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French Polynesia – Policy Recommendations On Cell Phones, Wireless Radiation & Health

May 11, 2017


2016 Legislation To Protect The Public and Reduce Exposure

Legislation the country adopted in 2016 prohibits advertising of cell phones to children under 14, prohibits advertising cell phones without showing how to minimize radiation exposure to the head, prohibits wireless in nursery schools, limits wireless in primary schools and reduces exposures to workers.

Summary of the Law 2016-41 / APF December 8, 2016 on Electromagnetic Radiation

  • Prohibition of advertising that promotes the sale or use of a cell phone to children under fourteen years old. Advertising should clearly and legibly show the limiting of exposure to the head. An offender is liable to a fine not exceeding 8,900,000 F CFP.
  • Cell phones may not be marketed without an accessory that limits exposure to the head.
  • Recommendations to limit head exposure and SAR levels should be readable and intelligible.
  • Wireless is prohibited in nursery schools and spaces dedicated to “reception, rest and activities of children under three years of age.”
  • Wireless should be turned to OFF in primary school unless specifically in use for digital activities.
  • The government is implementing measurement and monitoring of levels of public exposure to electromagnetic fields throughout the country of French Polynesia.

2017 Public Awareness Campaign

French Polynesia has launched a major public awareness campaign to raise awareness about how to reduce exposure to the electromagnetic radiation from electronics, cell phones, and wireless devices as part of the country’s new law to reduce citizens’ exposures to electromagnetic radiation exposure.

The multimedia campaign of the French Polynesia Directorate-General for the Digital Economy (DGEN) includes video and graphics promoted on television, radio, and social networking platforms.

A “Best Practices Guide” provides specific recommendations to reduce electromagnetic radiation in order to “protect children and youth.”

Summary of Recommendations to Reduce Wireless Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Radiation (Best Practices Guide)

Children under 15 are advised to not use cell phones.

  • Distance the phone away from the head.
  • Make voice calls with a headset to reduce exposure to the brain.
  • Move the mobile device away from electronic implants (pacemaker, Insulin pump, neuro-stimulator, etc.). A mobile device near the implantation area may interfere with the operation of a medical device.
  • Do not call in areas of bad reception.
  • Avoid carrying your phone in your pants pocket.
  • Prefer texting SMS instead of voice calls.
  • The base of the home cordless phone emits radiation constantly, so keep it at a distance and use loudspeaker.
  • When indoors, prefer to connect to networks outside the building by using your device near a window.
  • Distance the phone away from the head after dialing, as wave emission can be the strongest at that time.
  • Avoid calling during high-speed travel (in cars or other vehicles) as the phone must emit at full-power to connect successively with different antennas to maintain the connection.
  • Place yourself at least 1.50 m from your Wi-Fi box or router, and turn it off overnight. If you are ready to part with it, opt for cable (ethernet) connections (with Wi-Fi capability turned off) or very high-speed fiber optic if possible.

Summary of French Polynesia Recommendations to Reduce ELF Electromagnetic Radiation

  • Do not charge your mobile phone near the bed, distance it as far away as possible.
  • Maximize distance from the front of the television or computer monitor.
  • Have a professional check home electrical wiring.
  • Turn off electricity where no device or appliance is in use.
  • Place the wireless baby monitor at least 2 meters (about 6.5 feet) distance from the baby and never in the crib or bed.
  • Buy a new microwave oven every five years. Always distance yourself and others at least 1 meter away from the oven and unplug the oven when not using it.
  • Distance yourself and others at least 1 to 1.5 meters (3 to 4.5 feet) away from induction stovetop or any appliance capable of generating electromagnetic waves such as your refrigerator.
  • Install the electrical panel and large electrical equipment away from rooms and living areas.
  • Turn off electrical appliances (by switching off power) when they are not in use, rather than putting them to sleep. This is also a gesture in favor of the environment and your budget.

Workplace Environment

  • Suppression or reduction of risk:

Select equipment or processes that emit less intense electromagnetic fields, taking account of the work to be carried out. Use other working methods leading to less exposure to electromagnetic fields.

  • Collective protection:

Establish technical or organizational measures to reduce the emission of electromagnetic fields (shielding, distance, locking, etc.).

  • Access control:

Places where the electromagnetic field exceeds regulatory thresholds must be marked, labeled, barred, or marked on the ground in order to limit or control access.

DGEN’s video “Electromagnetic Waves: Good Practices” visually depicts how common household electronics – such as a Wi-Fi router, video game console, and wireless baby monitor – emit microwave electromagnetic radiation like cell phone emissions. The campaign also addresses the electromagnetic radiation from electricity-powered alarm clocks and appliances.

All multimedia resources are officially provided in both French and Tahitian.

Public Education Video “Good Practices with Electromagnetic Waves”

DGEN Website on Best Practices For Electromagnetic Waves French

DGEN Website on Best Practices For Electromagnetic Wave Tahitian

Watch Public Education Video in French

Watch Public Education Video in Tahitian

Watch Public Education Video English Translated by Environmental Health Trust

Download Best Practices Brochure in French.pdf

Download Best Practices Brochure in Tahitian Te rárá ‘ume uira, nāhea e ārai.pdf  

Download the Campaign Poster in French.pdf

Download the Campaign Poster in Tahitian.pdf

Download the Law of Country 2016-41 / APF of December 8, 2016 on Electromagnetic Radiation.pdf

News Articles on French Polynesia Law on Electromagnetic Radiation

“Government puts electromagnetic waves under control” Tahiti Infos, August 3, 2017

“Electromagnetic waves: the CESC supports the precautionary principle” Tahiti Infos, July 19, 2016

“Antonio Perez: “Protection of the population and digital development must be compatible” Tahiti Infos July 5, 2016