Tell Congress and the FCC: Stop Throttling Local Democracy

Telecom companies are preparing to unleash the next wave of wireless technology in neighborhoods across the nation, deployed block by block. The telecoms industry, with an assist by the federal government, is barring the ability of local governments to manage how the new technologies get installed.

Telecom companies are installing the infrastructure needed for "5G" networks, which are up to 1,000 times faster than the current 4G networks. Setting up 5G networks requires "small cells" to be placed on streetlights and utility poles throughout neighborhoods and cities. These "small cells" include antennas, power supplies, electric meters, switches, bundles of cables, and boxes--all strapped to the poles. Some have refrigerator-sized containers on the ground. These cells are supposed to be placed every 500 feet along residential streets and through commercial districts. 

Homeowners worry that the small cells are unattractive and will affect property values. Even more disturbing are the health concerns. Small cells emit microwave radiation and essentially function as cell towers. Placing these units every 500 feet means that communities will be bathed in radiation. We've written before about the health implications of over-exposure to microwaves. Microwave radiation can negatively affect mitochondrial function, cause cell damage and DNA breaks, accelerates aging, and puts us at a higher risk for chronic disease. A recent study from the National Toxicology Program showed rats exposed to cell phone radiation at the federally allowable level had an increased risk for brain and heart tumors. Animal studies have demonstrated the health dangers of the radio frequencies used by 5G, including: arrhythmias in frogs, immune system effects in healthy mice, lens opacity (linked with cataracts) in rats, and more.

It's no surprise, then, that many communities are fighting to control how 5G gets deployed, but the telecom giants and the federal government continue to threaten local autonomy. 

Telecom companies are working with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to steamroll local governments into kowtowing to whatever industry says it needs. The FCC recently approved rules that limit the fees local governments can charge telecom companies for use of public utilities and property. Other rules already on the books have "streamlined" small cell deployment by reducing the time cities and counties have to review applications. The agency is studying how they could limit cities' requirements on the look and design of small cells.

This is unacceptable. Special interests are using the power of the federal government to ignore local laws and endanger our health. 

Write to Congress and the FCC, telling them to stop undermining local democracy and to study the health effects of 5G technology.

Recipients

  • Your Senators
  • Your Representative
  • Federal Communications Commission

Contact

*Required fields
 
 

Message

Please allow communities to control 5G tech

Dear [Decision Maker],

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]
[Your Email]