ICNIRP’s wireless radiation exposure limits are based on smoke and mirrors

September 11, 2022

A new peer-reviewed paper published in the journal, Reviews of Environmental Healthfound that the International Commission for Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) bases its recommended exposure limits for wireless (i.e., radio frequency [RF]) radiation primarily on research produced by its own members, their former students and close colleagues. 

ICNIRP claims that their “thermal-only paradigm” “is consistent with current scientific understanding” despite the fact that the predominance of peer-reviewed research finds non-thermal effects.

The ICNIRP limits, designed to protect humans only from the acute effects of heating induced by RF radiation, are promoted by the World Health Organization and are similar to those adopted by the FCC.

In 2019 investigative journalists from eight European countries published 22 articles in major newspapers and magazines which exposed conflicts of interest in this “ICNIRP cartel.” More recently, the former editor of the journal of the Bioelectromagnetics Society accused ICNIRP of “groupthink.” For more information see the article below: “The ‘ICNIRP Cartel’ and ‘The 5G Mass Experiment'” (posted February 12, 2019, updated January 9, 2020).

Is ICNIRP a modern-day Wizard of Oz? In this new paper, Else Nordhagen and Einar Flydal pull back the curtain revealing the Wizard to be a fraud, all smoke and mirrors. They conclude:

“the ICNIRP 2020 Guidelines fail to meet fundamental scientific quality requirements and are therefore not suited as the basis on which to set RF EMF exposure limits for the protection of human health. With its thermal-only view, ICNIRP contrasts with the majority of research findings, and would therefore need a particularly solid scientific foundation. Our analysis demonstrates the contrary to be the case. Hence, the ICNIRP 2020 Guidelines cannot offer a basis for good governance.”

Self-referencing authorships behind the ICNIRP 2020 radiation protection guidelines

Else K Nordhagen, Einar Flydal. Self-referencing authorships behind the ICNIRP 2020 radiation protection guidelines. Rev Environ Health. 2022 Jun 27. doi: 10.1515/reveh-2022-0037.


In March 2020, ICNIRP (the International Commission for Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection) published a set of guidelines for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields (100 kHz to 300 GHz). ICNIRP claims this publication’s view on EMF and health, a view usually termed “the thermal-only paradigm”, is consistent with current scientific understanding. 

We investigated the literature referenced in ICNIRP 2020 to assess if the variation in authors and research groups behind it meets the fundamental requirement of constituting a broad scientific base and thus a view consistent with current scientific understanding, a requirement that such an important set of guidelines is expected to satisfy. To assess if this requirement has been met, we investigated the span of authors and research groups of the referenced literature of the ICNIRP 2020 Guidelines and annexes. 

Our analysis shows that ICNIRP 2020 itself, and in practice all its referenced supporting literature stem from a network of co-authors with just 17 researchers at its core, most of them affiliated with ICNIRP and/or the IEEE, and some of them being ICNIRP 2020 authors themselves. Moreover, literature reviews presented by ICNIRP 2020 as being from independent committees, are in fact products of this same informal network of collaborating authors, all committees having ICNIRP 2020 authors as members. 

This shows that the ICNIRP 2020 Guidelines fail to meet fundamental scientific quality requirements and are therefore not suited as the basis on which to set RF EMF exposure limits for the protection of human health. With its thermal-only view, ICNIRP contrasts with the majority of research findings, and would therefore need a particularly solid scientific foundation. Our analysis demonstrates the contrary to be the case. Hence, the ICNIRP 2020 Guidelines cannot offer a basis for good governance.


… ICNIRP members are found to have conflicts of interest, as pointed out by e.g., [3]: “the Ethical Board at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden concluded already in 2008 that being a member of ICNIRP may be a conflict of interest that should be stated officially whenever a member from ICNIRP makes opinions on health risks from EMF (Karolinska Institute diary number: 3753-2008-609)”. An EU report [4] concluded in June 2020 that “for really independent scientific advice we cannot rely on ICNIRP”….

As is apparent from the debate on this issue, a majority of peer-reviewed papers support the opposing view, i.e., that sub-thermal RF EMFs have health effects [5]. Several athermal mechanisms have been identified [6], [7], [8], [9], [10] and accepted as evidenced, if not proven….

All in all, ICNIRP 2020 has 158 unique references. Not all have been authored by the ICNIRP co-authorship network found in Pattern 1. We found that the network co-authored 78 of the referenced peer reviewed papers, seven of the literature reviews, and six ICNIRP publications, in total 91 documents. In addition to these 91 documents, there are 67 references to other documents.

Of these 67 documents, only 15 are peer reviewed papers on RF EMF and health. The remaining 52 are documents with no direct relation to this topic. We termed these 52 “technical documents”, as they address topics such as WHO’s definition of “health” and other general terms used (three documents), thermal regulation (20 documents), contact currents and pain (five documents), technical documentation (three documents) and SAR-modelling and calculations (21 documents). We excluded these technical documents from further analyses (see Figure 1) .


In the introduction we raised five questions relating to the authorship behind the referenced literature used to underpin the ICNIRP 2020 thermal-only view. Below we repeat the patterns found, answering these questions whilst adding some overarching conclusions.

  1.  Pattern 1: ICNIRP affiliates and ICNIRP 2020 authors are heavily involved in literature referenced in ICNIRP 2020 to underpin it. Figure 2 shows the graph of the complete network of co-authorship relations found in the referenced literature in ICNIRP 2020 originating from the ICNIRP affiliates, displaying that ICNIRP affiliates are the most central nodes of the network, and seven of the most central nodes being ICNIRP 2020 authors.Pattern 4: a small and tight network of just 17 authors is behind all the literature used to underpin ICNIRP 2020. Of these 17, 10 were ICNIRP affiliates, of whom six were also authors of ICNIRP 2020. Five of these 17 were IEEE C95.1 2019 authors, two of whom were also ICNIRP 2020 authors.
  2.  Pattern 2: ICNIRP 2020 authors are involved in all the literature reviews referenced in ICNIRP 2020 to underpin it. In addition to the ICNIRP 2020 authors, these committees are manned by several other ICNIRP affiliates.
  3.  Pattern 3: All scientific papers used to underpin ICNIRP 2020 are from the same co-author network centered around ICNIRP affiliates.Only four papers were found to be used to underpin ICNIRP 2020 that were not linked to the ICNIRP co-authorship network. Of these four, a simple internet search revealed that two of them have authors who have co-authored several papers with ICNIRP affiliates and thus cannot be seen as independent from ICNIRP. The two last were misinterpreted to underpin ICNIRP 2020 or offered no scientifically sound support.
  4.  Pattern 5: The spread of first authors gives a false impression of broad support. While there is a high variation of first authors, most of them not affiliated with ICNIRP/IEEE, a tight network of just 16 key authors, dominated by ICNIRP and IEEE affiliates, is involved in all the papers used to underpin ICNIRP 2020 (Pattern 4). Moreover, in the co-authorship network (Pattern 1) ICNIRP affiliates are found as central nodes, while most first authors are peripheral in the network.Intentionally or not, the domination of ICNIRP affiliated authorship is blurred by the practice of having many different non-affiliates as first authors. This conceals the fact that effectively all referenced papers used to support ICNIRP 2020 originate from a network of researchers completely dominated by ICNIRP affiliates and a few who are closely related.
  5.  Pattern 6: All referenced papers not authored by the ICNIRP co-authorship network are either rejected, misinterpreted to underpin ICNIRP 2020, or offer no scientifically sound support.

Our analysis shows that ICNIRP 2020 itself and, in practice, all its referenced supportive literature stem from a network of co-authors with just 17 researchers at its core, most of them affiliated with ICNIRP and/or the IEEE and with ICNIRP 2020 authors in prominent positions, where those who are not are still closely related.

The overlaps between ICNIRP and the committees authoring the referenced literature reviews have been documented multiple times [41920]. However, it was not anticipated that these ties would be so strong, that they include all committees behind the literature reviews, as well as the authorships of all the peer reviewed papers used to underpin ICNIRP 2020. Indeed, we would never have expected to find as few as 17 key authors as the smallest set of authors involved in all the literature used to underpin the ICNIRP 2020, and that they constitute a network heavily overlapping with the ICNIRP 2020 authors themselves. It was also not anticipated that the ICNIRP 2020 authors themselves would be represented in all committees. This means that the authors of ICNIRP 2020 are exclusively referring to themselves and their fellow network members as the basis for their own scientifically highly controversial recommendations.

As well, it was highly unexpected to find that the WHO report [11] described in ICNIRP 2020 as “an in-depth review from the World Health Organization on radiofrequency EMF exposure and health” [2 p. 486] and presented in these words: “This independent review is the most comprehensive and thorough appraisal of the adverse effects of radiofrequency EMFs on health” [2 p. 517], is in fact a retracted draft where five out of six WHO core group members were ICNIRP affiliates, of whom three are among the authors of ICNIRP 2020. Such a claim and circularity of authorship is encroaching upon something very similar to fraud.

From our findings we draw the conclusion that the referenced literature used in ICNIRP 2020 to underpin its guidelines is neither varied, nor independent or balanced, and is by no means “consistent with current scientific knowledge”, as claimed by ICNIRP 2020 [2 p. 484]. ICNIRP 2020 bases this claim within this small network only, a claim that runs contrary to the majority of biology-oriented researchers and publications within this research field. Hence, our review shows that the ICNIRP 2020 guidelines fail to meet fundamental scientific quality requirements as to being built on a broad, solid and established knowledge base, uphold a view contrary to well established knowledge within the field, and therefore cannot offer a basis for good governance when setting RF exposure limits for the protection of human health.

Open access paper: https://www.degruyter.com/document/doi/10.1515/reveh-2022-0037/html

Science, Politics, and Groupthink [Health Matters]A world-renowned scientist and former ICNIRP Commissioner accuses ICNIRP of “groupthink” in the following paper.

The “privately constituted group, with self-appointed membership” referred to in this paper is the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). ICNIRP has global influence on official regulations regarding wireless radiation exposure limits including the WHO and the FCC. Dr. Lin, an ICNIRP Commission member from 2004-2016, accuses the organization of groupthink in this paper published in the IEEE Microwave Magazine.

James C. Lin, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois Chicago is one of the most renowned scientists who has studied the biological interactions of wireless radiation. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. Since 2006 he has been the Editor-in-Chief of the Bioelectromagnetics journal published on behalf of the Bioelectromagnetics Society (BEMS), an international organization of biological and physical scientists, physicians and engineers interested in the interactions of electromagnetic fields with biological systems.

(I bolded key sentences in the excerpts below. The one-sentence abstract seems misleading which makes me wonder whether the editors of IEEE Microwave Magazine censored the original abstract.) 

James C. Lin. Science, Politics, and Groupthink [Health Matters]. IEEE Microwave Magazine. 22(5):24-26. May 2021. doi: 10.1109/MMM.2021.3056975. 


Discusses how the COVID-19 health pandemic worldwide was complicated by not only health and medical concerns, but the inclusion of politics, conspiracy theories, and social media.


“Fast forward to the 21st century, when, in 2011, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified exposure to RF radiation as 2B—a possible cancer-causing agent to humans. The IARC had evaluated the then-available scientific studies and, although evidence was incomplete and limited (especially regarding results from animal experiments), concluded that the epidemiological studies of humans reported increased health risks for long-term users of cellular mobile telephones. These risks included gliomas (a type of malignant brain cancer) and acoustic neuromas (or acoustic schwannomas—a nonmalignant tumor of the auditory nerves on the side of the brain). This evidence was sufficiently strong to support a classification of exposure to RF radiation possibly being carcinogenic for humans [2][3].

In 2018, the National Toxicology Program (NTP) of the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Science (NIEHS) reported observations of two types of cancers in laboratory rats that were exposed, for their entire lives, to RF radiation used for 2G and 3G wireless cellular mobile telephone operations [4][5]. This is the largest health-effect study ever undertaken by the NIEHS/NTP for any agent. A 12-member peer review panel of independent scientists convened by NIEHS/NTP evaluated the toxicology and carcinogenesis studies and concluded, among other observations, that there was statistically significant and “clear evidence” that the RF radiation had led to the development of malignant schwannoma in the heart of male rats.

Shortly after the NTP report, the Cesare Maltoni Cancer Research Center at the Ramazzini Institute in Bologna, Italy, published the results from its comprehensive study on carcinogenicity in rats with lifelong exposure to 2G/3G 1,800-MHz RF radiation [6]. The study involved whole-body exposure of male and female rats under plane-wave equivalent or far-zone exposure conditions. A statistically significant increase in the rate of schwannomas in the hearts of male rats was detected for 0.1-W/kg RF exposure. It is critical to note that the recent NTP and Ramazzini RF exposure studies presented similar findings about heart schwannomas and brain gliomas. Thus, two relatively well-conducted RF exposure studies, employing the same strain of rats, showed consistent results of significantly increased cancer risks from mobile phone exposures.

It is critical to note that the recent NTP and Ramazzini RF exposure studies presented similar findings about heart schwannomas and brain gliomas. Thus, two relatively well-conducted RF exposure studies, employing the same strain of rats, showed consistent results of significantly increased cancer risks from mobile phone exposures.

Recently, a privately constituted group, with self-appointed membership, published a set of guidelines for limiting exposure to RF electromagnetic fields in the 100-kHz and 300-GHz frequency range [7]. The proposed guidelines were primarily based on the tissue-heating potentials of RF radiation to elevate animal body temperatures to greater than 1° C. While recognizing that the two aforementioned studies used large numbers of animals, best laboratory practice, and animals exposed for the entirety of their lives, the private group preferred to quibble with alleged “chance differences” between treatment conditions and the fact that the measured animal body core temperature changes reached 1° C, implying that a 1° C body core temperature rise is carcinogenic, ignoring the RF exposure. The group then pronounced that, when considered either in isolation or within the context of other animal carcinogenicity research, these findings do not provide evidence that RF radiation is carcinogenic.

Furthermore, the group noted that, even though many epidemiological studies of RF radiation associated with mobile phone use and cancer risk had been performed, studies on brain tumors, acoustic neuroma, meningioma, and parotid gland tumors had not provided evidence of an increased cancer risk. It suggested that, although somewhat elevated odds ratios were observed, inconsistencies and limitations, including recall or selection bias, precluded these results from being considered for setting exposure guidelines. The simultaneous penchant to dismiss and criticize positive results and the fondness for and eager acceptance of negative findings are palpable and concerning.

In contrast, the IARC’s evaluation of the same epidemiological studies ended up officially classifying RF radiation as possibly carcinogenic to humans [2], [3].

An understandable question that comes to mind is this: How can there be such divergent evaluations and conclusions of the same scientific studies? Humans are not always rational or as transparent as advertised, and scientists are not impervious to conflicts of interest and can be driven by egocentric motivations. Humans frequently make choices and decisions that defy clear logic.

Science has never been devoid of politics, believe it or not.”

“Biases can impair rational judgment and lead to poor decisions. Emotions can keep humans from being rational and prevent us from arriving at obvious conclusions. At times, humans systematically make choices and decisions that defy clear logic. Regrettably, the herd mentality or groupthink is as rampant today as ever.

Some years ago, I commented, “Science has become partisan. And the corollary, if science becomes partisan, is it science or politics, or would it be political science?” [8]. Perhaps, it is simply a matter of the willing being politically correct.

When decisions are not arrived at by prudently balancing the facts or are made via impaired rational judgment, it could lead to poor decisions through biases.

Cellular mobile communication and associated wireless technologies have proven, beyond any debate, their direct benefit to humans. However, as for the verdict on the health and safety of billions of people who are exposed to unnecessary levels of RF radiation over extended lengths of time or even over their lifetimes, the jury is still out. When confronted with such divergent assessments of science, the ALARA—as low as reasonably achievable—practice and principle should be followed for RF health and safety.”

[7] “ICNIRP guidelines for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields (100 kHz to 300 GHz),” Health Phys., vol. 118, no. 5, pp. 483–524, 2020.



Aspects on the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) 2020 Guidelines on Radiofrequency Radiation

Lennart Hardell, Mona Nilsson, Tarmo Koppel, Michael Carlberg. Aspects on the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) 2020 Guidelines on Radiofrequency Radiation. J Cancer Sci Clin Ther. 2021; 5(2): 250-285. doi: 10.26502/jcsct.5079117.


The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) published 2020 updated guidelines on radiofrequency (RF) radiation in the frequency range 100 kHz to 300 GHz. Harmful effects on human health and the environment at levels below the guidelines are downplayed although evidence is steadily increasing. Only thermal (heating) effects are acknowledged and therefore form the basis for the guidelines. Despite the increasing scientific evidence of non-thermal effects, the new ICNIRP guidelines are not lower compared with the previous levels. Expert groups from the WHO, the EU Commission and Sweden are to a large extent made up of members from ICNIRP, with no representative from the many scientists who are critical of the ICNIRP standpoint.


“As a general rule ICNIRP, WHO, SCENIHR and SSM have for many years dismissed available studies showing harmful effects from non-thermal RF exposure and have based their conclusions mainly on studies showing no effects. Results showing risk are criticized, disregarded or not even cited while studies showing no risks are accepted as evidence of no risk in spite of severe methodological problems. Many statements by these agencies are misleading and not correct. They are easily rebutted by reading the relevant publications….

All these expert groups dominated by ICNIRP consequently reach similar conclusions that there are no health effects below ICNIRP guidelines. No representative from the scientific community that is of the opinion that there is increasing evidence of health risks below the ICNIRP guidelines, e.g. as expressed in the EMF Scientists Appeal [24], has ever been a member of the expert groups at the WHO, the EU, the SSM or ICNIRP. Certainly scientists who do not discount evidence of health effects from exposure to RF radiation that are observed at exposures below guideline levels should be represented….

ICNIRP is not representative of the scientific community since it does not include representatives from scientists that agree there is evidence of harmful effects at levels well below ICNIRPs limits although these scientists are in majority in the scientific community [24].”


“ICNIRP’s conclusion [48] on cancer risks is: “In summary, no effects of radiofrequency EMFs on the induction or development of cancer have been substantiated.” This conclusion is not correct and is contradicted by scientific evidence. Abundant and convincing evidence of increased cancer risks and other negative health effects are today available. The ICNIRP 2020 guidelines allow exposure at levels known to be harmful. In the interest of public health, the ICNIRP 2020 guidelines should be immediately replaced by truly protective guidelines produced by independent scientists.”

Open access paper: https://www.fortunejournals.com/abstract/aspects-on-the-international-commission-on-nonionizing-radiation-protection-icnirp-2020-guidelines-on-radiofrequency-radiation-2261.html

5g tests the limits of trust

Dariusz Leszczynski, Tekniikka & Talous, Jan 20, 2022  (Google translation from Finnish)

Dariusz Leszczynski estimates that the regulation of radiation in mobile communications is not sufficiently based on scientific evidence. More data. Coverage of 5g networks is increasing all the time.

In 2020, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation (ICNIRP) updated its safety guidelines regarding exposure to radio frequency radiation (RF-EMF) emitted by wireless communication devices such as mobile phones and their base stations. The previous standard was from 1998.

The World Health Organization WHO recommends the mentioned guideline, which has been adopted by a large part of the world’s countries and has become part of the wireless regulatory framework. Although the US uses IEEE/ICES and FCC standards, it also seeks to “harmonize” with Icnirp.

ICNIRP’s safety instructions are based on one basic principle, according to which the only proven health effect caused by radiation exposure is the thermal effect. It appears when the temperature of the skin tissue rises above 1 degree Celsius, and when the temperature rise falls below one degree Celsius, the radiation is considered harmless to health. ICNIRP’s view is that the radiation level of wireless devices according to its safety guidelines is not sufficient to produce a temperature rise in skin tissue. Furthermore, according to ICNIRP’s science review, without that temperature rise there can be no proven effects. ICNIRP has drawn up its safety instructions to protect consumers only from possible thermal effects, which the commission considers sufficient.

However, there are a large number of experimentally observed thermal-independent, non-thermal effects in both animals and laboratory-grown cells caused by exposure to wireless radiation well below the current exposure limits set by ICNIRP. The researchers are concerned that similar, non-thermal reactions would also occur in users of mobile devices. This could lead to health problems. According to ICNIRP’s scientific position, this could not happen. Is the assessment of scientific evidence biased? Not all observations made by researchers about non-thermal effects can be “pure hallucinations”.

ICNIRP’s instructions therefore only prevent the occurrence of an acute heat effect lasting from minutes to hours, but not repeated and long-lasting from months to decades. Although there have been published studies on acute effects that occur during or shortly after exposure, there are very few publications on long-term chronic exposure. The application of ICNIRP’s standards to the real situation seems to be based on a mere safety assumption without a scientific basis.

The standard is advertised as sufficient for every user regardless of age or health. ICNIRP assures that all population groups are equally protected, whether it is the growing and developing body of a small child, or an elderly person suffering from a chronic, potentially fatal disease, or a young, healthy, robust adult man.

Since human experimentation is limited for obvious ethical reasons, we need to look at epidemiology to determine long-term effects. Studies of long-term biological effects or health effects can take years and have limitations, so information is scarce. That is, there is no evidence to guarantee that Icnirp’s safety instructions would cover everyone, regardless of age or health status, also taking into account how long people have been using wireless devices. It’s all about assumptions without a scientific basis.

Looking at the ICNIRP commission, it is easy to see that the members have very similar views on key issues. They have expressed almost the same opinion; “wireless networks are absolutely safe within all security limits set by ICNIRP.” The scientific assessments prepared by ICNIRP’s experts are often in conflict with the assessments of researchers outside the organisation’s operations. It is even more interesting to observe how the members of the commission act when they are placed in national scientific committees in the company of scientists from outside the organization. In this case, they may draw conclusions that conflict with ICNIRP’s views. Recently, these dissenting opinions were published by, among others, the BERENIS Committee in Switzerland,

For most users of wireless technology, Icnirp is just an abbreviation. Consumers are told that it acts only as a committee on science with no other influence, be it industry or a government radiation regulatory body. However, many users are not aware of how Icnirp works in practice. For your consideration:

1. ICNIRP is a group of about a dozen scientists who do not claim to represent anyone but themselves.

2. It presents itself as outside the lobbying influence of industry and national radiation protection organizations.

3. Retired members will be replaced by new members elected by the current members.

4. ICNIRP’s selection criteria and their justifications for selecting new members are not publicly available. Only members know why a person has been selected for their group.

5. ICNIRP is not responsible for the scientific decisions it makes to any party.

6. No one can control the methods used by ICNIRP to achieve the safety guidelines it recommends.

7. No one supervises its operation.

8. It is not legally responsible for its scientific statements. Legal liability is limited to what members say. It’s just a matter of instructions and no one is legally obliged to use them. Even if the instructions turned out to be incorrect, no one could legally sue ICNIRP.

However, the telecommunications industry and national radiation protection organizations have ended up using ICNIRP’s safety instructions. By doing so, they are legally responsible for any health risks caused by the devices they manufacture, even if they meet ICNIRP’s guidelines. In other words, the Commission avoids the legal responsibility that remains with the operators in the field if the use of the equipment causes health problems. The members themselves are responsible only to “God and history” for all the right or wrong decisions they make.

In order to fully understand the great significance of this complete lack of oversight of Icnirp’s operations, it must be remembered that the safety guidelines developed by Icnirp are the only guidelines used by the industry that manufactures and operates wireless communication equipment and infrastructure in most of the world.

Basically, ICNIRP’s security guidelines legitimize the operation of the telecommunications industry, which in 2019 had an annual value of approximately $1.74 trillion worldwide. The ICNIRP in question is an organization that claims to be completely independent of all outside interests and operates without any kind of supervisor or control, without responsibility for its scientific decisions.

The introduction of the new 5th generation wireless communication, 5g, which is currently underway, has further raised the debate about the validity of ICNIRP’s standards. New in wireless 5g communication is the use of millimeter waves and frequencies above 20 GHz – 300 GHz. Although millimeter waves can transfer large amounts of data, they have the problem of how far the data can be sent within the limits of short wavelength bandwidth. This causes very frequent deployment of base stations (cell antennas) in different areas. Roughly estimating, one small base station would be placed on every other lamp post, and base stations would also be required inside buildings. In practice, this leads to the fact that in a few years, urban environments will be saturated with millimeter waves, when 5g has been fully implemented.

In its 2020 guidelines, ICNIRP assures that consumers’ health is fully protected. How does the Commission know that? Research on millimeter waves and health is limited. Recently published scientific reviews have selected various databases and found only a small number of studies on the health effects of millimeter waves. Most of the publications deal with radiation measurements and dosimetry, not biological or health effects. In 2019 Simkó and Mattsson published a review that included only 97 experimental studies and in 2020 Leszczynski published a review of 99 experimental studies. In 2021, Karipidis et al. published a review that included 107 experimental studies. Most millimeter wave studies consist of small, laboratory or animal experiments,

The lack of research causes confusion and problems in communities. When users ask for scientific evidence about the health effects of 5g millimeter waves, they get no answers. Research has not yet been done sufficiently and the safety of 5g cannot be scientifically proven. However, it would be possible to conduct a sufficient number of studies on 5g that would either show whether the health effects are minor or even insignificant.

It is interesting, but also worrying, to note what Rodney Croft, chairman of ICNIRP, a professor of psychology at the University of Wollongong, Australia, stated in an interview on Australian TV on June 16, 2020: “There is no harm associated with 5g”. “Look, it’s quite true that the amount of research looking at 5g is very limited, but from a science perspective, this is simply not relevant.”

In this scientifically and legally complex situation, there is an urgent need to carry out an independent validation of the results of ICNIRP’s scientific review and the validity of its safety guidelines.

The author is PhD, DSc, docent of biochemistry at the University of Helsinki and editor-in-chief of the Radiation and Health section of Frontiers in Public Health (impact factor 3.709). He has worked from 2000 to 2013 as a research professor at the Radiation Protection Center.


Health risks from radiofrequency radiation, including 5G, should be assessed by experts with no conflicts of interest

Lennart Hardell, Michael Carlberg, Health risks from radiofrequency radiation, including 5G, should be assessed by experts with no conflicts of interest. Oncol Lett. 2020 Oct;20(4):15. doi: 10.3892/ol.2020.11876.


The fifth generation, 5G, of radiofrequency (RF) radiation is about to be implemented globally without investigating the risks to human health and the environment. This has created debate among concerned individuals in numerous countries. In an appeal to the European Union (EU) in September 2017, currently endorsed by >390 scientists and medical doctors, a moratorium on 5G deployment was requested until proper scientific evaluation of potential negative consequences has been conducted. This request has not been acknowledged by the EU. The evaluation of RF radiation health risks from 5G technology is ignored in a report by a government expert group in Switzerland and a recent publication from The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection. Conflicts of interest and ties to the industry seem to have contributed to the biased reports. The lack of proper unbiased risk evaluation of the 5G technology places populations at risk. Furthermore, there seems to be a cartel of individuals monopolizing evaluation committees, thus reinforcing the no-risk paradigm. We believe that this activity should qualify as scientific misconduct.

Open access paper: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7405337/



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