Thursday, September 28, 2017

What's Wrong with Cell Phone Radiation Exposure Limits?

Does the FCC Adequately Enforce its Cell Phone Radiation Exposure Limits?

Last September, the Washington, DC law firm, Swankin & Turner, sent a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that questioned whether the agency adequately enforced its cell phone radiation exposure limits.

The letter raised four areas of concern about current testing procedures and posed twelve specific questions.

One concern is that the FCC's two-decade-old cell phone testing procedures allow for a 30% margin of error. This means that a cell phone with a Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) greater than 1.231 W/kg can actually exceed the FCC's exposure limit of 1.6 W/kg. The law firm's clients estimate that about 75% of the cell phones on the market may exceed the current exposure limits.

In 2012, the U.S. General Accountability Office, an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for Congress, presented a report to the FCC which raised concerns about the adequacy of cell phone testing procedures. The Commission has yet to address the GAO's concerns so it is unlikely that the FCC will provide a timely response to Swankin &Turner.

The FCC's lack of responsiveness to the Congress and to the American people is explained in a Harvard publication by Norm Alster, "Captured agency: How the Federal Communications Commission is dominated by the industries it presumably regulates."

Swankin & Turner sent the letter to the FCC on behalf of its clients -- The National Institute for Science, Law and Public Policy and Environmental Health Trust.

The eleven page letter can be downloaded at:

June 19, 2017

Current Cell Phone Radiation Standards 
Do Not Protect Human Health

National and international regulatory limits for radiofrequency radiation (RFR) exposure from cell phones and cell towers are outdated according to Dr. Yuri Grigoriev. Moreover, the standards are inadequate to protect human health, especially the health of children and those who are hypersensitive to RFR.

Dr. Grigoriev calls for research on the biological effects of chronic exposure to low-intensity RFR in order to develop stronger RFR standards, “bearing in mind, above all, long-term exposure on the brain at all levels of development.”  He argues that until we adopt protective regulations, we should “provide the public with full information on the possible dangers of mobile communication for their health. “ 

Finally, he appeals to his colleagues “Do not sin against the truth!”

Dr. Grigoriev is the Chairman of the Russian National Committee on Non-ionizing Radiation Protection (RNCNIRP), and  a member of the International Advisory Committee on Electromagnetic Fields and Health for the World Health Organization.

Following are excerpts from Dr. Grigoriev's book chapter and a link to download the document.

Grigoriev Y. “Methodology of Standards Development for EMF RF in Russia and by International Commissions: Distinctions in Approaches." In Markov, M (Ed.), Dosimetry in Bioelectromagnetics. Chapter 15. pp. 315-337. Boca Raton, FL: Taylor & Francis. 2017.


“The ultimate goal of electromagnetic field (EMF) standards is to protect human health. Exposure limits are intended to protect against adverse health effects of EMF exposure across the entire frequency range and modulation.”

“The Russian standard for base stations has already been in existence for more than 30 years and is more rigid than the maximum level recommended by the International Commission of Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). This distinction has been discussed at scientific meetings for many years—unfortunately, without result.
The second EMF source of mobile communication—the mobile phone—has no sufficient substantiation on exposure limits. The irradiation of a brain is not limited and is not supervised. The children using mobile phones are especially at high risk.”

“The first RF EMF standard for the population, SanPiN 848-70, was approved by the Ministry of Health of the USSR in 1970 and was considered for the population exposure limit of 1 μW/cm2 in the microwave band of 300 MHz to 300 GHz. In 1978, the USSR  Ministry of Health approved the next SanPiN No. 1823-78. In this document, MPL for the population in the frequency range of 300 MHz to 300 GHz was set as 5 μW/cm2.”

“Currently, three questions remain relevant for standardization: 
1. Are there nonthermal biological effects of low levels of RF EMF?2. Is it possible that the irradiation of the population with RF EMF throughout human life leads to increased adverse biological effects?3. Is there a “threshold” level of exposure to RF EMF, and if so how do we define it?”
“….These results together with numerous studies conducted by scientists from many countries provide direct evidence that RF EMF intensity of up to 10 mW/cm2 may have a nonthermal mechanism of action.”

“There is evidence that RF EMF can cause development of tumors in the brain of mobile phone users after a 10–12 year “waiting period” (Hardell and Calberg, 2009). The term 'heavy users' that appeared in some publications linked the unfavorable bioeffects of the prolonged mobile phone use to accumulative processes of adverse biological effects.

It has been shown that after a single exposure to low-intensity RF EMF, certain changes in the brain EEG occur (Lukyanova, 1999, 2015). During the first hours after exposure, there is a restoration of bioelectrical activity of the brain, which indicates the insinuation of compensatory processes. Naturally, in these conditions, a repeated exposure might weaken compensatory processes and lead to development of the process of accumulation (Lukyanov et al., 2015).”

“The threshold level is the lowest level of exposure of the physical factor (EMF RF), below which the risk to public health does not exist, is introduced in analogy with the principles of ionizing radiation.  Given the complexity of this problem, we propose to determine the threshold level as a criterion for the body’s response to RF EMF exposure, but on the condition that this response should not be pathological. This reaction may be compensatory/ adaptive and should exist within the physiological range.”

“When determining the limit values for base stations, the RNCNIRP decided to leave the limit value for the general public of 10 μW/cm² unchanged, as it was set in 1984. This value was well justified by previous research, and so there was no need for changing it (Vinogradov and Dumanskiy, 1974, 1975; Shandala and Vinogradov, 1982; Shandala et al., 1983, 1985; Vinogradov and Naumenko, 1986; Vinogradov et al., 1999).

It is important to note that the MPL of 10 μW/cm² for the population has remained intact for more than 30 years. Previously, the standard was used only in Russia and the countries formerly in coalition with the Soviet Union. Now, MPLs of 10 μW/cm2 or less are used as RF legal exposure limits or nonbinding recommendations for national, regional, urban, or sensitive areas for at least 20 countries worldwide (Figure 15.1).”

“The adoption of the standard in 2003 for the mobile phone in terms of formalizing requirements for methods of measuring the near field and for the establishment of a threshold for the evaluation of RF EMF exposure on brain function as a critical organ was not optimal….There was a proposal to use a safety factor of 5 and set to the cell phone MPL at 100 μW/cm2 (Russian Standard, 2003—SanPiN 2.1.8/ It should be emphasized that SanPiN 2.1.8/, for the first time, introduced the recommendation to limit cell phone use for persons younger than 18 years as well as pregnant women.”

“The following factors allow us to conclude that the potential risk to the health of children who use mobile phones is very high:

– Absorption of electromagnetic energy by the head of a child is much higher than in the head of adults (children’s brain tissue has a higher conductivity, the size of the child’s head is smaller, and the skull bone of the child is thin).
– The distance from the antenna to the brain is short, because the child’s ear shell is very soft and has almost no layer of the cartilage.
– The child’s body is more sensitive to EMFs than adults.
– The child’s brain is more vulnerable to the effects of EMF.
– The brains of children have a greater propensity to accumulation of adverse reactions in the context of repeated exposures to EMF.
– EMF RF may have an adverse effect on cognitive functions.
– Today’s children use mobile phones at an early age and will continue to use them during their lifespan, and so the duration of the exposure of children to electromagnetic radiation will be substantially larger than that of modern adult users.”

“According to the members of the Russian National Committee of Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (RNCNIRP, 2008), some possible disorders that might originate in children who use mobile phones include weakened memory, decline of attention, reduction  of mental and cognitive abilities, irritability, sleep disturbance, tendency to stress reactions, and increased epileptic readiness.

It is also possible to expect the development of the adverse effects in older age as the result of the accumulation of adverse effects both in cells and in various functional systems of the body: brain tumors, tumors of the auditory and vestibular nerves (at age 25–30 years), Alzheimer’s disease, “dementia,” depressive syndrome, and other manifestations of degeneration of the nervous structures of the brain (at age 50–60 years).

Children users of mobile phones are not able to know that their brains are subjected to EMF, risking their health. This is a significant factor in moral ethics for parents. Also important is that the risk of EMF RF exposure is not less than the risk for children’s health from tobacco or alcohol.”

“Currently, international standards are developed by ICNIRP, IEEE, CENELEC, and other international and national commissions. Their methodology uses only the results of experimental animal studies obtained under the conditions of acute effects and thermal-level EMF RF (Bernhard, 1999).

Any standard safety margin depends on the predetermined threshold. Outside Russia, the threshold level is determined on the basis of “stable pathological reactions” in the conditions of acute exposure to RF EMF heat level (WHO Handbook, 2002).”

“Our long experience with ionizing and non-ionizing radiations led us to formulate the following postulate: “The development of hygiene standards for the population should take into account the actual conditions of EMF RF exposure of the population—local or total exposure, acute single exposure or chronic, constant, or repeated exposure; the functional importance of ‘critical organ’ or ‘critical body systems’; and effect on all population groups or only on certain limited groups of the population” (Grigoriev, 1997, 2008a).

Taking into account this postulate, we can make a clear conclusion that the Western standards do not meet the basic hygienic requirements …. Western regulations do not take into account events that occurred for the first time during the life of our civilization. Children who use mobile phones voluntarily irradiate their brains. This EMF RF exposure of the brain occurs every day, and the fractional exposure is projected for many years.

We criticized the Western standards because they do not correspond to the actual conditions of RF EMF exposure on the population (report in 2003 at an international seminar in China, Grigoriev et al., 2003b).”

“This analysis of the methodology of RF EMF regulation abroad allows us to conclude that the current so-called International Recommendations/Guidelines (ICNIRP, 1998) and the IEEE Standards (S95.1-2005), CENELEC (EN 50166-2.2000) do not correspond to existing conditions of RF EMF exposure on the population and cannot guarantee the safety of the public health.

Interestingly, this view was confirmed by the European Parliament in 2009 ….”

“We believe that it is necessary within the framework of the development problems of the methodology of EMF RF standards to specifically consider additional criteria for risk assessment related to the exposure of children to RF EMF who became active users of mobile phones.

Western experts working on new standards, completely ignoring the problem of childhood cell phone use do not take into account the WHO opinion on the higher sensitivity of children to environmental factors in the International standards: ‘children are different from adults.’

Children have a unique vulnerability. As they grow and develop, there are “windows of susceptibility”: periods when their organs and systems may be particularly sensitive to the effect of certain environmental threats (WHO, 2003).”

“The electromagnetic burden on the population is growing daily. At the same time, over the last 20 years, debates are still continuing on the following topic: Is the health of the population at risk because of increasing pollution due to RF EMF from the base stations and mobile phones?

The brains of almost all people on earth are exposed to EMF radiation. However, practically, there are no restrictions for the use of mobile communications. Having the advantages and convenience of mobile communication, the population is ignoring the information about the possible risks to their health. This threat affects everybody, including children aged 3–4 years. Pregnant women do not protect their fetuses from exposure to EMF.

The scientific community is watching this picture and is waiting for the results of this uncontrolled global experiment (Markov and Grigoriev, 2013). We saw similar hazards during the Victorian period in Britain (wallpaper with mercury and toys with lead).”

“…there are four postulates that show the risk to public health from mobile communication (Grigoriev, 2013). It is necessary to convince the population and to create an environment of reasonable restrictions on the use of this  communication.

The first postulate: ‘EMF—harmful type of radiation.’ Mobile communication uses RF EMF. This type of electromagnetic radiation is considered harmful. Exceeding the permissible levels can cause disease; therefore, it requires hygienic control. This is the absolute truth.

The second postulate: ‘The brain and EMF.’ The mobile phone is an open source of EMF, and there is no protection for valuable human organs. EMFs affect the brain during mobile phone use. Nerve structures inside the internal ear (the vestibular and the auditory apparatus) are located directly under the beam of EMF. This is the absolute truth.

The third postulate: ‘Children and EMF.’ For the first time, in history the child’s brain is subjected to RF EMF. There are no results of the study of chronic local RF EMF exposure on the brain. Children are more vulnerable to external environmental factors. This opinion was expressed by WHO (2003) and in the Parma Declaration (WHO European Region, 2010). This is the absolute truth.

Fourth postulate: ‘The lack of adequate recommendations/standards.’ There is no agreement on the methodology for determining the EMF RF remote control and for the development of international standards, and there are no results from 20 years of debate on this issue. This is a real fact.”

“I believe that the time has come to provide the public with full information on the possible dangers of mobile communication for their health. The abovementioned four postulates allow the public to comprehend the likely risks to their health from uncontrolled use of mobile communication.”

“I appeal to colleagues: Do not sin against the truth!”


“Of course, new sources of electromagnetic radiation are creating additional problems in the development of standards. Public health protection issues in connection with the use of mobile communications have become completely different. The use of mobile phones has led to the local long-term RF EMF exposure to the brain. The normative level is not considered a permanent RF EMF exposure on the brain of the user. Existing regulations do not address to the real hazard RF EMF exposure. Given these circumstances, standards cannot currently guarantee the well-being of adults and children.

Children mobile phone users were included in the group of high risk. In this regard, there is a need to develop more appropriate stringent standards to ensure absolute security for growing children. Existing standards should take into consideration the vulnerable group of people hypersensitive to RF EMF.

Given that the current regulations are outdated, it is necessary to carry out complex research into possible biological effects on conditions of chronic exposure to low-intensity EMF RF, bearing in mind, above all, long-term exposure on the brain at all levels of development.

As a temporary measure of limiting exposure to EMF on the population, it is necessary to introduce the concept of “voluntary risk”; that is, mobile telephony should be a product of self-selection on the background of the official public information about possible health hazards.”

The document can be downloaded from the Radiation Research Trust:

June 23, 2014

What's Wrong with Cell Phone Radiation 
Exposure Limits?

In 1996, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted a cell phone radiation exposure limit based upon a measure called the Specific Absorption Rate or SAR.  A SAR testing procedure was developed that is applied to all cell phones sold in the U.S.

In the U.S and about a half dozen other countries, cell phones are allowed to have a maximum SAR of 1.6 watts per kilogram of tissue averaged over one gram of tissue.  Many countries, however, adopted a more permissive standard, that was developed by a self-appointed body, known as the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection or ICNIRP. The ICNIRP standard allows for up to 2.0 watts per kilogram of tissue averaged over ten grams of tissue. 

Recent studies have determined that the head can absorb 2-3 times the radiation from a phone based on the ICNIRP standard as compared to the U.S. standard. Nonetheless, the cell phone industry in the U.S. has been lobbying the FCC to adopt the ICNIRP standard using the euphemism, "harmonization," to justify this weakening of the regulatory standard.

Considerable research, however, suggests that both the U.S. and ICNIRP standards do not adequately protect us from health risks due to exposure to cell phone radiation. The Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) and testing procedures are based upon four fallacies:

1) The SAR standards assume that a thermal (or heating) effect is the only way that microwave radiation emitted by cell phones can harm tissue.

However, many studies have found that exposure to low-intensity, microwave radiation at non-thermal levels where there is no measurable temperature change can produce DNA damage, reactive oxygen species, and stress proteins, and can alter brain activity and open the blood-brain-barrier. The SAR standards do not protect mobile device users from these non-thermal effects.

2) The standards are based upon averaging cell phone radiation exposure over one or ten grams of tissue and over time.

However, peak exposures and/or "hot spots" which damage tissue are not considered.

3) The standards only consider the immediate, acute effects of cell phone radiation exposure.

However, chronic effects due to long-term exposure are ignored.

4) The SAR test procedure uses a Specific Anthropomorphic Mannequin (SAM) which simulates a very large man's head and body.

The standards do not address exposure to fetuses, children, or women, different tissue types, or metallic objects worn on the body that influence the absorption of radiation (e.g., metal eye glasses, earrings, or dental braces).  Research indicates that a child's brain absorbs 2-3 times the radiation of an adult's brain.


Evaluation of Specific Absorption Rate as a Dosimetric Quantity for Electromagnetic Fields Bioeffects

DJ Panagopoulos, O Johansson, GL Carlo. Evaluation of Specific Absorption Rate as a Dosimetric Quantity for Electromagnetic Fields Bioeffects. PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e62663. Published online 2013 Jun 4. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062663


Purpose  To evaluate SAR as a dosimetric quantity for EMF bioeffects, and identify ways for increasing the precision in EMF dosimetry and bioactivity assessment.

Methods  We discuss the interaction of man-made electromagnetic waves with biological matter and calculate the energy transferred to a single free ion within a cell. We analyze the physics and biology of SAR and evaluate the methods of its estimation. We discuss the experimentally observed non-linearity between electromagnetic exposure and biological effect.

Results  We find that: a) The energy absorbed by living matter during exposure to environmentally accounted EMFs is normally well below the thermal level. b) All existing methods for SAR estimation, especially those based upon tissue conductivity and internal electric field, have serious deficiencies. c) The only method to estimate SAR without large error is by measuring temperature increases within biological tissue, which normally are negligible for environmental EMF intensities, and thus cannot be measured.

Conclusions  SAR actually refers to thermal effects, while the vast majority of the recorded biological effects from man-made non-ionizing environmental radiation are non-thermal. Even if SAR could be accurately estimated for a whole tissue, organ, or body, the biological/health effect is determined by tiny amounts of energy/power absorbed by specific biomolecules, which cannot be calculated. Moreover, it depends upon field parameters not taken into account in SAR calculation. Thus, SAR should not be used as the primary dosimetric quantity, but used only as a complementary measure, always reporting the estimating method and the corresponding error. Radiation/field intensity along with additional physical parameters (such as frequency, modulation etc) which can be directly and in any case more accurately measured on the surface of biological tissues, should constitute the primary measure for EMF exposures, in spite of similar uncertainty to predict the biological effect due to non-linearity.


For further information about the FCC review of the SAR exposure limits in the U.S. see ...

FCC Needs Input on Radio Frequency Radiation

Does The FCC Plan To Rubber Stamp Outdated Cell Phone Radiation Standards?

Comments submitted to FCC re: "FCC Proposes Changes in the Commission's Rules and Procedures Regarding Human Exposure to RadioFrequency Electromagnetic Energy" (Proceeding Number 03-137), Feb 5, 2013

What's Wrong with the GAO Report on Cell Phone Radiation?

Monday, September 25, 2017

New Apple Watch Reignites Concerns over Cell Phone Radiation

The San Francisco Chronicle published an article today, "New Apple Watch reignites concerns over radiation" (Catherine Ho, September 25, 2017).

Since the new Apple Watch can operate like a cell phone, some public health researchers and medical experts have raised concerns about the potential health risks from exposure to the radiation emitted by this device.
"There is no definitive data from federal health regulators showing a direct link between cell phone radiation — also known as radio frequency radiation — and health problems in humans. But recent research indicates that exposure to cell phone radiation is the likely cause of malignant growths in the brains and hearts of male rats, and can cause neurological damage in rats born to mothers that were exposed to the radiation during pregnancy."
The article mentions my successful lawsuit against the California Department of Public Health. It also discusses the cell phone radiation and cancer study conducted by the National Toxicology Program.
“ 'That’s going to up the exposure and probably increase the risk to the user over the long term,' said Joel Moskowitz, a researcher at UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health. 'I don’t think there’s anyone who can say definitively this is going to hurt the user. But many scientists would say we don’t have enough information to claim these devices are safe.' ”
"We have evidence that levels of radiation far weaker than those of a cell phone can be damaging to human sperm as well as to the progeny produced by animals that are pregnant and exposed to this throughout their pregnancy.”Devra Davis, Environmental Health Trust
Neither Apple nor the CTIA would comment on the story.

The article is available at


Specific Absorption Rates (SARs) for the Apple Watch (Series 3)

Apple has posted information on its website about the Specific Absorption Rate or SAR for the latest Series 3 Apple Watches.

Before reading what Apple reports (see below), I suggest you read the following posts on my website which discuss why the SAR is not a reliable measure of the potential health risks from using a wireless device on or near your body.

Apple Watch Series 3 RF Exposure Information

Apple Watch has been tested and meets applicable limits for radio frequency (RF) exposure.

Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) refers to the rate at which the body absorbs RF energy. SAR limits depend on whether Apple Watch is used against the head or on the wrist. In some countries, the SAR limit is 1.6 watts per kilogram averaged over 1 gram of tissue for use against the head and 4.0 watts per kilogram averaged over 10 grams of tissue for use on the wrist. In other countries, the SAR limit is 2.0 watts per kilogram averaged over 10 grams of tissue for use against the head and 4.0 watts per kilogram averaged over 10 grams of tissue for use on the wrist.

During testing, Apple Watch radios are set to their highest transmission levels and placed in positions that simulate use against the head, with 10 mm separation, and on the wrist, with no separation. When placing Apple Watch near your face, keep at least 10 mm of separation to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

Although this device has been tested to determine SAR in each band of operation, not all bands are available in all areas. Bands are dependent on your service provider’s wireless networks.

The highest SAR values are as follows:

GPS and Cellular Models:

Model A1860

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.53
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.18

Model A1889

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.29
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.15

Model A1890

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.16
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.14

Model A1861

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.52
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.34

Model A1891

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.35
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.18

Model A1892

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.25
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.14

GPS –only Models:

Model A1858

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.17
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.034

Model A1859

1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.11
4.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Wrist: 0.023

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Cell Tower Health Effects

Federal regulations protect the public only from the thermal (i.e., heating) risk due to short-term exposure to high intensity, cell tower radiation. The Federal regulations ignore the hundreds of studies that find harmful bio-effects from long-term exposure to non-thermal levels of cell phone radiation.
The Telecommunications Act of 1996 does not allow communities to stop the siting of cell towers for health reasons. Nevertheless, landlords may be liable for any harm caused by cell phone radiation emitted by towers situated on their property.
Localities need to organize and change the Federal law to protect public health and wildlife from exposure to microwave radiation emitted by mobile phone base stations.

Following are some resources regarding the health effects of exposure to cell tower radiation. I will occasionally update this page.
Related posts

Impact of radiofrequency radiation on DNA damage and antioxidants in peripheral blood lymphocytes of humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations

Zothansiama, Zosangzuali M, Lalramdinpuii M, Jagetia GC. Impact of radiofrequency radiation on DNA damage and antioxidants in peripheral blood lymphocytes of humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations. Electromagn Biol Med. 2017 Aug 4:1-11. doi: 10.1080/15368378.2017.1350584.


Radiofrequency radiations (RFRs) emitted by mobile phone base stations have raised concerns on its adverse impact on humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations. Therefore, the present study was envisaged to evaluate the effect of RFR on the DNA damage and antioxidant status in cultured human peripheral blood lymphocytes (HPBLs) of individuals residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations and comparing it with healthy controls.
The study groups matched for various demographic data including age, gender, dietary pattern, smoking habit, alcohol consumption, duration of mobile phone use and average daily mobile phone use.

The RF power density of the exposed individuals was significantly higher (p < 0.0001) when compared to the control group. The HPBLs were cultured and the DNA damage was assessed by cytokinesis blocked micronucleus (MN) assay in the binucleate lymphocytes. The analyses of data from the exposed group (n = 40), residing within a perimeter of 80 meters of mobile base stations, showed significantly (p < 0.0001) higher frequency of micronuclei (MN) when compared to the control group, residing 300 meters away from the mobile base station/s.

The analysis of various antioxidants in the plasma of exposed individuals revealed a significant attrition in glutathione (GSH) concentration (p < 0.01), activities of catalase (CAT) (p < 0.001) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) (p < 0.001) and rise in lipid peroxidation (LOO) when compared to controls. Multiple linear regression analyses revealed a significant association among reduced GSH concentration (p < 0.05), CAT (p < 0.001) and SOD (p < 0.001) activities and elevated MN frequency (p < 0.001) and LOO (p < 0.001) with increasing RF power density.

My note

All of the recorded RFR power density values in this study were well below the Federal Communication Commission’s maximum permissible exposure limits in the U.S. for the general population. These limits are are 6,000 mW/m2 [milliwatts per square meter] for 900 MHz and 10,000 mW/m2 for 1800 MHz radiofrequency radiation. In contrast, the highest recorded value in this study was 7.52 mW/m2 of RFR. The “exposed individuals” who resided within 80 meters of a cell antenna received an average of 5.00 mW/m2 of RFR in their bedrooms.


RFR may change the fidelity of DNA as the increased incidence of cancer has been reported among those residing near mobile phone base stations (Abdel-Rassonl et al., 2007; Bortkiewicz et al., 2004; Cherry, 2000; Eger et al., 2004; Hardell et al., 1999; Hutter et al., 2006; Wolf and Wolf, 2004). RFR emitted frommobile base stations is also reported to increase the DNA strand breaks in lymphocytes of mobile phone users and individuals residing in the vicinity of a mobile base station/s (Gandhi and Anita, 2005; Gandhi et al., 2014). Exposure of human fibroblasts and rat granulosa cells to RFR (1800 MHz, SAR 1.2 or 2 W/kg) has been reported to induce DNA single- and double-strands breaks (Diem et al., 2005). Irreversible DNA damage was also reported in cultured human lens epithelial cells exposed to microwave generated by mobile phones (Sun et al., 2006). The adverse health effects of RFR are still debatable as many studies indicated above have found a positive correlation between the DNA damage and RFR exposure; however, several studies reported no significant effect of RFR on DNA strand breaks and micronuclei formation in different study systems (Li et al., 2001; Tice et al., 2002; McNamee et al., 2003;Maes et al., 2006). The potential genotoxicity of RFR emitted by mobile phone base stations can be determined by micronucleus (MN) assay, which is an effective tool to evaluate the genotoxic or clastogenic effects of physical and chemical agents. This technique has also been used to quantify the frequencies of radiation-induced MN in human peripheral blood lymphocytes (HPBLs) (Fenech and Morley, 1985; Jagetia and Venkatesha, 2005; Prosser et al., 1988; Yildirim et al., 2010).

Six mobile phone base stations, operating in the frequency range of 900 MHz (N = 2) and1800MHz (N = 4), erected in the thickly populated areas of Aizawl city were selected for the present study… The power output of all the base stations is 20 W, with their primary beam emitting radiation at an angle of 20°. Power density measurements (using HF-60105V4, Germany) were carried out in the bedroom of each participant where they spent most of the time and hence have the longest constant level of electromagnetic field exposure. Power density measurement was carried out three times (morning, midday and evening), and the average was calculated for each residence around each base station. The main purpose of the measurement of power density was to ensure that RFR emission from each site did not exceed the safe public limits and to determine any difference in power density between selected households that were close to (within 80 m) and far (>300 m) from the mobile phone base stations. The safety limits for public exposure from mobile phone base stations are 0.45 W/m2 for 900 MHz and 0.92 W/m2 for 1800 MHz frequency as per Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications, Government of India, New Delhi guidelines (DoT, 2012).

… some residences are located horizontally with the top of the towers from which RFR are emitted, making it possible to get an exposure at a short distance of 1–20 m, despite being erected on the rooftop or in the ground. A minimum of two individuals were sampled from each household and at least five individuals were sampled around each mobile base station. Individuals sampled around each base station were matched for their age and gender (Table 1). The exposed group consisted of 40 healthy individuals who fulfilled the inclusion criteria of being above 18 years of age and residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations (within 80 m radius). The control group comprised of 40 healthy individuals matched for age and gender who had been living at least 300 m away from any mobile phone base stations…. Sampling was also done only from those residences who did not use microwave oven for cooking, Wifi devices and any other major source of electromagnetic field as they are known to cause adverse effects (Atasoy et al., 2013; Avendaño et al., 2012).

The groups matched for most of the demographic data such as age, gender, dietary pattern, smoking habit, alcohol consumption, mobile phone usage, duration of mobile phone use and average daily mobile phone use (Table 2). A highly significant variation (p < 0.0001) was observed for the distance of household from the base station (40.10 ± 3.02 vs. 403.17 ± 7.98 in m) between exposed and control groups.

The RF power density of the exposed group (2.80–7.52 mW/m2; average 5.002 ± 0.182 mW/ m2) was significantly higher (p < 0.0001) when compared to the control group (0.014–0.065 mW/m2; average 0.035 ± 0.002 mW/m2). The highest power density was recorded at a distance of 1–20 m (6.44 ± 0.31 mW/m2), which is significantly higher (p < 0.0001) than those at a distance of 21–40 m (4.79 ± 0.33), 41–60 m (4.48 ± 0.22) and 61–80 m (4.61 ± 0.10).

The highest measured power density was 7.52mW/m2. Most of the measured values close to base stations (Table 1) are higher than that of the safe limits recommended by Bioinitiative Report 2012 (0.5mW/m2), Salzburg resolution 2000 (1 mW/m2) and EU (STOA) 2001 (0.1 mW/m2). However, all the recorded values were well below the current ICNIRP safe level (4700 mW/m2) and the current Indian Standard (450 mW/m2).

The exact mechanism of action of RFR in micronuclei induction and reduced antioxidant status is not apparent. The possible putative mechanism of generation of DNA damage may be the production of endogenous free radicals due to continuous exposure. RFR has been reported to produce different free radicals earlier (Avci et al., 2009; Burlaka et al., 2013; Barcal et al., 2014; Kazemi et al., 2015). Cells possess a number of compensatory mechanisms to deal with ROS and its effects. Among these are the induction of antioxidant proteins such as GSH, SOD and CAT. Enzymatic antioxidant systems function by direct or sequential removal of ROS, thereby terminating their activities. An imbalance between the oxidative forces and antioxidant defense systems causes oxidative injury, which has been implicated in various diseases, such as cancer, neurological disorders, atherosclerosis, diabetes, liver cirrhosis, asthma, hypertension and ischemia (Andreadis et al., 2003; Comhair et al., 2005; Dhalla et al., 2000; Finkel and Holbrook, 2000; Kasparova et al., 2005; Sayre et al., 2001; Sohal et al., 2002). Because of the significant decrease in endogenous antioxidants and increased LOO among the exposed group, the extra burden of free radicals is unlikely to get neutralized, and these surplus ROS may react with important cellular macromolecules including DNA forming either DNA adducts or stand breaks, which may be later expressed as micronuclei once the cell decides to divide. The decline in the antioxidant status may be also due to the suppressed activity of Nrf2 transcription factor which is involved in maintaining the antioxidant status in the cells.

The present study has reported that [radiofrequency radiation] increased the frequency of [micronuclei] and [lipid peroxidation] and reduced [glutathione] contents, [catalase] and [superoxide dismutase] activities in the plasma of the exposed individuals. The induction of [micronuclei] may be due to the increase in free-radical production. The present study demonstrated that staying near the mobile base stations and continuous use of mobile phones damage the DNA, and it may have an adverse effect in the long run. The persistence of DNA unrepaired damage leads to genomic instability which may lead to several health disorders including the induction of cancer.


Biological effects from exposure to electromagnetic radiation emitted by
cell tower base stations and other antenna arrays

Levitt BB, Lai H. Biological effects from exposure to electromagnetic radiation emitted by cell tower base stations and other antenna arrays. Environmental Reviews.18: 369–395 (2010) doi:10.1139 /A10-018. 


The siting of cellular phone base stations and other cellular infrastructure such as roof-mounted antenna arrays, especially in residential neighborhoods, is a contentious subject in land-use regulation. Local resistance from nearby residents and landowners is often based on fears of adverse health effects despite reassurances from telecommunications service providers that international exposure standards will be followed. 

Both anecdotal reports and some epidemiology studies have found headaches, skin rashes, sleep disturbances, depression, decreased libido, increased rates of suicide, concentration problems, dizziness, memory changes, increased risk of cancer, tremors, and other neurophysiological effects in populations near base stations. 

The objective of this paper is to review the existing studies of people living or working near cellular infrastructure and other pertinent studies that could apply to long-term, low-level radiofrequency radiation (RFR) exposures. While specific epidemiological research in this area is sparse and contradictory, and such exposures are difficult to quantify given the increasing background levels of RFR from myriad personal consumer products, some research does exist to warrant caution in infrastructure siting. Further epidemiology research that takes total ambient RFR exposures into consideration is warranted. 

Symptoms reported today may be classic microwave sickness, first described in 1978. Nonionizing electromagnetic fields are among the fastest growing forms of environmental pollution. Some extrapolations can be made from research other than epidemiology regarding biological effects from exposures at levels far below current exposure guidelines.


[Note: As of July 9, 2017,, an industry website, reports 646,000 towers and 1.89 million cell antennas in the U.S.]

In lieu of building new cell towers, some municipalities are licensing public utility poles throughout urban areas for Wi-Fi antennas that allow wireless Internet access. These systems can require hundreds of antennas in close proximity to the population with some exposures at a lateral height where second- and third-story windows face antennas. Most of these systems are categorically excluded from regulation by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) or oversight by government agencies because they operate below a certain power density threshold. However, power density is not the only factor determining biological effects from radiofrequency radiation (RFR).

An aesthetic emphasis is often the only perceived control of a municipality, particularly in countries like America where there is an overriding federal preemption that precludes taking the “environmental effects” of RFR into consideration in cell tower siting as stipulated in Section 704 of The Telecommunications Act of 1996 (USFCC 1996). Citizen resistance, however, is most often based on health concerns regarding the safety of RFR exposures to those who live near the infrastructure. Many citizens, especially those who claim to be hypersensitive to electromagnetic fields, state they would rather know where the antennas are and that hiding them greatly complicates society’s ability to monitor for safety.

Industry representatives try to reassure communities that facilities are many orders of magnitude below what is allowed for exposure by standards-setting boards and studies bear that out (Cooper et al. 2006Henderson and Bangay 2006Bornkessel et al. 2007). These include standards by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) used throughout Europe, Canada, and elsewhere (ICNIRP 1998). The standards currently adopted by the U.S. FCC, which uses a two-tiered system of recommendations put out by the National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP) for civilian exposures (referred to as uncontrolled environments), and the International Electricians and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) for professional exposures (referred to as controlled environments) (U.S. FCC 1997). The U.S. may eventually adopt standards closer to ICNIRP. The current U.S. standards are more protective than ICNIRP’s in some frequency ranges so any harmonization toward the ICNIRP standards will make the U.S. limits more lenient.

All of the standards currently in place are based on RFRs ability to heat tissue, called thermal effects. A longstanding criticism, going back to the 1950s (Levitt 1995), is that such acute heating effects do not take potentially more subtle non-thermal effects into consideration. And based on the number of citizens who have tried to stop cell towers from being installed in their neighborhoods, laypeople in many countries do not find adherence to existing standards valid in addressing health concerns. Therefore, infrastructure siting does not have the confidence of the public (Levitt 1998).

The intensity of RFR decreases rapidly with the distance from the emitting source; therefore, exposure to RFR from transmission towers is often of low intensity depending on one’s proximity. But intensity is not the only factor. Living near a facility will involve long-duration exposures, sometimes for years, at many hours per day. People working at home or the infirm can experience low-level 24 h exposures. Nighttimes alone will create 8 hour continuous exposures. The current standards for both ICNIRP, IEEE and the NCRP (adopted by the U.S. FCC) are for whole-body exposures averaged over a short duration (minutes) and are based on results from short-term exposure studies, not for long-term, low-level exposures such as those experienced by people living or working near transmitting facilities. For such populations, these can be involuntary exposures, unlike cell phones where user choice is involved.

The U.S. FCC has issued guidelines for both power density and SARs. For power density, the U.S. guidelines are between 0.2–1.0 mW/cm2….

At 100–200 ft (about 30–60 meters) from a cell phone base station, a person can be exposed to a power density of 0.001 mW/cm2 (i.e., 1.0 μW/cm2)….

For the purposes of this paper, we will define low-intensity exposure to RFR of power density of 0.001 mW/cm

Many biological effects have been documented at very low intensities comparable to what the population experiences within 200 to 500 ft (60–150 m) of a cell tower, including effects that occurred in studies of cell cultures and animals after exposures to low-intensity RFR. Effects reported include: genetic, growth, and reproductive; increases in permeability of the blood–brain barrier; behavioral; molecular, cellular, and metabolic; and increases in cancer risk….

Ten years ago, there were only about a dozen studies reporting such low-intensity effects; currently, there are more than 60. This body of work cannot be ignored. These are important findings with implications for anyone living or working near a transmitting facility. However, again, most of the studies in the list are on short-term (minutes to hours) exposure to low-intensity RFR. Long-term exposure studies are sparse. In addition, we do not know if all of these reported effects occur in humans exposed to low-intensity RFR, or whether the reported effects are health hazards. Biological effects do not automatically mean adverse health effects, plus many biological effects are reversible. However, it is clear that low-intensity RFR is not biologically inert. Clearly, more needs to be learned before a presumption of safety can continue to be made regarding placement of antenna arrays near the population, as is the case today.

… The previously mentioned studies show that RFR can produce effects at much lower intensities after test animals are repeatedly exposed. This may have implications for people exposed to RFR from transmission towers for long periods of time.

The conclusion from this body of work is that effects of long-term exposure can be quite different from those of short-term exposure.
Since most studies with RFR are short-term exposure studies, it is not valid to use their results to set guidelines for long-term exposures, such as in populations living or working near cell phone base stations.
Numerous biological effects do occur after short-term exposures to low-intensity RFR but potential hazardous health effects from such exposures on humans are still not well established, despite increasing evidence as demonstrated throughout this paper. Unfortunately, not enough is known about biological effects from long-term exposures, especially as the effects of long-term exposure can be quite different from those of short-term exposure. It is the long-term, low-intensity exposures that are most common today and increasing significantly from myriad wireless products and services.
People are reporting symptoms near cell towers and in proximity to other RFR-generating sources including consumer products such as wireless computer routers and Wi-Fi systems that appear to be classic “microwave sickness syndrome,” also known as “radiofrequency radiation sickness.” First identified in the 1950s by Soviet medical researchers, symptoms included headache, fatigue, ocular dysfunction, dizziness, and sleep disorders. In Soviet medicine, clinical manifestations include dermographism, tumors, blood changes, reproductive and cardiovascular abnormalities, depression, irritability, and memory impairment, among others. The Soviet researchers noted that the syndrome is reversible in early stages but is considered lethal over time (Tolgskaya et al. 1973).

The present U.S. guidelines for RFR exposure are not up to date. The most recent IEEE and NCRP guidelines used by the U.S. FCC have not taken many pertinent recent studies into consideration because, they argue, the results of many of those studies have not been replicated and thus are not valid for standards setting. That is a specious argument. It implies that someone tried to replicate certain works but failed to do so, indicating the studies in question are unreliable. However, in most cases, no one has tried to exactly replicate the works at all.... In addition, effects of long-term exposure, modulation, and other propagation characteristics are not considered. Therefore, the current guidelines are questionable in protecting the public from possible harmful effects of RFR exposure and the U.S. FCC should take steps to update their regulations by taking all recent research into consideration without waiting for replication that may never come because of the scarcity of research funding. The ICNIRP standards are more lenient in key exposures to the population than current U.S. FCC regulations. The U.S. standards should not be “harmonized” toward more lenient allowances. The ICNIRP should become more protective instead. All standards should be biologically based, not dosimetry based as is the case today.
Exposure of the general population to RFR from wireless communication devices and transmission towers should be kept to a minimum and should follow the “As Low As Reasonably Achievable” (ALARA) principle. Some scientists, organizations, and local governments recommend very low exposure levels — so low, in fact, that many wireless industries claim they cannot function without many more antennas in a given area. However, a denser infrastructure may be impossible to attain because of citizen unwillingness to live in proximity to so many antennas. In general, the lowest regulatory standards currently in place aim to accomplish a maximum exposure of 0.02 V/m, equal to a power density of 0.0001 μW/cm2, which is in line with Salzburg, Austria’s indoor exposure value for GSM cell base stations. Other precautionary target levels aim for an outdoor cumulative exposure of 0.1 μW/cm2 for pulsed RF exposures where they affect the general population and an indoor exposure as low as 0.01 μW/cm2 (Sage and Carpenter 2009). In 2007, The BioInitiative Report, A rationale for a biologically based public exposure standard for electromagnetic fields (ELF and RF), also made this recommendation, based on the precautionary principle (Bioinitiative Report 2007).

Citizens and municipalities often ask for firm setbacks from towers to guarantee safety. There are many variables involved with safer tower siting — such as how many providers are co-located, at what frequencies they operate, the tower’s height, surrounding topographical characteristics, the presence of metal objects, and others. Hard and fast setbacks are difficult to recommend in all circumstances. Deployment of base stations should be kept as efficient as possible to avoid exposure of the public to unnecessary high levels of RFR. As a general guideline, cell base stations should not be located less than 1500 ft (500 m) from the population, and at a height of about 150 ft (50 m). Several of the papers previously cited indicate that symptoms lessen at that distance, despite the many variables involved. However, with new technologies now being added to cell towers such as Wi-Max networks, which add significantly more power density to the environment, setback recommendations can be a very unpredictable reassurance at best. New technology should be developed to reduce the energy required for effective wireless communication.

In addition, regular RFR monitoring of base stations should be considered….

Review Papers
Bhattacharya, R, Roy, R. Impacts of communication towers on avians: A review. IJECT. 4(1): 137- 139. 2013.

Chronic Exposure Web Site. Research on mobile base stations and their impact on health.

Levitt B, Lai H. Biological effects from exposure to electromagnetic radiation emitted by cell tower base stations and other antenna arrays. Environ. Rev. 18: 369–395 (2010). doi:10.1139/A10-018.
Manville, A. A Briefing Memorandum: What We Know, Can Infer, and Don’t Yet Know about Impacts from Thermal and Non-thermal Non-ionizing Radiation to Birds and Other Wildlife — for Public Release. July 14, 2016.

Sivani S, Sudarsanam D. Impacts of radio-frequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) from cell phone towers and wireless devices on biosystem and ecosystem--a review. Biology and Medicine. 2012. 4(4):202-216.

Yakymenko I, Sidorik E. Risks of carcinogenesis from electromagnetic radiation of mobile telephony devices. Exp Oncol. 2010 Jul;32(2):54-60.

Yakymenko I, Sidorik E, Kyrylenko S, Chekhun V. Long-term exposure to microwave radiation provokes cancer growth: evidences from radars and mobile communication systems. Exp Oncol. 2011 Jun;33(2):62-70.

Yakymenko I., Tsybulin O., Sidorik E. Henshel D., Krylenko O., Krylenko S. Oxidative mechanisms of biologic activity of low-intensity radiofrequency radiation. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. 2015 Jul 7:1-16. 

Recent Studies (Updated 12/5/2017)

Al-Quzwini O, Al-Taee H, Al-Shaikh S. Male fertility and its association with occupational and mobile phone towers hazards: An analytic study. Middle East Fertility Society Journal. Avail. online Apr 8, 2016.

Baliatsas C, van Kamp I, Bolte J, Kelfkens G, van Dijk C, Spreeuwenberg P, Hooiveld M, Lebret E, Yzermans J. Clinically defined non-specific symptoms in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations: A retrospective before-after study. Sci Total Environ. 2016 Sep 15;565:714-20

Bienkowski P, Zubrzak B. Electromagnetic fields from mobile phone base station - variability analysis. Electromagn Biol Med. 2015 Sep;34(3):257-61.

Black B, Granja-Vazquez R, Johnston BR, Jones E, Romero-Ortega M (2016) Anthropogenic Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Fields Elicit Neuropathic Pain in an Amputation Model. PLoS ONE 11(1): e0144268.

Cammaerts MC, Johansson O. Effect of man-made electromagnetic fields on common Brassicaceae Lepidium sativum (cress d’Alinois) seed germination: a preliminary replication study. Phyton, International Journal of Experimental Botany 2015; 84: 132-137.

Eskander EF, Estefan SF, Abd-Rabou AA. How does long term exposure to base stations and mobile phones affect human hormone profiles? Clinical Biochemistry, Volume 45, Issues 1–2. 2012, Pages 157-161.

Gandhi G, Kaur G, Nisar U. A cross-sectional case control study on genetic damage in individuals residing in the vicinity of a mobile phone base station. Electromagn Biol Med. 2014 9:1-11.

Gulati S, Yadav A, Kumar N, Kanupriya, Aggarwal NK, Kumar R, Gupta R. Effect of GSTM1 and GSTT1 Polymorphisms on Genetic Damage in Humans Populations Exposed to Radiation From Mobile Towers. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol. 2015 Aug 5.

Gulati S, Yadav A, Kumar N, Priya K, Aggarwal NK, Gupta R. Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of antioxidant enzyme system in human population exposed to radiation from mobile towers.Mol Cell Biochem. 2017 Aug 17.

Hardell L, Koppel T, Carlberg M, Ahonen M, Hedendahl L. Radiofrequency radiation at Stockholm Central Railway Station in Sweden and some medical aspects on public exposure to RF fields. International Journal of Oncology. Published online Aug 12, 2016. Open access:

Marinescu I, Poparlan C. Assessment of GSM HF-Radiation impact levels within the residential area of Craiova (Romania) city.  Procedia Environmental Sciences 32:177-183. 2016.

Martens AL, Slottje P, Timmermans DR, Kromhout H, Reedijk M, Vermeulen RC, Smid T. Modeled and Perceived Exposure to Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Fields From Mobile-Phone Base Stations and the Development of Symptoms Over Time in a General Population Cohort. Am J Epidemiol. 2017 Apr 7:1-10.

Meo SA, Alsubaie Y, Almubarak Z, Almutawa H, AlQasem Y, Hasanato RM. Association of Exposure to Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Field Radiation (RF-EMFR) Generated by Mobile Phone Base Stations with Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1c) and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2015 Nov 13;12(11):14519-14528.

Sagar S, Dongus S, Schoeni A, Roser K, Eeftens M, Struchen B, Foerster M, Meier N, Adem S, Röösli M. Radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure in everyday microenvironments in Europe: A systematic literature review. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2017 Aug 2.

Singh K, Nagaraj A, Yousuf A, Ganta S, Pareek S, Vishnani P. Effect of electromagnetic radiations from mobile phone base stations on general health and salivary function. J Int Soc Prevent Communit Dent 2016;6:54-9.

Waldmann-Selsam C, Balmori-de la Puente A, Breunig H, Balmori A. Radiofrequency radiation injures trees around mobile phone base stations. Sci Total Environ. 2016 Aug 20;572:554-569.

Zothansiama, Zosangzuali M, Lalramdinpuii M, Jagetia GC. Impact of radiofrequency radiation on DNA damage and antioxidants in peripheral blood lymphocytes of humans residing in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations. Electromagn Biol Med. 2017 Aug 4:1-11.


Campanelli & Associates, P.C. Cell tower lawyers.

Center for Municipal Solutions. Excellent resource re: regulation of cell towers & wireless

League of Minnesota Cities. Cell Towers, Small Cell Technologies & Distributed Antenna Systems. Nov 4, 2016.

San Francisco Neighborhood Antenna-Free Union (SNAFU)


RCR Wireless News. Appeals Court rules that California cities have the right to block small cell based on aesthetic concerns. Sep 16, 2016.

Rouhan Sharma. A Towering Problem. Infrastructure Today, Feb 2016.

Special Correspondent. "Radiation levels of mobile towers should be cut." The Hindu. Feb 7, 2016.
"Stating that the current level of radiation (electromagnetic field, EMF) emitted by mobile phone towers was still high, Girish Kumar, Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT Bombay, on Saturday, urged the Centre to reduce the radiation level further.
The mobile tower radiation had been reduced [in India] from 45,000 milliwatt per square metre to 450 milliwatt a few years ago. It should be reduced to 10 milliwatt, he said ...."
Note: The FCC allows the American general public to be exposed to up to 5,800 milliwatts per square meter.

Lydia Beyoud. Not All ‘Small Cells' Created Equal, Say Municipalities in Wireless Siting Rules Suit. Bloomberg BNA. Apr 27, 2015.
"... the number of small cell and DAS installations is expected to grow exponentially in the next few years. As many as 37 million small cell installations could be in place by 2017, and up to 16 million distributed antenna system (DAS) nodes could be deployed by 2018, according to the FCC."

Joel Moskowitz. Press Release: Cell Tower Radiation Affects Wildlife: Dept. of Interior Attacks FCC. Mar 2014. 
Ianthe Jeanne Dugan and Ryan Knutson. Cellphone Boom Spurs Antenna-Safety Worries. Wall Street Journal, Oct 2, 2014.