Keep mini mobile cell tower transmission boxes out of the Blue Mountains
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We, the undersigned, call upon you to stop the installation of small cell mobile transmission boxes currently being rolled out around Australia in preparation for 5G mobile technology.
As a resident of the Blue Mountains, I and those below, oppose the installation of the transmission boxes in our local streets, near our homes and living places, schools, health care facilities and shops.
The people of the Blue Mountains in NSW, and Australia generally, have not been consulted about their installation. As such, this can be seen as an undemocratic process illustrating the power of large, powerful profit orientated telecommunications and tech companies over our lives, choices and health.
According to an ABC article in January 2018, "Unlike the larger towers that generally require council or planning approval, the small cell boxes can be placed on power poles without any approval process under the Federal telecommunications act."
"Residents also have no say in the matter."
According to international news media articles, in order for the global transition to 5G (Fifth Generation) technology to take place, mini cell stations will be placed throughout neighbourhoods on the tops of buildings and on street light poles about every 2 to 8 homes. The purpose of 5G is to increase download speeds and connect everything (including driverless cars, fridges and more) via the internet.
While 5G builds on 4G (what we currently have), it will use a much higher, more intense radio frequency. In Australia, 4G mainly operates at frequency bands between 700-2100 megahertz, while 5G will typically sit around 3,600 megahertz (3.6GHz).
In other words, we will be exposed to a heck of a lot more radiation. And this will be closer to us too - potentially at our door.
We oppose the mobile cell transmission boxes on the following basis:
Radiofrequency electromagnetic frequencies (RF-EMF) generated by mobile network towers, and other radio signals, were classified in 2011 by the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) as a possible carcinogen to humans. This decision was based on available scientific data.
Potential negative health affects to RF-EMF according to scientific literature include:
- memory loss and cognitive effects
- skin rashes
- affects on life support systems including pacemakers
Some studies indicate an increase in parotid gland tumours (a salivary gland of the mouth and around the ear area) and in brain tumours - suspected to be related to EMF.
[Children remain the most vulnerable due to thinner skull plates than adults].
A visual eyesore, the mobile cell transmission boxes are totally at odds with what attracts locals and visitors to the area. They will bring an ugly, city feeling to our streets and neighbourhoods.
The Blue Mountains is a World Heritage Listed pristine natural environment, beloved for it's natural features, preserved heritage towns, old world architecture and activities. Katoomba, the key tourist town, is also a designated 'Slow Town'. It's important to keep it that way.
The unsightly and unhealthy cell transmission boxes are at odds with the Blue Mountains status as a heritage area and natural wilderness and Katoomba's character as a designated 'slow' town.
Local residents come to live here and tourists visit in the droves to escape the problems of the city: traffic, pollution, the built environment and other negative elements, in favour of nature, a slower pace, attractive heritage architecture and gardens, and a more sustainable, healthy way of life.
We don't need more tech and faster internet as much as we need to slow down and connect in person. All the technology we currently have hasn't solved the growing problems of our society: our growing health issues, loneliness, depression and loss of community, income inequality, and so on.
Towns that retain their natural features, including their heritage charms, will thrive in the new world ahead. Let's keep the Blue Mountains the Blue Mountains, not another Sydney. Those who want 5G will be able to find it anywhere else. But, those who don't want it will have virtually nowhere to go. Such places will be valued.
In advance of the technology coming, let's send a clear message that we won't tolerate the toxic, mini transmission towers in our neighbourhood.
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