SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1462        FILED ON: 1/20/2017

Resolve creating a special commission to examine the health impacts of electromagnetic fields.

            Resolved, There shall be a special commission on the health impacts of electromagnetic fields on the citizens of the Commonwealth. The commission shall be comprised of the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on public health as well as the ranking house and senate minority members on the committee; the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on telecommunication, utilities and energy and the ranking house and senate minority members; the commissioner of the department of public health or a designee; a scientist who is a specialist in environmental medicine and is knowledgeable about the health effects of electromagnetic fields who shall be appointed by the governor; a pediatrician who shall be appointed by the governor; three specialists in public health or environmental medicine, one each who shall be appointed by the governor, the senate president and the speaker of the house; a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society who is a specialist in environmental medicine who shall serve as chair; a member of the Massachusetts Board of Education; and a member of a Massachusetts school board or committee. No appointee shall have a financial interest in the telecommunications, technology, utility and energy industries.

            The commission shall examine non-industry funded science for all facets of health impacts of electromagnetic fields from all sources, including but not limited to the use of cellular devices, utility smart meters, Wi-Fi, and the use of Wi-Fi in public facilities, including but not limited to public schools. The commission shall include in its report an investigation of the health impacts of electromagnetic fields, including but not limited to the effects on reproductive systems, brain function including memory loss, diminished learning, performance impairment in children, headaches and neurodegenerative conditions, melatonin suppression and sleep disorders, fatigue, hormonal imbalances, immune dysregulation such as allergic and inflammatory responses, cardiac and blood pressure problems, genotoxic effects like miscarriage, cancers such as childhood leukemia, and childhood and adult brain tumors.  The commission shall study whether electromagnetic radiation exposure may have a disparate impact on potentially vulnerable subgroups including children, fetuses, pregnant women, the elderly and those with preexisting illnesses or impairments. The commission shall investigate whether children are more vulnerable to electromagnetic radiation due to their developing nervous systems or other physical characteristics.

            The commission shall convene no later than 60 days following the enactment of this resolve. The commission shall file a report with the clerks of the house and senate no later than July 31, 2018. The commission shall make any necessary recommendations to the General Court on legislation designed to protect the health of the citizens of the Commonwealth including a recommendation on whether, within public schools, children’s exposure to electromagnetic fields, including those from Wi-Fi, should be eliminated or reduced. The commission may also make recommendations on any other matter that may come before the commission that will enhance the protection of the public health.

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The FCC and industry are fast-tracking legislation that would take authority away from our municipalities in deciding whether or not we want the infrastructure needed for 5G and the Internet of Things. They did this back in 1997 too when they circumvented safety testing on cell phone technology then got the Telecommunications Act passed. That left our local authorities powerless as the industry put cell towers near homes, schools, hospitals, churches and senior housing. Many have become very ill, with no recourse.
Now the FCC and industry are trying to push through two bills in D.C. that will put small but extremely hazardous cell antennas in our neighborhoods on utility poles right outside our homes, schools, offices, everywhere. The 5G signal will carry huge doses of data faster, but not very far so the industry wants to install millions of these small cell antennas to carry the data from pole to pole. 5G will also use 3G and 4G technology so existing towers won’t come down; 5G will add to the electrosmog. These small cell antennas will pulse biologically hazardous microwave radiation at us 24/7 at close range.
The way the Telecom Act is written today, industry is supposed to submit an application to town officials to put in antennas, and these new bills are trying to override this control measure for local authorities. Why is the FCC and industry in such a rush? The U.S. National Toxicology Program is in the middle of reporting out findings from a $25M multi-year study that has already found this radiation causes DNA damage, brain and heart tumors. More findings will come out in 2017.

The industry leaders are not concerned with public health, they just want to be first to market. As soon as the NTP findings came out, they pushed to get approval to use the 5G spectrum. The Cellular Telephone Industry Association (CTIA-The Wireless Association) did its own big cancer study in the 1990s which showed the same findings, but they didn’t inform the public. Instead, they crafted the Telecom Act and pushed cell phones and infrastructure on an unsuspecting public. Then they introduced wi-fi which exposes us even further indoors, and now they plan to roll out the Internet of Things and blanket our neighborhoods in radiation.

Please, don’t take my word on all of this, when you have time I encourage you to investigate on your own (thank you, Katie Singer, author of Invisible Silent Spring, and others for this great resource on these two bills, and thank you world scientists for the EMF Scientists website which presents the facts on wireless radiation).

The House deadline for co-sponsors to sign on to this session’s smart meter opt out bill, SD344, is next Friday, February 3rd. Senators have more time to sign on, but all legislators are currently deep in the process of deciding which bills to co-sponsor, so now is the time to make contact. As of Thursday, January 26, Representative Diana DiZoglio and Representative David Linsky had officially signed on as co-sponsors. (For those of you who may be reading about the bill for the first time, the new bill, if passed, will assure the right to choose what type of utility meter will be installed and operated on one’s home or place of business, and to do so without incurring any fees. The text of the bill can be found here: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/190/SD344 .)

If you have already contacted your Representative and your Senator, now is the time when a follow up email, or a phone call together with a follow-up email, can make a difference. We have been told that legislative aides print out all email requests for co-sponsorship and gather them into a great pile for their Representative or Senator to review. (My own Representative reportedly has around 6000 bills to review!) An email can be fairly brief. (e.g., Dear Senator/ Representative, I hope you will sign on as a co-sponsor of SD344, the smart meter opt out bill. Wireless utility meters raise concerns about security, privacy, and health which are not being properly addressed. All Massachusetts ratepayers should have the right to choose what type of utility meters they will have and to do so without paying any fees.) If you have more time, you are welcome to send a one-page introduction to the subject, complete with references. But please consider sending something to be printed out and physically placed in front of the legislator. Legislators can send requests to be co-sponsors of the new bill, SD344, through the online system LAWS.

 

We’ve been told over and over that the AMR meter does not send out except when the truck with the receiver drives by. Well, I quote from Itron’s (the manufacturer) FAQs about its power output level: “The Itron ERT operates under FCC Part 15.249 rules. The ERT transmission frequency operates between 910-920 MHz and is spread spectrum, frequency hopping. The power output level is .75 milliwatts, the maximum allowed by the FCC. The transmission of the ERT message occurs every 1 to 2 seconds and the duration of each transmitted message is 5.86 milliseconds.”

So – we know the FCC rules do not take into consideration health effects. And, if what they say is correct, the frequency emissions are continuous and at the maximum allowed. Are these harmful? I’ll let you decide.

Here is the update on the Attorney General’s response, essentially recommending that the program be extended only until April 2017 (4 months) at $700,000 with a cost cap to minimize confusion over multiple rates changes.  ($700,000 still seems like a lot of money to me)

http://web1.env.state.ma.us/DPU/FileRoomAPI/api/Attachments/Get/?path=16-149%2fAGO_Opposition_102716.pdf

PAGE 1; On September 27, 2016, the Department issued a Notice of Filing and Public Hearing and Procedural Conference. On October 20, 2016, the Department held a public hearing and procedural conference. A final procedural schedule has not yet been established for this proceeding. Since the Company’s filing of its Petition, the Attorney General’s Office (“AGO”), has issued one set of discovery questions. Additionally, the Department has received 17 sets of comments from interested parties, all of which oppose the extension of the Pilot due to concerns regarding cost overruns during the initial Pilot term and the health effects of the Pilot.
PAGE 2 According to the Company, if the Pilot and Smart Pricing rates end on December 31, 2016, customers will have to be switched back to standard Basic Service rates, and if the Smart Pricing rates are thereafter extended, customers will be placed back on Smart Pricing. Motion, p. 1. The Company states that multiple rate switches within a short timeframe are likely to cause customer dissatisfaction and confusion. Motion, pp. 1-2. The Department should deny the Motion, as proposed, because the Company has already far exceeded its Pilot budget as approved in D.P.U. 11-129. 
The AGO does not object to extending the Company’s Smart Pricing rates on an interim basis to help minimize customer confusion. 2 However, given that there has been no opportunity to fully review the Company’s proposed Pilot extension, certain safeguards must be put in place to contain Company spending. Specifically, the Department should establish a set end date for the interim extension and a set a cost cap on the additional program costs incurred during the interim extension period. Moreover, to the extent the Department decides to allow interim approval, it should do so only for the Company’s Basic Service Tariff, M.D.P.U. No. 1296.
PAGE 4 In the Company’s latest Pilot cost recovery docket, D.P.U. 16-28, the Company recognized this budget and stated that its current forecast, including operation and maintenance (“O&M”), capital and cost of removal is $60,393,000. Massachusetts Electric Company and Nantucket Electric Company, each d/b/a National Grid, D.P.U. 16-28, Exh. AG-1-13. This amount is $14,593,000, or 31.9% above the Department-approved budget amount. Department approval of an interim extension of the Pilot as proposed, with no cost control measures incorporated, may result in additional cost overruns to be borne by the Company’s ratepayers. The Company has not provided any information, either in its Motion for interim approval or in its Pilot extension proposal generally, regarding its ability to control costs. In light of the fact that the Company has already far exceeded the original Pilot budget, the Company should only be allowed to continue the Pilot on an interim basis if the Department imposes some cost control measures. 
PAGE 5 In order to limit the costs associated with an interim extension of the Pilot, while still allowing sufficient time for a full adjudicatory proceeding in this matter, the AGO proposes that a set end date be established for the Company’s interim extension. The Company is requesting approval of a revised Tariff for Basic Service, M.D.P.U. No. 1296 (replacing M.D.P.U. No. 1250), in this docket in order to continue its Smart Pricing as set forth in Section 8 of its current Tariff for Basic Service.4 Given that the Company’s next Basic Service rates will go into effect on May 1, 2017, April 30, 2017 is a logical end date.5 A four-month extension is more than sufficient ameliorate customer confusion concerns while the issues in D.P.U. 16-149 are fully reviewed and the Department issues its final order.

 

PAGE 6 In order to further control additional cost overruns associated with the Pilot, the AGO strongly urges the Department to place a cost cap on the costs that may be incurred during any interim extension period. The Company’s estimated budget for its two-year Pilot extension, representing the estimated O&M post Pilot expenses, is $2,035,000 per year. Exh. WFJ-2. As stated above, the AGO does not oppose a limited, four-month interim extension of the Pilot, which would represent roughly one third of a year. Given this timeframe for an interim extension, a reasonable cost cap could be calculated by taking the Company’s proposed $2,035,000 annual budget for the Pilot and multiplying that by one third. This would result in an approximate rounded four-month budget of $700,000. As noted above, the Company has already greatly exceeded its Department-approved budget for the original Pilot. In order to prevent further overruns of the Company’s original Pilot budget, the AGO proposes a cost cap on costs incurred during any approved interim Pilot extension of $700,000.

This is reprinted from our S.A.F.E. Helps You website for education about electrosensitivity. People who can’t tolerate the frequencies from electromagnetic fields including those emitted from smart meters can experience symptoms. This is one woman explaining what she goes through.

“But what does it feel like?” This is the most popular question I’ve been asked in the last three years. In a nutshell — it feels like unremitting, wired, electrified torture. It feels like I am fused with a force field, that I’m no longer human but part of a circuit. It feels like my body is pulsating to an artificial frequency. If I were to check off some boxes in a physician’s waiting room, my symptom list would include numbness, tingling, muscle twitching, vertigo, loss of balance, pressurized headaches, spinal pain, rashes, insomnia, memory lapses, cognitive dysfunction, altered heart rate, tinnitus, fatigue, gastrointestinal distress and urological spasms — just for starters.
My symptoms worsen to torment based on dose and duration of EMF intensity, and diminish only with distance from the offending source. Which means, if there’s something energetically hurting me, there’s no waiting it out, there’s no “maybe I’ll get used to it,” there’s no “Alison, can’t you just deal with it?” And if I can’t shut it down, there is only one thing to do:
Leave.”
written by Alison Main,  a freelance graphic designer and writer with a focus on environmental health, EMF safety and natural living. You can read her nonfiction essays at uncommonalchemy.me and her published work atalisonmain.me.

On Saturday, September 10, at 7 pm, the Woodstock Smart Meter Forum will launch its fall series. The first speaker of the season will be Dafna Tachover, founder and CEO of We Are the Evidence. She will discuss the environmental and health impacts of the 5G Spectrum Frontiers standards for cell phones and smart meters. The 5G protocol will create the technological framework for the Internet of Things.

The FCC decision will facilitate implementation of the 5G platform in 2017, and it will be intensely infrastructure rich. For example, in the case of cell phones, the new standard calls for mini-cell towers on every telephone pole and on/in houses to support signal saturation. This is necessary since the signal cannot travel through walls. The program is designed to enable billions of microchipped appliances to seamlessly communicate—and it will spread unprecedented amounts of radiation through the environment and peoples’ homes.

Dafna Tachover’s We Are the Evidence is an advocacy group for the protection of the rights of those injured by wireless radiation. Ms. Tachover herself developed electro sensitivity (ES) in 2009. She is licensed to practice law in New York State and Israel and she has an MBA. Further, she has a technical background, which dates from her service in the Israeli Army. There she was a communications and computers officer and commander of the computer center of the Israeli Defense Force Operations Center and Headquarters.

The Woodstock Smart Meter Forum is free and open to the public. The presentation will take place at the Woodstock Public Library, 5 Library Lane in Woodstock, NY.