Paul Ben Ishai
Paul Ben Ishai
Just muddling through.......

The FCC has fallen to the sword of Lady Justice!

Opening page of the Decision by the Court of Appeals against the FCC (reproduced from https://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/opinions.nsf   Copyright : Public Access to Court Electronic Records)
Opening page of the Decision by the Court of Appeals against the FCC (reproduced from https://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/opinions.nsf Copyright : Public Access to Court Electronic Records)

Today I am joyous!!  In a landmark decision, the Court of Appeals of Washington DC (one level below the Supreme Court) has ruled against the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The plaintiffs were a coalition of groups advocating safer limits for the exposure to wireless radiation, chief among them the Environmental Health Trust and the Children Health Defense.

The petition stated that in establishing its 2020 regulations governing the exposure of the general public to radiation originating from cellphones, wireless and their attendant infrastructure, the FCC did employ an “arbitrary and capricious” process. Basically, they willfully ignored 1800 comments against the ruling and dismissed any science that contradicted them. They then reaffirmed the old 1996 standard and extended it to cover higher frequencies so that the implementation of 5G networks wouldn’t be damaged. The  Court of Appeals said clearly that that was wrong and demanded that the FCC provide their “reasoned explanation for its determination that its guidelines adequately protect against harmful effects of exposure to radiofrequency radiation ….”  Effectively, the regulation is on hold and for the first time the FCC must answer to a court.  And you don’t arrogantly dismiss a court in the United States………

Of course, the FCC will appeal this decision to the Supreme Court, but that is an inherent risk. By doing so they may gain time, establish facts on the ground so to speak.  The damage would then be immense if the Supreme Court would also rule against them (quite likely, given the nature of the ruling). If the FCC cannot provide an adequate response to the science – I don’t believe the could – then the entire cellphone industry is at risk.  There are a plethora of petitions against the 5G role out (see my post about some of them here).  All of them are going to be influenced by this decision.  Goliath is staggering from the sling shot blow from little David.  He isn’t down yet though…

Another damaging and potentially game-changer jumps from the text of the ruling.  The Judges effectively called into question the entire certification process by pointing out that the current method of establishing how much cellphone radiation a person absorbs (the SAM certification process) is based on the premise that the current exposure levels are safe.  As they stated:

As the Commission (Ed. The FCC) itself recognizes, this explanation depends on the premise that RF radiation does not cause harmful effects at levels below its current limits. See id. at 11,696 n.49 (“We note that any claim as to the adequacy of the FCC required testing, certification, and authorization regime is no different than a challenge to the adequacy of the federal RF exposure limits themselves. Both types of claims would undermine the FCC’s substantive policy determinations.”). The Commission’s failure to provide a reasoned explanation for its determination that exposure to RF radiation at levels below its current limits does not cause negative health effects therefore renders inadequate the Commission’s explanation for its refusal to modify its testing procedures.

If this ruling stands the fire of the Supreme Court, the cellphone industry is going to have to radically retool………

I am personally proud of this victory because one of those comments that shook the beanstalk has my name on it (amongst others) and those judges read it.

About the Author
Originally from the UK, I made Aliyah 36 years ago. I am an Academic Staff member of the Physics Department of Ariel University, married with 3 children. I have authored of 80 publications in various fields of Physics and Chemistry. One of the subjects I specialize in is the interaction of Human skin and high frequency radio waves. I am also a scientific advisor for the Environmental Health Trust (www.ehtrust.org)
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