(CNN) -- San Francisco, California, likely will become the first U.S. city to require cell phone companies to disclose how much radiation their gadgets emit.
The city's board of supervisors voted 10-1 on Tuesday in favor of a law that would require handset makers to post in stores how much wireless radiation their phones give off, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Mayor Gavin Newsom is expected to sign the measure into law.
The city says consumers can use the information to differentiate between cell phones that emit relatively low and high levels of radiation.
Some researchers link those emissions to cancer and brain tumors, although there is no scientific consensus on the matter.
The New York Times compared San Francisco's mobile phone law to those that require food makers to reveal trans fat levels.
"It's information that's out there if you're willing to look hard enough," Tony Winnicker, a spokesman for the mayor, told the Times. "And we think that for the consumer for whom this is an area of concern, it ought to be easier to find."
The mobile phone industry opposes the new law, saying that science has shown cell phone radiation is not harmful to people.
"Rather than inform, the ordinance will potentially mislead consumers with point-of-sale requirements suggesting that some phones are 'safer' than others, based on radio frequency emissions," John Walls, a spokesman for the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA), told The Chronicle.
A landmark study on the potential health effects of cell phone radiation found no conclusive evidence that the emissions are harmful or that they are safe.
The U.S. Federal Communications Commission says cell phones must not have a "specific absorption rate" of more than 1.6 watts per kilogram. That's a measure of "the amount of radio frequency energy absorbed by the body when using a mobile phone," according to the FCC.
Information about radio frequency emissions from cell phones already is available online. The San Francisco law would put that information in front of customers in stores and would require mobile phone retailers to provide additional safety-related information to consumers.
|Find this article at: http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/mobile/06/16/san.francisco.cell.radiation/index.html|
A review of the recent inconclusive report on call phones and brain cancer lead an investigator to re-review the studies.
Mobile phone users 'five times more likely to develop a brain tumour'By Fiona Macrae
People who talk on mobile phones are up to five times more likely to develop brain tumours than those who stick to landlines, academics have warned.Lead researcher Lloyd Morgan said there could be a 'brain tumour pandemic' unless people changed their patterns of mobile phone use.This would include texting rather than holding the phone to the ear.
They say a number of previous studies into mobile phone safety 'substantially underestimated' the cancer risks and that tumours are much more common on the side of the head to which the mobile is held than on the other side.
After reanalysing the earlier studies they concluded that the risk of these tumours is between 10 and 500 per cent higher with long-term mobile phone use.
Lead researcher Lloyd Morgan warned yesterday that the findings raised the possibility of 'a brain tumour pandemic' unless people change their pattern of mobile phone use.
Mr Morgan, of the Environmental Health Trust, a U.S. campaign group, spoke out after re-examining the figures from six previous studies.
These included a Swedish one which originally concluded that people who used mobile phones for at least ten years were 3.9 times more likely to develop an acoustic neuinroma - a non-cancerous tumour - on a nerve near the ear to which they held their phone compared to those who rarely or never used the devices.
The reanalysis, designed to take into account flaws in the design of the study which could have skewed the results, put the increased risk at 4.9 times.
Another study had concluded that ten years of mobile phone use raised the odds of 'same side' gliomas - aggressive brain tumours - by 60 per cent.
But if the new technique is applied, the risk is raised by 100 per cent, a scientific conference in Seoul, South Korea, will hear today.
Reanalysis of a third study concluded that every 100 hours of mobile phone use raises the odds of meningioma, another common brain cancer, by 24 per cent.
The results of some of these studies were included in the world's largest study on mobile phone safety.
Released to much fanfare in May, the Interphone project concluded that ten or more years of mobile phone use raised the risk of a glioma appearing on the side of the head to which the phone is held by 21 per cent.
The British scientists involved in the study said the figures were flawed and urged people not to worry.
They pointed out that some of those who took part claimed to have used their mobiles for more than 12 hours a day ten years ago - something which was 'incredibly implausible'.
In addition, brain growths can affect memory, meaning some of those with tumours may have over-estimated how much they had used their phone.
Mr Morgan's team crunched the same figures but tried to factor in the effect of various design flaws.
This showed the increased odds of 'same side' gliomas to be 51 per cent - more than twice as high as estimated in the May study.
However, British cancer experts said predictions of a 'brain tumour pandemic' were overblown. Ed Yong, of Cancer Research UK, said: 'Even after the minor adjustments reported in this new analysis, the results from the overall Interphone study are still either not statistically significant, or right on the borderline.'
John Cooke, of the Mobile Operators Association, which represents the industry, said a World Health Organisation fact sheet last month stated that 'to date, no adverse health effects have been established for mobile phone use'.
Natural Health News has over 100 posts related to cell phone health risk issues.
As first posted: Real EMF Danger: Your Brain on a Cell PhoneAs this technology becomes more and more pervasive I believe it is important for you to get the facts the government, media, and cellular companies are withholding !
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