Photo via Shutterstock
Citing high costs and extreme resistance from the mobile phone industry, San Francisco has dropped a law that would have required a radiation warning label to be placed on all new mobile phones sold within the city limits. On Tuesday, the city Board of Supervisors voted to settle a lawsuit with the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association by accepting a permanent injunction against the right-to-know cell phone ordinance. However, the city was quick to point out that legal fees prompted the action, and that fears about the health risks posed by phone radiation still exist.
For the most part, warnings about the radiation emanating from your phone, laptop, and other common electronics has been relegated to the world of health fanatics and conspiracy theorists, but just because you’re not hearing about it on the daily news doesn’t mean there isn’t a real threat.
San Francisco’s 2011 ordinance called for warnings that cellular phones, including smartphone devices, emit potentially cancer-causing radiation, reports Reuters. The statute, which a judge blocked before it took effect, also would have required retailers of the devices to post notices stating that World Health Organization cancer experts have deemed mobile phones “possibly carcinogenic.” The mobile phone industry, including Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Samsung and Apple, claimed that there was no evidence of harm from phones and successfully argued in court that the law violated its free-speech rights (because, as you know, corporations are people with constitutional rights).
Despite the repeated dismissal of scientific studies that claim to link heavy cell phone use with negative effects, those who supported the labeling law argue that there has been a rise in the number of brain tumours in recent decades that correlates with increased phone use.