Avner Ziv

Learn a transcript.

Subscribe to Berkeley Talks.

When the primary mobile phone went available on the market within the U.S. in 1984, it was large, clunky and really costly. The Motorola DynaTAC bought for a whopping $3,995. That’s nearly $10,000 at the moment. And, to make it even much less definitely worth the funding, it received dangerous reception as a result of there have been only a few cell towers within the nation on the time.

Right now, there are greater than 273 million smartphones in use within the U.S. (Picture by way of Flickr)

However, as everyone knows, cell telephones have come a great distance.  Along with making calls on our telephones, we will do just about every part else on them, too, identical to Apple promised we might in 2007, the 12 months the iPhone made its debut.

Right now, there are greater than 273 million smartphones in use within the nation. That’s nearly 85% of the U.S. inhabitants, assuming everyone seems to be utilizing only one telephone. And there are 5 billion subscriber connections worldwide.

“It is a large, large enterprise,” says Joel Moskowitz, the director of UC Berkeley’s Heart for Household and Neighborhood Well being on the College of Public Well being. “That is an trade that’s most likely been unparalleled by every other trade on this planet, by way of attain.”

portrait of joel moskowitz

Joel Moskowitz is the director of UC Berkeley’s Heart for Household and Neighborhood Well being on the College of Public Well being. (College of Public Well being photograph)

Moskowitz gave a chat final spring referred to as “Cell Telephones, Cell Towers and Wi-fi Security” for Be Nicely at Work, a College Well being Companies program at UC Berkeley for workers and school to enhance worker well being and well-being. The occasion was co-sponsored by the College of Public Well being.

Moskowitz, who has carried out analysis on illness prevention applications and insurance policies for greater than 30 years, says that with the inflow of smartphones has come a whole bunch of hundreds of cell towers. These towers obtain and transmit radio frequencies referred to as microwaves — the identical waves utilized in microwave ovens.

In 2011, the Worldwide Company for Analysis on Most cancers (IARC) of the World Well being Group categorised radio frequency radiation as probably carcinogenic to people, based mostly on research of mobile phone radiation and mind tumor danger in people.

“At present, we have now significantly extra proof that will work a stronger classification,” says Moskowitz, an adviser to the Worldwide EMF Scientist Enchantment signed by greater than 240 scientists who publish peer-reviewed analysis on electromagnetic radiation. “Many scientists at the moment really feel that it’s time for IARC to re-review the literature given all of the analysis that’s been printed since 2011 to improve this to at the least ‘most likely carcinogenic to people,’ if not really carcinogenic.”

To scale back the chance of hurt, Moskowitz recommends that we:

  1. Decrease use of cell telephones or cordless telephones. Use a landline each time potential.
  2. Preserve cell telephones away from our heads and our bodies. Ten inches out of your physique, as in comparison with one-tenth of an inch, ends in a 100-fold discount in radiation publicity. Retailer your telephone in a backpack or purse and textual content or use a wired headset or speakerphone for calls.
  3. Use cell telephones solely when the sign is robust. A brand new research by the state of California Division of Public Well being discovered as much as a 10,000-fold improve in electromagnetic radiation publicity when reception was poor — when you could have one or two bars in your telephone.

Be taught extra about Moskowitz’s analysis, which led to California publishing mobile phone radiation security tips, on his web site: saferemr.com.

See all Berkeley Talks.