Environment Health Trust Is Taking the FCC to Court
EHT is taking FCC to court over toxic 5G, cell phone, and wireless radiation. As one of the top commenters to the agency over the past decade, we have succeeded in previous efforts to block the agency from running roughshod over America’s legal principles.
Yet the FCC is trying to override the public safety and the law once again. This time, as in the past, our legal challenge is strong and compelling, and we are working with an attorney with a proven track record of holding the FCC accountable.
After years of delay, numerous briefings and submissions from EHT and many other concerned parties, the FCC published its official decision to stop asking questions about the safety of wireless radiating devices in the Federal Register–the government’s formal chronicle of official agency actions and to continue to operate as though the only impact to be avoided from phones or other wireless devices is an increase in temperature.
You know that is nonsense. You know that studies in both animals and humans document that wireless radiation can cause cancer, damage to reproduction, and memory loss at levels that do not generate any heat at all.
Under normal circumstances, it might be amusing to note that this FCC action took place on April Fools Day, April 1, 2020.
But, this is no joke. Our future and that of our grandchildren is at stake. At a time when billions are hunkered down relying on wireless devices outwaiting COVID-19, it is outrageous that most have no idea how and why to reduce their exposures.
In January, the FCC issued a press statement signaling that they would end any effort to review their 26-year-old cell phone radiation limits. EHT attorneys responded immediately and filed legal action against the agency with support from the Natural Resources Defense Council, one of the nation’s top environmental organizations.
Our suit contends that the agency actions were arbitrary and capricious, an abuse of discretion, and otherwise unlawful because the FCC had ignored more than 900 submissions and thousands of peer-reviewed published studies from EHT and many other scientists showing that current levels of radiation emitted by cell phones and towers can harm public health and the environment.
We could not have met our initial goal of $100,000 without tremendous outpouring of support from hundreds of generous private supporters, matching funds from an anonymous source and a grant from the Natural Resources Defense Council.
It is a real credit to our talented legal team, led by Edward Myers, who succeeded in the earlier lawsuit against the FCC, that we have come this far so fast.
Now, we need to raise an additional $100,000 to get to the critically important next phase and complete what we have started.
Keep in mind that the 2.4 trillion dollar global telecom industry spends many times more each month lobbying the federal government than we have used in our lawsuit so far. The court has given us one month to submit our brief. So there is no time to waste in getting the additional funds needed.
This will be no walk in the park. But EHT is in a strong legal position to challenge the decision by the FCC to continue using their outdated thermally-based guidelines.
EHT and each one of our fellow petitioners have actively participated in FCC proceedings over the past decade. We have published critically important scientific studies on wireless radiation and health in a Special Issue of Environmental Research and organized several major international expert forums, including the Conference on Wireless Radiation and Health supported by the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, with the Israel Institute for Advanced Study.
Thus, we are in a very strong position to challenge the FCC’s unreasonable, arbitrary, and capricious decision to flaunt mounting scientific evidence without explanation. But, we need your help, now more than ever.
The History of the FCC Decision
Eight years ago, a report by the Government Accountability Office urged the FCC to formally reassess and, if appropriate, change its radiofrequency (RF) energy exposure limits and mobile phone testing requirements. These standards, adopted in 1996, did not reflect the way people use their phones, particularly when phones are held against the body.
The GAO report led the FCC to launch an official inquiry in 2013 asking these important questions: Are US cell phone and cell tower radiation limits safe for humans? Do children need special protections? Should companies change the way they test the radiation from phones because phones are tested with a separation distance between the phone and the body?
EHT responded by submitting extensive reports to the FCC documenting that yes, the standards establishing limits on human exposure to wireless radiation needed to be changed because the scientific evidence showing harmful effects was clear and compelling (Read our comments here). EHT responded to the FCC that yes, children needed special protections because they were more vulnerable to wireless radiation. EHT responded to the FCC that yes, cell phone testing needed to be updated so that phones were tested in positions touching the body because that is how people use their phones and the evidence showed that when phones are used this way, they emit radiation that exceeds the FCC’s own outdated radiation limits.
Since our founding in 2007, EHT has frequently briefed the FCC and other federal agencies. We have met directly with the FCC on multiple occasions, and repeatedly brought in experts to share the scientific documentation that their limits are inadequate to protect the public.
When the FCC opened its official Notice of Inquiry in 2013, we and others submitted extensive peer-reviewed scientific studies definitively showing that the FCC’s standards needed to be updated to safeguard the public and the environment. The majority of submissions said loud and clear, “Wireless radiation is harmful. FCC limits do not protect us.”
In fact, the FCC received over a thousand submissions. Dr. Joel Moskowitz of the University of California Berkeley has catalogued some of the key submissions. Together, EHT and the other commenters have ensured that the FCC had scientific evidence clearly showing that RF radiation from cell phones and cell phone towers and facilities is harmful to humans and the natural environment.
In fact, the FCC named EHT as one of the top filers to the FCC on the issue. (See FCC Docket 13-84 and EHT FCC filings here.) EHT’s FCC filings are critical to the pending legal challenges against the FCC.
Yet the FCC ignored the science and, in December 2019, declaring that it would retain the existing antiquated and inadequate standards, terminated the Notice of Inquiry. The FCC even further asserted without evidence that the same approach would prove relevant to 5G.
Our health, environment and future are at stake.
We are not going to let the FCC get away with this!
Our legal petition contends the FCC’s action is “arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion” and “not in accordance with the law.” The FCC has violated the Administrative Procedure Act and the National Environmental Policy Act by failing to adequately review the hundreds of relevant scientific submissions finding harmful effects from wireless technologies.
By ignoring the science, the FCC is breaking the law.
We will never stop fighting for you and the environment.
Please join us in opposing the FCC and help us to get its action overturned.
HELP US CONTINUE OUR CASE
EHT’s lawsuit was featured in Law and Crime’s “Scientists Sue FCC for Dismissing Studies Linking Cell Phone Radiation to Cancer.”