WHO and ICNIRP Closed Clubs ?

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WHO and ICNIRP Closed Clubs ?

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Interesting article on how organizations charged with protection of public health have been taken over by the wireless industry (just like our FCC).




Dear Readers, 

In this installment of our newsletter we have used ORSAA’s database to extend the work of both Starkey1 and Hardell2 who have looked at the EHC core group and their memberships/associations. What clearly stands out is the WHO Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) Group appears to be biased and ICNIRP is a closed club.

1Dr Starkey’s paper entitled: “Inaccurate official assessment of radiofrequency safety by the Advisory Group on Non-ionising Radiation” is available from here https://www.degruyter.com/downloadpdf/j/reveh.2016.31.issue-4/reveh-2016-0060/reveh-2016-0060.pdf

2Professor Lennart Hardell’s latest paper entitled “World Health Organization, radiofrequency radiation and health - a hard nut to crack (Review)“ can be found here https://www.spandidos-publications.com/10.3892/ijo.2017.4046

 

ORSAA has carefully looked at a number of attributes for each EHC “expert” as shown in the attached pdf and we have to say we find the linkages are very troubling. 


Country EHC group are primarily based or funded from – this is important to understand whether we have a good representation of countries with varying RF Safety Standards. What we have found is that the researchers represent countries that have in most cases adopted ICNIRP Guidelines which are the least protective when compared to what is available around the world. There is no representation from countries that have more stricter scientific based RF Standards like countries from Eastern Europe, Russia, China or India. Even countries that have a precautionary based RF standard, such as Austria, do not have any representation in the EHC expert group. This suggests the WHO has employed biased selection criteria when establishing the EHC group.

Tables below show the breakdown of effect and no effect findings for a number of countries.


 Leading EMF Effect Countries

Country

Effect Papers

No Effect Papers

CHINA

141

13

TURKEY

131

22

USA

103

61

INDIA

80

5

SWEDEN

66

13

IRAN

50

4

RUSSIA

40

2

 

Leading No Effect Countries

Country

Effect Papers

No Effect Papers

USA

103

61

DEU

38

51

JPN

33

44

ITA

61

35

FRA

41

35

GBR

22

34

KOR

26

25

AUS

36

23

FIN

20

23

  • A number of countries finding a large number of “no effects” have corporations significantly investing in wireless technology (i.e. Siemens, Samsung, Nokia, Sony, Motorola … etc.)
  • ICNIRP was founded in Germany (DEU) and receives funding from the German Federal Ministry for the environment. Germany is one of the few countries finding more “no effects” than effects
  • Many countries that are finding a significantly higher proportion of effects also typically have the most protective RF exposure limits (excluding USA)

Another view of how funding source can potentially impact research finding outcomes is presented in the pie charts below:


It should be noted that government communications agencies make significant amounts of money from the sale of spectrum licences and may explain why outcomes are biased towards “No Effect”. Caution needs to be applied when trying to interpret “Government Only” funding as it clearly depends on which countries we focus on as indicated in the tables above. China has a significant contribution to the number of papers showing “Effect” and are predominantly Government sponsored. A future newsletter will look at military funding (USAF, US Navy etc.) influence on research outcomes.

 

Below are the descriptions and purpose of key headline fields provided in the attached pdf document.

Research Findings “Effect” vs “No Effect” – To identify any potential personal biases particularly when used in conjunction with funding sources.


Co Authors – To identify relationships between EHC ”experts” and/or other scientists with similar opinions, associations (ICNIRP, AGNIR, SCENIHR etc.) as well as industry relationships.


Research Focus – to identify primary areas of research covered by EHC “experts” to see if there are any gaps. Are all bio-effects covered?


Study Funding – to identify primary sources of funding to see if there are potential conflicts of interest.

Qualifications – to understand the qualifications of the researchers and to determine whether there are potential gaps

 

Synopsis

What we have invariably found is a complex web of intrigue where there appears to be a large number of "No Effect" scientists with industry connections performing a review on RF and potential health effects for the WHO.

Main Issues that we see are as follows:

  • EHC expert panel composition appears to be over represented by "No Effect" scientists - particularly in the core group. A small number of token “Effect” researchers are included in the mix.
  • There is a clear lack of representation from countries that are finding significant amount of effects vs no effects, which is very concerning particularly when the majority have adopted RF standards that are significantly lower (90 – 100 times or lower) than those advised by ICNIRP - China, Russia, Turkey, India and Iran.
  • Many of the chosen EHC representatives have research relationships directly or indirectly with ICNIRP chair (van Rongen) or vice chair (Feychting)
  • A number of experts, including the core group, are potentially conflicted and are members of ICNIRP. ICNIRP is an NGO with no public accountability and promotes one of the least protective scientific guidelines around the world, does not recognise non-thermal effects or their potential for harm. 
  • Some key scientists represent countries who have a distorted balance of evidence in favour of “no effects” (e.g. GBR, DEU, FIN)
  • Nearly all members of the group have performed research (“no effect” studies) sponsored directly by military and/or Industry i.e. US Airforce, Electrical Power consortiums (such as EPRI) and Telecommunications companies like Motorola, Nokia, French Telecom, Telecom Italia Mobile etc. as well as industry groups or associations (GSM Association, Mobile Manufacturers Forum, Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association etc.).
  • Firewalls set up by organisations (MTHR, TEKE) are not failsafe as scientists know where funding comes from, recognise what happens to careers of those who make unwanted findings and go public. Some researchers are also known to have close associations with industry representatives
  • There are gaps in specialist expertise and research experience and so it is questionable whether they will be able to correctly interpret all potential health effects associated with bio-effects being found in RF scientific literature
  • Some of the researchers in the EHC group are known to cherry pick their data to support their "no evidence" or "no association" conclusions - particularly in relation to mobile usage and brain tumour studies
  • A number of the same "no effect" scientists appear to have been involved in multiple review panels and expert advisory committees over the last 10 years (ICNIRP, AGNIR, SCENIHR, SSI etc.)
  • Composition of EHC is not representative of the diverse opinions held in the scientific community and suggests expert selection bias by WHO

  • With respect to the EHC Group. I guess we can say “ On a path already travelled one can see sign-posts to the future"
 

 

This leads us to ask the following questions:


QUESTION :  Who is really running the EHC review program WHO or ICNIRP?


QUESTION :  Who in the list (particularly in core group) has specialist experience in epigenetics, endocrinology, neurology or cardiology?

 

Warmest Regards

Vic Leach 

ORSAA secretary

 

 




Bias in the WHO EHC Group_V1.pdf (602K) Download Attachment
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Re: WHO and ICNIRP Closed Clubs ?

Miller
All of these numbers make sense. Even if you split the effect numbers in the middle of industry and non-industry, they are still very high. Of course, I would side with non-industry since they have less at stake.
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