As 5G technologies emerge, over 200 eminent scientists worldwide have expressed concerns that 5G will have a devastating effect on the ecosystem and life on our planet. Alan Brind CEng MBCS CITP looks at some of the information that is available on this important question, and BCS has a view too.

Similar health concerns regarding 4G were expressed (see BCS's take here) and many studies prove the hazardous health and mental issues of 4G. 5G however constitutes a increase of 1,000 times in intensity and power levels… technology also used by the military as a crowd control by literally heating up the targets. Over 200 epidemiological studies undertaken near transmitters show eight different types of cancers related to this, and even people dying.

The US’s FCC does not intend to conduct any 5G testing regarding health impact, even though the proposed 5G installations will impact every single household; childhood development; and produce an increase in cancer rates and mental health issues. Extensive non-government scientific research shows 5G will be a biological and environmental nightmare due to its complex wave structure and ultra-high frequencies.

5G substantially increases exposure to RF-EMF fields, in addition to the 2G, 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi already in existence. RF-EMF is proven to be harmful to humans and the environment. Now, over 200 scientists and physicians from 35 countries, have recommended a moratorium on 5G roll-out until radiation levels are proven safe - particularly for children and pregnant women - and until hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists, independent from wireless industry influence.

Indian scientists in a 2013 study stated that radiation exposures to RF-EMF changes neurotransmitter functions, blood brain barrier, morphology, electrophysiology cellular metabolism, calcium efflux, and gene and protein expression in many types of cells, even at lower intensities. Most widely cited evidence implicating wireless phones concerns gliomas, a very serious brain tumor caused by a change in the genetic structure, such as mutated or missing genes. In the US, glioma already accounts for roughly half of all malignant brain tumors.

One Israeli study suggested elevated thyroid cancer risk. Another found that men carrying cell phones in their trouser pockets may suffer from low sperm count, whereas women carrying cell phones in bra’s are possibly vulnerable to breast cancer. Many people sensitive to electromagnetic fields complain of symptoms such as general weakness, headaches, nausea and dizziness. Around two-thirds of the non-industry funded studies found serious biological effects.

The Center for Disease Control presented new findings in 2018 of increasing brain, renal, hepatic, and thyroid cancers among individuals under 20 years old after analyzing 2001-2014 data from 48 states, covering 98% of the US population. Further, the American Brain Tumor Association’s most comprehensive analysis to date, found the incidence of anaplastic astrocytoma, tumors of the meninges, tumors of the sellar region and unclassified tumors have increased in young adults aged between 15-35.

In England the incidence of glioblastoma multiforme, the deadliest brain tumor linked to cell phone use, doubled between 1995 and 2015, in a analysis of national statistics published in 2018 by the Journal of the Environment and Public Health.

Another downside of 5G is distance limitations. Because it is only effective over short distances a higher density of antenna deployment is required for full-scale implementation, resulting in antennas spaced every 10 to 12 houses in urban areas, which massively increases exposure to 5G radiation. The US wireless industry estimates another 300,000 antennas will be required for coverage, which is the total number of antennas installed within the past 10 years.

Find out more about 5G and how it works