The mayor of an Italian town has ordered the WiFi be turned off in two of its schools due to heath fears. As reported by La Stampa:
“We are not opposed to technology – says the mayor (Livio Tola). Ours is a choice based on the precautionary principle.” He adds: “We are not able to say for sure whether electromagnetic waves are harmful or not, we read a lot about it on the web and we know that some municipalities have already adopted this measure.” When in doubt, therefore, best to turn off the signal. “And who knows, in 20 years, someone does not thank us.”
The claims of ill effects caused by WiFi are scientifically unfounded. WiFi occupies the same part of the spectrum as microwaves, not to mention the cosmic background radiation which exists everywhere. We are bathed in energy rays (radiation) of all types, yet the fear of one specific type of device – WiFi, a relatively low-emitting source of microwaves – is deemed a health hazard to children.
Is there really anything to fear from WiFi exposure to children? As described by Marc Leger over at the Atoms and Numbers blog:
“There is some fear associated with the microwave radiation used for WiFi, but let us recognize that microwave transmission has been in use in Canada for many decades. The Trans-Canada Microwave was built in the 1950s to transmit radio and television signals from coast to coast, before the era of satellite dishes. 139 towers spanned the country, using similar-frequency radiation to what is used by WiFi today. They are used for transmitting live programming and telephone calls from one coast to the other. These systems were used by television networks and telephone networks well into the 1980s, when fiber optic cables became commonplace. If there are any concerns about the long-term effects of exposure to microwave radiation, we can check with people who lived near these towers for many decades. In fact, there is no evidence of any ill health coming from exposure to these microwaves.
With the lack of any evidence of short-term to medium-term health concerns stemming from WiFi radiation, and with no viable mechanism to explain how it could harm the body, parents should be reassured that their children will not be affected by this technology.”
Somehow, the mayors, principals, board members, and other people around the world making decisions to pull the WiFi in their schools fail to find the studies and reviews which show no ill effects in children, or adults, as a result of exposure to WiFi emitting electronic devices.