News from New Zealand
From: Sue Grey [mailto:sue....@tasman.net
Sent: Friday, 16 October 2009 11:53 a.m.
'Subject: Local Government and Environment
Select Committee Presentation by TCF yesterday
I was in attendance at the LG&E Select Committee hearing yesterday
morning where you presented on behalf of the Telecommunication
Carriers Forum (with Paul Leslie from Telecom and Andrew Cushin from
During your presentation I understood that you said that your members
(which include Telecom, Vodafone, Kordia and Whoosh) are not qualified
to write the law or rules but their role is to follow the various
rules and regulations including the RMA, the NES and District Plans
and the standards and guidelines which set the minimum standards for
I think you referred to the NZStandard 2772:1 1999 as an example of
standards that your members were not qualified to write, but which
they were obliged to adopt.
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that your members
were represented on the Standards Committee which developed NZS2772:1
The standard was originally to be a joint Australia and NZ standard
but the NZ group separated from the Australian group part way through
the process (as the Australians and the single NZ community
representative Dr Ivan Beale) wanted more stringent emission
standards. This is explained in part in the preface to NZS2772:1
After the NZ group was re-formed its membership was as follows:
Mr Ian Hutchings, (Chairman), Ministry of Commerce, voted yes
Mr Roger Matthews, Local Government, voted yes
Dr Andrew McEwan, National Radiation Laboratory, voted yes
Dr David Black, NZ Institute of Occupational & Environmental Medicine,
Mr Trevor Woods, Broadcast Communications Ltd, voted yes
Mr Andrew Corney, NZ Assn. of Radio Transmitters, voted yes
Mr Simon Cooke-Willis, Telecom NZ Ltd, voted yes
Dr Ivan Beale, Public representative, voted no
All the industry representatives (Mr Simon Cooke-Willis for Telecom,
Mr Trevor Woods (BCL which I understand is now Kordia), Mr Corney and
Dr Black (whose primary EMR related income seems to be from
representing Telecom, Vodafone, Transpower, the Australian Telco
Hutchison 3G in various forums) and the others with economic interests
all voted “Yes” to NZS2772:1.
The sole community representative (Dr Beale) voted “no”. This gave the
Standards committee the necessary 80% majority to approve the
I do not believe that you submission accurately represented the role
that your clients had in developing NZS2772:1 or their more recent
role in promoting and drafting the NES which adopted NZS2772:1 as a
mandatory standard. This is particularly concerning because the
NZS2772:1 uses the wrong standard of proof for assessments of effects
under the RMA.
The RMA requires consideration and the avoidance, remedying and/or
mitigation of all effects including temporary effects, cumulative
effects, potential effects of high probability and potential effects
of low probability which have a high potential impact (see RMA section
3). The NZS2772:1 adopts a very much stricter definition before it
recognises an effect – as it recognises only effects which are
scientifically certain. It therefore protects only against thermal
effects –ie immediate burns.
NZS2772:1 1999 ignores all effects that are possible but serious,
probably and/or highly probable (but not certain), including the
potential RF has alone or in combination with others factors for
causing brain tumours, mental heath effects, effects on pregnant
women, possible effects on people with pacemakers and other electrical
body parts, and effects on the estimated 4% of the population who are
electromagnetic sensitive or hypersensitive. These are all “effects”
under section 3 of the RMA which should be considered when assessing
whether a proposal represents sustainable management that achieves the
purposes of the RMA – which requires the enabling of people and
communities to provide for their social, economic and cultural
wellbeing and their health and safety.
Even more concerning is that since the NES became law there is often
no forum to consider public views about proposed new cell sites. This
is despite the recommendation in the NZS2772:1 that “it is therefore
sensible in achieving service or [process requirements to minimise
unnecessary or incidental RF exposure”.
The assumption that the public should bear all the risk and cost of
the unknown science, the lack of consultation with communities and the
repeated attempts to locate RF transmitters in inappropriate locations
such as near schools, preschools and residential homes are some of the
reasons why informed community members are so opposed to the current
EMR management regime.
In order to avoid confusion, I would be very grateful if you would
inform the Select Committee of the role that Telecom and other
industry representatives had in the Standards Committee which
developed NZS2772:1 1999 and their active role in developing and
promoting the NES.
If you think I have misunderstood anything or you wish to discuss this
further, please feel free to ring me on 03 5450878 or email me.
Thank you very much for your consideration.
Sue Grey LLB(Hons), BSC, RSHDipPHI and concerned mother for three
Ban the Tower Inc
From: Sue Grey sue....@tasman.net
Sent: Sunday, 18 October 2009 3:35 p.m.
Dear Ministers of Health, Environment and Infrastructure
You may be interested in the following news from Maine, USA that
legislators there (both Democrats and Republicans) have voted
unanimously for emergency legislation to require warnings on
cellphones for pregnant women and children. This follows the interim
results of the international Interphone Study which shows a
significant increase in certain types of brain tumours (on the side of
the head where the cellphone is used) 10 or more years after even
modest cellphone use.
All countries use the same international research. Why do our NZ
“experts” continue to deny the biological effects and risks of radio
frequency and microwave radiation that European and Asian states (and
increasingly also American states) protect against?
Your problems funding Accident Compensation will inevitably get
considerably worse when the latent effects of occupational use of
cellphones start appearing in large numbers unless NZ urgently reviews
its approach. This is particularly worrying bearing in mind that most
insurers already reject cover for health effects cased by EMR and the
Limitation Bill may well prevent “product liability” claims where the
causation and harm takes time to develop and prove- thereby putting
the whole cost on the public health system.
Thank you for your roles in letting the LG&E Select Committee re-
commence its inquiry into matters raised in petitions from communities
in Nelson, Auckland and Manukau. This is a big step forward.
It would be excellent if as a result of that inquiry (and/or of your
own initiative) you could:
a) open up membership of the government’s Interagency Committee on
the Health Effects of Non-Ionising Radiation to remove members who
have no relevant qualifications and who represent vested interests and
replace them with members who have expertise in this area;
b) review the NES to ensure it achieves the sustainable management
purposes of the Resource Management Act and the WHO recommendations
for consultation with affected communities;
c) ensure an urgent review of the New Zealand Standard for
Radiofrequencies emissions NZS2772:1 to ensure NZ adopts best
international practice. In the absence of sufficient funding and /or
expertise for review by the NZ Standards Association, you may consider
adopting the Swiss standard for EMR emissions, which represents best
international practice, is based on all the latest research and
enables a country with similar typography to New Zealand to offer the
very highest standards of technology to its residents.
As always I’m happy to discuss this issue.
Sue Grey LLB(Hons), BSc, RSHDipPHI
Ph 03 5450878
Informant: Martin Weatherall