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Regulating the risks of mobile phone base stations: a comparative study in 5 countries

Abstract : This addressed the problem of regulating uncertain risks in the scientific context (‘known unknowns’ and ‘unknown unknowns’) and social (including economic and political) context. A comparative study of mobile phone base station deployment was conducted in 5 European countries- France, UK, Belgium, Switzerland and Spain. The countries have not taken similar decisions in regard RF exposure and their regulatory measures have not eliminated controversy. It was found that: - The countries did not share a similar assessment of base station risks - In most countries an intermediate level of government exerted pressure on the central government - Mobile phone operators exerted pressure on the central government. These elements explained the differences in regulatory measures but two other issues had an effect (inflaming or calming) – local charters to apply stricter rules and the ability to take matters to court. In the end it is action and interaction between five stakeholders that hold the key, namely central government, scientific experts, operators, local authorities and the courts. In countries where controversy is greatest there is also the greatest instability and inconsistency between the five agents. Four short presentations that address policy options based on the concept of precaution were outlined, showing the diversity of measures that are being taken around the world.
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Danielle Salomon, Olivier Borraz. Regulating the risks of mobile phone base stations: a comparative study in 5 countries. Michael Repacholi; Emilie Van Deventer; Paolo Ravazzani. Base stations and wireless networks: exposures and health consequences, Organisation mondiale de la Santé, pp.113 - 126, 2007. ⟨hal-02344650⟩



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