(en)TV Towers Thought Linked to Leukemia

The Anarchives (tao@lglobal.com)
Tue, 10 Dec 1996 21:44:28 +0000 (GMT)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 9 Dec 96 14:30:11 CST
From: Mark Graffis <ab758@virgin.usvi.net>
Subject: TV Towers Thought Linked to Leukemia

Copyright &copy 1996 Reuter Information Service

SYDNEY (Dec 9, 1996 01:06 a.m. EST) - An Australian study has
suggested a possible link between childhood leukaemia and radiation
from television transmission towers, according to a paper published in
the Medical Journal of Australia on Monday.

University researchers found that children living in three Sydney
areas near television towers were almost two-and-a-half times more
likely to die from leukaemia than those in surrounding suburbs.

Children in the three areas were also one-and-a-half times more likey
to contract leukaemia, said the paper.

However, the authors of the research, which considered cancer rates
between 1972 and 1990 in a region of Sydney with a total population of
almost 700,000, said no conclusion could be drawn until further work
was conducted.

Joint author Heather Grain, from La Trobe University in Victoria
state, said the study had demonstrated an association but not a causal
relationship. "I can say there is smoke, but not what is causing the
fire," she said.

However, Grain said it was an "interesting coincidence" that the three
areas of Sydney with the higher rates of leukaemia had hosted three
television towers since 1956.

"There is a significant problem with leukaemia in those three suburbs
and we should find out what it is," Grain said.

Grain said there was also a correlation with increased leukaemia in
adults, but the relationship was stronger for children.

The Australian government on Monday said the new study would be taken
into account before a final decision to revise standards on
electromagnetic radiation, due in February.

However, Science and Technology Minister Peter McGauran stressed that
the study was far from conclusive.

The government recently allocated A$4.5 million (US$3.5 million) for
research into health issues associated with mobile telephones and
telephone towers, following community concern about radiation.

Australia has one of the highest take-up rates of mobile telephones in
the world, with about four million in use among a population of about
18 million.