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Historic Ruling Challenges FCC on Outdated Wireless Safety Guidelines — August 15, 2021

How to Hardwire Your Smartphone, Tablet, and Home via Ethernet — July 1, 2021

Historic Ruling Challenges FCC on Outdated Wireless Safety Guidelines — August 15, 2021

On August 13, 2021, wireless safety advocates won a historic victory in a petition for review that challenged the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) on its outdated wireless safety guidelines. The case was filed in response to the FCC's decision in December 2019 to retain its outdated 1996 safety limits, despite all the scientific evidence submitted to the FCC on the harmful effects occurring at levels well below these safety limits. Over 10,000 pages of evidence were submitted for this case detailing wireless radiation's effects on humans, wildlife, and the environment. Originally two separate cases, EHT et al. v. FCC and CHD v. FCC were later consolidated into one case.

Non-Cancer Effects

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia determined that the FCC's order was "arbitrary and capricious in its failure to respond to record evidence that exposure to RF radiation at levels below the Commission's current limits may cause negative health effects unrelated to cancer." Furthermore, the court found that the FCC "failed to provide a reasoned explanation for its determination that its guidelines adequately protect against the harmful effects of exposure to radiofrequency radiation unrelated to cancer." In particular, the court mentioned areas which need to be addressed, including the impacts of RF radiation on children, the implications of long-term exposure and RF pulsation or modulation, and environmental harm.

Cancer Effects

Although the petitioners raised the National Toxicology Program (NTP) and Ramazzini Institute study as evidence for increased cancer risks from RF radiation, the court deemed that the FCC had met the legal requirement to provide a "reasoned response" to this evidence. The FCC's "reasoned response" was based on the difficulty of extrapolating from research on rats exposed to older 2G and 3G wireless technology to humans exposed to newer technologies with different exposure parameters. Note that this "reasoned response" does not imply that the current standards are adequate to protect against cancer. The petitioners held that had these 2018 studies been available earlier, "the IARC would have likely classified RF radiation as "probably carcinogenic," rather than "possibly carcinogenic.""

Nonthermal Biological Effects

Although the FCC's order had cited information from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the court did not accept this response as a "reasoned explanation" for the decision to terminate its notice of inquiry. The FCC had cited the FDA's website, which said the "weight of evidence has not linked cell phones with any health problems" and mentioned a letter in which a Director at the FDA claimed the NTP study had been reviewed but it had been concluded that no changes to the current standards were warranted. The court decision indicated such "conclusory statements" did not count as a reasoned explanation because there was no assurance the FDA considered relevant factors. In particular, the court mentioned "a failure by the FDA to address the implication of Petitioners' studies: The factual premise—the non-existence of non-thermal biological effects—underlying the current RF guidelines may no longer be accurate."

Press Releases and Case Documents

See the extensive documentation prepared by the Environmental Health Trust and Children's Health Defense below.

Implications of This Precedent-Setting Case

The implication of this precedent-setting case is that the FCC has not responsibly updated its 25-year old safety standards based on new scientific evidence, including evidence of non-thermal effects. The Bioinitiative Report of 2007 and 2012, the NTP and Ramazzini studies, scientific studies on oxidative stress, impacts to the blood-brain-barrier, effects on sperm, prenatal exposure, and so forth, have not been adequately addressed by the Commission. Many have pointed to the FCC's guidelines as protective of health, but the FCC's guidelines are based on outdated scientific evidence. In the meantime, growing numbers of people are becoming adversely affected by wireless devices and telecommunications equipment. Health effects occur at many orders of magnitude below the FCC's safety guidelines. Compare the FCC's 1996 guidelines with other wireless safety limits in the table below and consider the many biological effects occurring far below official safety limits.

Raising Awareness About Our Outdated Safety Guidelines

Prior to a revision of existing federal safety guidelines, a major challenge is to raise public awareness about how to make safer choices when existing safety guidelines are inadequate. In 2018, retired Microsoft Canada President, Frank Clegg, who started Canadians for Safe Technology, also spoke about the need for consumer warnings and safer default settings on devices. See Frank Clegg: Wireless Tech Forum Making Technology Safer.

How to Hardwire Your Smartphone, Tablet, and Home via Ethernet —July 1, 2021

Concerned about hours of constant wireless exposure every day from online meetings? Fortunately, many smartphones and tablets can now be wired to access the Internet via Ethernet cable even though they do not come with an Ethernet interface. This is possible through an appropriate Ethernet adapter or a multiport hub containing an Ethernet interface. Even if your home is not wired for Ethernet, there is also a quick and easy way to set up home internet for Ethernet using existing electrical cabling and some powerline adapters. Changing to a wired setup may protect against the numerous effects, which have been reported from wireless exposure, including oxidative stress, reduced levels of glutathione, an important antioxidant for a healthy immune system, depression, sleep disturbances, and so on. (See Bioinitative Research Summaries 2020 and Pall 2016).

ethernet multiport hub
iPad Pro Connected to Multiport Hub with Ethernet / Photo Credits: EMFWise      

For details on how to obtain the necessary adapters for hardwiring your mobile device or your home and for recommendations when you cannot hardwire your internet, see the following new articles.

How to Hardwire a Smartphone, Tablet, or Laptop for Internet Access.

To hardwire smartphones, tablets, or laptops, obtain an Ethernet adapter or a multiport hub containing an Ethernet interface which supports the interface on your device. For example, many Apple devices support USB-C or Lightning interfaces. When obtaining a multiport hub, it may be beneficial to also obtain a USB grounding cable since most mobile device chargers do not ground the device while it is charging, and the body voltage measurements may be in an unhealthy range.

Read More

How to Hardwire Your Home's Internet via Internet over Powerline

Preparing your device for Ethernet access is of no use unless you have access to your router's Ethernet port or a separate internet-ready Ethernet port that is connected to the router. The good news is that there are quick and easy ways to wire one's home for Ethernet such as Internet over Powerline. This requires the use of at least two powerline ethernet adapters, one connected to the router by Ethernet cable and one connected to your device by Ethernet cable.

Read More

Consider an Airtube Headset
If You Cannot Hardwire Your Internet

If you cannot hardwire your cell phone or tablet via Ethernet adapter, or if your home cannot be wired for Ethernet, consider using speakerphone or an airtube headset.

Read More



Wearable Wireless Watches: How Fitness Fans can practice Safer Tech — June 18, 2019

A Growing Database of Scientific Studies and Worldwide Policies on Wireless Radiation — June 18, 2019

In Memoriam — Martin Blank (1933-2018) — June 18, 2019


Commentary on Newsweek Article: “Do Cellphones Cause Cancer? Government Study Reveals 'Stunningly Important' Findings” — August 27, 2018

A Common Mechanism for Chemicals and EMF in Neurodegenerative diseases? — May 1, 2018


Unplugging Electric Hospital Beds May Accelerate Recovery of the Sick and Elderly — May 25, 2017

Warning: While Simultaneously Charging and Using Cellphones or Tablets, Body Voltage Measurements May be Elevated — May 23, 2017


In search of a Mobile Phone App To Limit Radiation Exposure and Increase Battery Life — August 5, 2016

So much for saying EMF is only as carcinogenic as coffee... the IARC recently removed coffee from its Group 2B carcinogen list. — July 18, 2016


Wired Baby Monitor - January 8, 2013

EMF Safety Tips at the Hospital - January 8, 2013


In Search of “Safer” Wireless — Wi-Fi - July 24, 2012

How to Potentially Save Your Brain - May 21, 2012

Lessons from Anti-Cancer Nutrition - April 20, 2012

Potential Benefits of Vitamin D for Electrosensitivity - February 1, 2012

High Iron Content “In the Brain” – Part II - January 31, 2012

Bad Reception Can Boost Some Cell Phones’ Power - January 27, 2012

Could High Iron Stores be a Risk Factor for Electrosensitivity? - January 26, 2012


Magnetic Fields that Can Be Easily Fixed - December 29, 2011

Acupuncture, Acupressure, and the Body Electric - December 20, 2011

Electrosensitivity/MCS Pitfalls: Optimizing One Health Factor at the Expense of Another - November 30, 2011

Connecting the Dots: Asthma and EMF? - November 25, 2011

Deception, Denial, and the Industry of Doubt - November 21, 2011

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