BETHESDA, MD — March 16, 2011 – Devra Lee Davis, Ph.D., M.P.H., award-winning author and President of Environmental Health Trust (EHT), will lecture on cell phone safety at the Pyle Middle School Cafeteria, 6311 Wilson Lane, Bethesda, MD on Thursday, March 17 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. Admission is free to the public.
In her lecture, Dr. Davis will reveal new warnings, aired by the conservative British and Israeli governments, that children should limit their use of cell phones next to their brains and bodies. She will discuss important new research from Israel, the U.S. and Australia. Her talk will also include steps that parents can take today to reduce the level of cell phone radiation faced by their children, who are at greater risk than adults due to their growing brains, thinner skulls and relatively long exposure times.
Dr. Davis, who recently testified before a U.S. committee panel about the dangers of cell phone use, is the author of Disconnect: The Truth about Cell Phone Radiation, What the Industry Has Done to Hide It, and How to Protect Your Family (Dutton, 2010). She is the first Director of the National Academy of Science’s Board of Toxicology and Environmental Studies, founder and former Director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh’s Hillman Cancer Center and is a National Cancer Center Institute Senior Fellow in Cancer Epidemiology.
Determined to protect children from the dangers of cell phone irradiation, Dr. Davis recently launched the Campaign for Safer Cell Phones, and the Get Wired Action Program in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to serve as a model for communities across the nation and around the globe.
The EHT campaign provides access to a toolbox of free downloadable materials such as “safety cards” that list safer cell phone practices, appealing to teachers, health care professionals, parents, and students alike. The Get Wired Action Program provides a template for communities across the nation and around the world, from Montana to France and Israel, where the dangers of cell phone irradiation are of growing concern.
“Young people today are growing up in a sea of microwave radiation from cell phones and need to know the simple ways they can lower exposures,” Dr. Davis said.
Underscoring Dr. Davis’s call for prudent cell phone safety education, national media attention focused recently on a new Journal of the American Medical Association study showing that cell phone radiation excites the brain. Led by psychiatrist Nora D. Volkow, director of the National Institute of Drug Abuse, a research team found that just 50 minutes of cell phone radiation significantly affected brain function and metabolism of glucose—the brain’s main fuel—in those parts of the brain that received the most cell phone radiation.
“Combined with other investigations, the current study demonstrates that cell phone radiation changes what happens inside the brain,” Dr. Davis said. “Tumors are just the tip of the iceberg, but their development is preceded by years of other biological perturbations that have profound medical relevance—and this study confirms that significant biological changes occur after relatively brief exposures such as those that take place daily with the world’s five billion cell phones.”
Dr. Davis advised that this new work, combined with previous studies carried out over the past three decades and documented in Disconnect, reinforces the need for revamping current approaches to cell phone safety, and strengthens the need for a major research program on cell phones and health, overhauling approaches to setting standards, and putting warnings on cell phones.
EHT is working with experts and governments across U.S. cities and states, and around the globe, to encourage a major independent research program on cell phones and simple precautionary policies in the meantime. An unnamed industry executive applauds the new educational initiative led by the EHT. “Right now, there is no monetary incentive to educate young children and teens on cell phone safety, since all funds go into upgrading the next-generation systems. Awareness in keeping the next generation through grass roots initiatives like the Campaign for Safer Cell Phones and the Get Wired Action Program, is our only tool right now to keep the next generation safe from brain cancer risks,” says the executive who spoke anonymously.
While research is ongoing, EHT encourages simple precautions to reduce microwave radiation to the brain and body, precautions endorsed by a number of governments and experts around the world. Phones should be used with headsets or speakerphones and not kept directly on the body, and children should take special care not to have direct exposures, EHT advises.
Simple, low-cost measures—such as the use of text messages, hands-free kits and/or the loudspeaker mode of the phone—could substantially reduce exposure to the brain from mobile phones.
“To conclude that cell phones are safe misreads the science and misleads people,” Dr. Davis cautions. “Therefore, until deﬁnitive scientiﬁc answers are available, the adoption of such precautions, particularly among young people, is advisable.”
Dr. Davis’s talk is sponsored by Teach Environmental Awareness for Community Health (for more information email: email@example.com).
For more information on Dr. Davis’s book Disconnect, please visit www.disconnectbook.com.
For more information about the Campaign for Safer Cell Phones and the Get Wired Action Program, please contact Jeanne Ball at (307) 690-3041 firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Environmental Health Trust
Environmental Health Trust (EHT) educates individuals, health professionals and communities about controllable environmental health risks and policy changes needed to reduce those risks. Current multi-media projects include: local and national campaigns to ban smoking and asbestos; working with international physician and worker safety groups to warn about the risks of inappropriate use of diagnostic radiation and cell phones, exploring what factors lie behind puzzlingly high rates of fibroid tumors, breast cancer and endometriosis in young African American women, and building environmental wellness programs in Wyoming and Pennsylvania to address the environmental impacts of energy development, the built environment and radon. EHT was created with the goal of promoting health and preventing disease one person, one community and one nation at a time. Capitalizing on growing public interest in Dr. Devra Lee Davis’s popular books, When Smoke Ran Like Water, a National Book Award Finalist, and The Secret History of the War on Cancer, and recent documentary films, the foundation’s website will become the go to place for clear, science-based information to prevent environmentally based disease and promote health, and will have portals for the general public, children, and health professionals. For more information about getting involved in the numerous special projects spearheaded by the EHT, please log on to www.ehtrust.org.