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Germany To Study Mobile Phone Radiation
September 24, 2003

Germany's government said Thursday it would pay half the cost of a study into whether radiation from mobile phones and base-station antennas poses a risk to human health.

The phone industry had promised to pay another EUR 8.5 million, the other half, said Simone Probst, parliamentary state secretary in the Environment Ministry in Berlin. The research project will run till 2005.

Germany's federal commission on radiation risks did a study two years ago that concluded there was no health danger.

However there have been persistent questions about the risk to children who are heavy phone users. Some studies suggest long periods of radio-frequency radiation at the ear may increase the risk of brain cancer.

Safety guidelines require base-station antennas to be at least 10 metres from where people live, work or walk past, and past US studies have indicated this distance is safe.

A German court recently ruled that a base station posed a "psychological" risk to a nervous Hamburg woman resident. The phone industry is currently appealing.