HC Deb 23 October 2003 vol 411 c728W
Mrs. Lait

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advice has been issued by the Department on the effect of 3G telephone masts on public health. [133037]

Miss Melanie Johnson

The National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) has statutory responsibility for providing advice on health risks from exposure to electromagnetic fields including radio waves. It has received a number of inquiries about a recent Dutch study, the effects of third generation (3G) signals from the Netherlands and has posted a response statement on its website at www.nrpb.org.

Government advice on mobile phones and health is based on the Stewart Report, issued in May 2000 and available at www.iegmp.org.uk. In respect of base stations the report concluded: The balance of evidence indicates that there is no general risk to the health of people living near to base stations on the basis that exposures are expected to be small fractions of guidelines.

The operators of mobile telephone equipment, including 3G systems, should ensure that public exposure does not exceed the guidelines of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection. Measurements to date undertaken by the NRPB and the Radiocommunications Agency (www.radio.gov.uk) have confirmed that public exposures are very much lower than the international guidelines.

Research published since the Stewart Report is currently being reviewed by the NRPB's Advisory Group on Non-ionising Radiation. The group's review is expected in the next few months.

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