved in the mediation of field effects on the immune system.

 
Ben Stallings
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Location: Emporia, KS
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Elisha Gray wrote:You notice this effect when the cell phone in your hand appears to feel hot (the device isn't hot its just slowly cooking you).



Elisha, I'm skeptical about this claim. It would seem to be a simple hypothesis to test: use the phone for, say, 20 minutes held in hand, and 20 minutes on speaker, and take its temperature before and after. Can you point me to an existing study, or should I test it myself?

Elisha Gray wrote:In your permaculture planning you can treat this energy source like wind or any other on your property that needs mitigation. Meanwhile try to take advantage of the benefits these gadgets bring... Your going to be dealing with the ill effects either way.



I agree that as designers, it is our responsibility to design what the client wants, not [necessarily] what we think is right. If a client believes in feng shui or Sthãpatya Veda or biodynamics and talks about subtle energy flows, it is not the part of the designer to point out that said energy flows are unmeasurable with instruments; that is beside the point. In this case, Randy asked for advice and let us know what he wanted and did not want. IMHO it is not helpful to tell him that what he believes is harmful is not. It is a blessing that at least the energy in question obeys simple laws and is empirically measurable; that makes it much easier to determine whether a solution actually works or not!

BTW in my previous post about the Montreal Biosphere, I forgot to say that just because cell phones don't register a signal there doesn't mean radiation is not getting through. I believe the carrier signal and the data are on different frequencies. Certainly the framework of the Biosphere is nowhere near fine enough to block microwaves, for example.
 
Lloyd George
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Solid Sheets of metal will not work...A faraday cage is built to cancel specific frequencies, or bands of frequencies, elements of the cage must be designed with specific fractions of wavelengths...one cannot simply build a box which blocks electromagnetic radiation.....The wave mechanics get very very complex very quickly...
 
gardener
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Location: North Georgia / Appalachian mountains , Zone 7A
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Something that always comes to mind regarding this subject is the realization that the Earth's atmosphere is literally packed with radio frequency broadcasts of all kinds (not to mention the radio frequency waves coming from space itself)

AM radio, FM radio, satellite uplinks/downlinks, Cordless phones, Wii, X-box, TV station transmissions (and relay towers), communications radio for police, fire, business radio, taxi,etc. , Shortwave radio/ham radio, power transmission, wireless internet, weather transponders, buoys, marine radio, etc. etc.

For example of the "inescapability" of radio waves- The Voyager 1 satellite launched in 1977 is now at the edge of our solar system and we are STILL communicating with it.

I figure if I've made it this far in life while literally swimming through hundreds, thousands of radio waves of all kinds on a daily basis, then cell towers are just another thing on the list.

 
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Ground yourself or "earth" yourself... check it out... http://www.earthing.com/
 
Cris Bessette
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Paul Abbott wrote:Ground yourself or "earth" yourself... check it out... http://www.earthing.com/



To me, this "Earthing"effect probably is more psychological than any actual energy transfer between the planet and human bodies, but you never know.

I definitely feel good after working in the garden, getting my hands in the dirt, or swimming in a local river.

In reference to radio frequency waves though, grounding ones self to the earth actually increases your "reception" so to speak. Most radio transmitting / receiving equipment needs some kind of electrical connection to Earth ground to function well.
 
Elisha Gray
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Ben Stallings wrote:Can you point me to an existing study, or should I test it myself?



No... Only personal observation of smart phone devices transmitting data.... They will become too hot to hold but are completely cool to the touch. Without a control case in each observation of this effect is worthless because it could just be poor design or malfunctioning radio equipment of one device. Feel free to take it with a grain of "some crazy dude said so on the internet"


The control channel has better penetration then the other signals (its required to coordinate hand offs between towers).... Sure attenuation of a signal doesn't guarantee "less" overall exposure, but its a good start if your only concerned with putting some distance between the transmitter and where your children sleep....

On the faraday cage line of discussion... Wire lathe and plaster construction methods do wonders to disrupt signal transmission. Its why people with "old houses" can't get a signal inside.... Making sure that the wire lathe is grounded during construction would enhance this effect.
 
Randy Gibson
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Thank you Paul, even though you deleted some of my stuff, you are right. I like it here, Randy
 
Randy Gibson
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Hey Cris, I am in total agreement with you on us being surrounded by "waves" of one type or another. I just do not trust my health and well being to all of the "mad" scientists out there experimenting with God knows what.

the natural stuff I can deal with naturally! Our navy is wreaking havoc on ocean life with their "waves", and we are in the same boat so to speak in the air.

I realize there are things that can be avoided, as well as things that cannot. I try to be proactive in my health as well as with my children.

I keep seeing comments such as; it's not so bad, the signal is relatively weak, etc. I'd prefer "has no effect at all" etc.




Thanks again for all of the comments
 
Cris Bessette
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Randy Gibson wrote:

I realize there are things that can be avoided, as well as things that cannot. I try to be proactive in my health as well as with my children.

I keep seeing comments such as; it's not so bad, the signal is relatively weak, etc. I'd prefer "has no effect at all" etc.




Being that I have worked in electronics and communications for over 20 years- its probably too late for me
I understand where you are coming from though.

Personally, I'm more afraid of people talking on a cell phone while driving down the road than the cell phone itself.

 
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