powerline tower

Electromagnetic Fields and Power Lines

Is there a health hazard from living near a power line?

No absolute answers can be provided, but certain general conclusions can be drawn from the existing science

There is a broad consensus in the scientific community that no casual association has been established between residential or occupational exposure to power-frequency fields, and human health hazards (including cancer). There is a broad consensus that exposure to these fields has not been, and cannot be proven to be absolutely safe. There is also a broad consensus that if there is a human health hazard, it is either very small or restricted to small subgroups; that is, that the possibility of a large and general hazard has been ruled out. I am buying a home near some electrical lines and am concerned. Should I have a test done for EMF?

EMF is all around us due to the number of electrical devices we normally have in our homes. One fact that came out as I was researching sources for this page was that there are no government limits or EMF exposure guidelines. Consumers may be wasting their money by testing as there is no way to tell whether they are good or bad. However, if your concerned go ahead and test. The testing company may be able to provide an explanation that addresses your concerns.

“Regardless of the science, the public controversy remains. This is seen in the continuing litigation over cancers that are alleged to have been caused by exposure to power-frequency fields, and by the public opposition that meets almost all attempts to site or upgrade power lines. The public concern is sustained by uneven reporting on this issue by the mass media, by the inability of scientists to guarantee that no risk exists, and by statements from scientists and government officials that more research is needed. This public concern is further encouraged by lay-oriented books that allege that there has been a conspiracy to conceal the health risks of power-frequency fields.” [L11]

Here are some links that you may find interesting. 

World Health Org EMF Site

National Institute of Health EMF page

UW Power Line and Cancer FAQ