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National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) Report W65

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January 2005

The report by two NRPB authors brings together information from the substantial number of reviews produced by national and international committees, expert groups and agencies into health effects of mobile phones and health since the publication of the Stewart Report in May 2000. These reports had reviewed the relevant literature, formed conclusions on the likelihood of adverse health effects, and made recommendations for additional research.

The intention of the NRPB report was to bring the information from the various sources together and highlight any commonality or differences of opinion.

The report concludes that most of the 26 reports examined reached similar conclusions and made comparable recommendations. The researchers conclude that:

“Overall, the reports acknowledged that exposure to low level RF fields may cause a variety of subtle biological effects on cells, animals or human, particularly on brain activity during sleep, but the possibility of exposure causing adverse health effects remains unproven.”

Commenting on the reviewed reports, the NRPB authors stated that:

“These reports stress that very low level exposures, typically of base stations, are extremely unlikely to cause any effects on biophysical grounds, whereas localised exposures, typical of those from mobile phones, may induce effects as a result of mild heating of superficial tissues close to the handset.”

The full report can be viewed on the HPA website:

No Established Adverse Health Effects

Mobile phones operate by using radio waves, a form of non-ionising radiation. There is a large body of scientific evidence on the effects of exposure to radio waves because they have been widely used for decades: for example, radio, TV and radar signals are radio waves. The scientific consensus is that, apart from the increased risk of a road accident due to mobile phone use when driving, there is no clear evidence of adverse health effects from the use of mobile phones or from phone masts. (Source: Health Protection Agency, Health Advice on Mobile Phones, May 2010).

A Wealth of Research

A large number of studies have been performed over the last two decades to assess whether mobile phones pose a potential health risk. To date, no adverse health effects have been established as being caused by mobile phone use. (Source: World Health Organisation Fact Sheet N°193, June 2011).