New Swiss Re Report Dubs 5G “Next Asbestos”
Looks like the 5G network — touted as the next coming for the tech sector — could well share the fate of the Segway, that over-hyped, over-promised revolution in motorized personal transport that did not materialize. To the disappointment of many savvy Segway investors and inventor Dean Kamen, the gigantic motorized scooter ended up as a niche market for business, medical and military security programs, and tour groups unafraid to appear slothful.
Not surprisingly, insurance for operating the machine required special provisions, especially after the very public pratfalls of President George H.W. Bush and journalist Piers Morgan, and the tragic death in 2010 of Segway’s newest owner, James W. Heselden, after driving off a cliff.
In 1997, after attending briefings about the looming disasters posed by superstorms from global climate change at the Kyoto conference, Mutual of Omaha and Metropolitan Life Insurance refused to cover warming-related damage. Now the secondary insurance market is explicitly refusing to insure against damages from 5G and other electromagnetic fields (EMF), fearing the technology that has yet to be built could potentially wreak as much havoc for their industry as asbestos did more than three decades earlier when it bankrupted several corporations.
In response to the growing unease of the insurance industry and pending lawsuits from more than 100 cities, companies are pouring millions into lobbying for 5G which will bring higher radiation levels to our front yards. In the U.S. the telecom industry is one of the most generous bi-partisan supporters of Congress and has the full support of Senators John Thune and Brian Schatz who have reintroduced federal streamlining legislation stripping local authority about the placement of 800 thousand new antennas, while some state legislation transfers liability from corporations to the government.
5G “Off the Leash”
These proposed bills constitute a blatant attempt to block local sayso and circumvent corporate responsibility while ignoring the growing evidence of risk. A recent report from Swiss Re Institute, the world’s second largest secondary insurance firm, has just dubbed the risk of 5G as “off the leash,” and “high to business,” reaffirming exclusionary policies for health or environmental damages from wireless products that began more than thirty years ago.
In effect, these proposed laws provide government bailouts and immunity for corporate 5G liabilities. As part of its 10K required report to its stockholders and the Federal Trade Commission, Crown Castle, a company installing new antennas nationwide conceded this year: “If a connection between radio frequency emissions and possible negative health effects were established, our operations, costs, or revenues may be materially and adversely affected. We currently do not maintain any significant insurance with respect to these matters.“
Swiss Re’s report notes a litany of issues. “Growing concerns about the health implications of 5G may lead to political friction and delay of implementation, and to liability claims. Heated international dispute over 5G contractors and potential for espionage or sabotage could affect international cooperation, and impact financial markets negatively. As the biological effects of EMF in general and 5G, in particular, are still being debated, potential claims for health impairments may come with a long latency.”
New Science Questions Standards
Adding fuel to that fire, recently Senior Scientist Esra Neufeld with the Swiss Foundation for Research on Information Technologies in Society (IT’IS) — a highly respected, government and industry supported non-profit, warned that current standards “do not prevent thermal damage of the skin” and “research is urgently needed” to assess their health risks. Indeed the capacity of 5G to induce a sensation that skin is afire is critical to the nonlethal weapons program of the Department of Defense that employs 5G frequencies to power Active Crowd Denial device. Researchers are now warning that 5G also could directly harm pollinating insects, and that current wireless radiation can damage trees, wildlife, birds, and bees.
There is a substantial body of science pinpointing hazards of wireless radiation. Most recently, the World Health Organization advisory group has called for a re-evaluation of a 2011 expert conclusion that found wireless radiation a “possible” carcinogen in light of the cancer findings of the National Toxicology Program and other new studies published since then. Several experts now consider wireless radiation to be an established human carcinogen.
Public confusion about this science is a credit to longstanding influence over authorities that has been thoroughly detailed in investigative reports. Legislative support for 5G streamlining and liability exemptions is also a credit to industry lobbyists. Not only are these bills a grave disservice to public health and the environment, but they also will place tremendous financial burdens on taxpayers to fund government bail-outs.
Show us the money?
Meanwhile, the hype about super-fast speeds and uninterrupted calls with 5G remains brilliant marketing razzmatazz that has yet to materialize even in several purported demonstrations. Last week, the BBC ran their own live demonstration of failure on the air, cheekily rebroadcasting the segment “The moment 5G fails live on air.” In explaining what had gone wrong when they tried to broadcast live from a busy street, reporters noted that the actual broadcast speed was but 5 percent of what had been promised. In truth, 5G systems remain works in progress with the U.S. trying to figure it out while we build it and hardly living up to its billing as the second coming in telecommunications. Demonstrations of the whiz-bang capacity of 5G have fallen spectacularly flat from Hawaii to Chicago, where speed tests briefly appeared solid but downloads stalled, sometimes blocked by hands that interfere with infrared and other sensors built into costly 5G phones.
FCC Dismisses NOAA Concerns for Weather Prediction
If 5G as currently posed were to become widespread, the capacity to forecast weather will be set back almost 4 decades, warns expert analysts from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. Although he is not known to have meteorological competence, in remarks to a Senate oversight committee this week, FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, dismisses the concerns of NOAA Assistant Secretary Neil Jacobs who had previously testified to a House hearing on May 16, that lead times for hurricane forecasts would be cut by two to three days and that global satellite systems would be jeopardized.
Wired Systems Faster, Safer, More Secure
With so many localities objecting to new antennas essential to the 5G network, companies admitting their financial vulnerabilities to their shareholders, and scientists recognizing that currently anticipated 5G exposures exceed safety guidelines and also endanger weather prediction, another option urgently needs to be considered: Rather than insisting that 5G be transmitted wirelessly throughout the urban environment, hard-wired fiber-optic cable should be provided directly to and through military, medical, corporate and research facilities. This would be faster, safer and more secure and would avoid wirelessly radiating millions of unsuspecting citizens and critically sensitive wildlife, as well as mucking up disaster preparedness by interfering with systems critical to meteorological forecasts.
Devra Davis is an award-winning writer and Visiting Professor of Medicine, The Hebrew University, and President of Environmental Health Trust, a Jackson-Wyoming based scientific think tank, and the author of more than 220 scientific publications and the books Disconnect — the truth about cell phone radiation and The Secret History of the War on Cancer.