Newsletter (26 December 2003)

We wish our readers and friends Season’s Greetings and a Peaceful and Happy New Year!


New phone mast may end up killing me

(PETER WALSH) December 13, 2003 13:39

A PENSIONER is living in fear that a phone mast going up at the foot of his garden could kill him.

Mr Leathers, who lives with wife Eileen, 74, had major heart surgery 11 years ago and was advised by doctors not to have a mobile phone as it could affect the pacemaker.

Now the frightened couple are keeping a watching brief on his health when the eight metre mast finally goes into action.

“It's of great, great concern. I've hardly had a wink of sleep,” Mrs Leathers said. “I'm so, so worried about my dear husband, I really am. He won't be able to go down our front garden — I won't let him when this wretched thing starts working.

Last year Mr Leathers collected 300 signatures against the mast plan. Mrs Leathers added: “Ninety nine per cent of people were against the mast. I've been worried for so long and kept hoping that perhaps it was going to pass, but it's gone through.

She added: “They came and put the footings in on Thursday afternoon. I didn't notice them doing it otherwise I would have been down there and would have stood on the spot and wouldn't have moved.

Mr Leathers, who had a second pacemaker fitted in August, said: “With these pacemakers they advise you not to go to close to mobile phones so to have a mast at the bottom of your garden is the last thing you want.”

“It's really distressing for my wife. We have written another letter to the director of Orange but I don't know if that will do any good.”

The telecommunications giant, which first applied for permission for the mast nearly three years ago, has ploughed ahead with plans for the mast after winning an appeal against South Norfolk Council's decision to refuse permission.

The long-running saga which saw Orange refused permission for the mast seven times ended in May after the company took its case to the Department of the Environment who overturned the decision.

South Norfolk MP Richard Bacon was behind the campaign to stop the mast being put in the village and was “very disappointed” when the decision to refuse permission for the mast was overturned.

Mr Leathers said despite assurances to the contrary, he was still unsure about how safe mast actually were : “They said with BSE no you can't catch it and the next thing people are dying a few years later. Is this going to be the same thing.”

A spokesman for Orange said the electrical field strengths “in areas accessible to the general public around a mobile phone transmitter” were “too weak” to interfere with the operation of pacemakers.

But Dr Ian Gibson, MP for Norwich North, who has been a long-time supporter of the Evening News's mast campaign, said: “On the current evidence available this may be true, but the minister concerned is taking further evidence.”

“In my view the company should not be 100 per cent sure.”

The Evening News launched the Put Masts on Hold campaign in December 2000 to stop masts being built next to homes and schools until research proves they are safe.


Re: Municipal revolt in Denmark

* Several Danish municipalities decided for a long time ago, to put a ban to the raising of 3G masts.

In the end he concluded, that mobilphones were definitely dangerous and could cause brain cancer to all, but masts were completely harmless.

* masts were completely harmless?

Dr. George Carlo, (October 1999). "I am concerned that the wireless industry is missing a valuable opportunity by dealing with these public health concerns through politics, creating illusions that more research over the next several years helps consumers today, and false claims that regulatory compliance means safety. The better choice by the wireless industry would be to implement measured steps aimed at true consumer protection."

Messages from Dr Miguel Muntané


The way to prevent cellular masts near home

Hopefully it will be helpful to other people, too:

The way to prevent cellular mast near home: to demand compensation

Dror Marmur

Maariv 22.12.2003

If you want to prevent a threatening mast installation near your house, you can demand commitment from the cellular companies to fund any law suit that will be filed for compensation as a result of  the installation near you.

The method was found by the local committee in Petah Tikva, whose demand to write a warranty (transfers the responsibility to every law suit) from Cellcom company, lead eventually to the company withdrawal from its intention to erect antennas in the city. The National Planning and Construction Council decided to enable warranty requirement from companies, in order to protect the local committees in case of future law suits which will prove damages. Cellcom company asked to erect antenna in Petah Tikva. The local committee decided to demand a warranty, the cellular company opposed and it prevented the construction approval for the company. Cellcom appealed but withdrew the appeal a week later. Lawyer Ron Zin, who represented the local committee, said that "It turns out to be that the demand itself for a warranty, prevented erecting the antenna".

Informant: Iris Atzmon


Nothing Virtual About Global Warming


FTAA Protests: Amnesty Says Miami Police May Have Broken UN Laws


Yellowstone victory: court stops snowmobiles

This past Tuesday, a federal judge handed down a stunning victory for NRDC and our co-plaintiffs in our lawsuit to keep snowmobiles out of Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. NRDC BioGems Defenders have been petitioning the Bush administration during the past three years to protect these parks and their wildlife, employees and visitors from the overwhelming air and noise pollution emitted by tens of thousands of snowmobiles each winter. You've taken action to protect Yellowstone from these harmful snowmobiles, so I wanted to be sure to let you know of this dramatic turn of events.

Last year the Bush administration, at the behest of the snowmobile industry, reversed the Clinton administration rule to phase out snowmobiles in Yellowstone and Grand Teton, which was adopted following many scientific studies and extensive public input. The decision by U.S District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan reinstates the phase-out and requires the Park Service to come up with a plan for snowmobiles for all national parks.

The court decision is not the end of the matter, however. The snowmobile industry has already announced it plans to appeal, and Congress may decide to try to legislatively reverse or modify the court decision. We'll be sure to let you know if and when we need you to contact your senators and representatives about this.

For now, though, thank you again for all of your efforts on behalf of Yellowstone and please join us in reveling in this victory as we begin the new year.


John H. Adams


Natural Resources Defense Council