Thursday, 24 October 2013

Questions (173)

John Halligan

Question:

173. Deputy John Halligan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to any research having been carried out in Ireland or the EU in relation to the impact pylons have on a person's health; his views on whether these pylons may trigger cancer cells to develop; if the World Health Organisation have made any assessment on the health effects of pylons to persons living within close proximity to these pylons; his views on whether the erection of pylons will have a detrimental effect on those living in the surrounding areas; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [45477/13]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

The issue of the potential health effects of electromagnetic fields was the subject of an Expert Group Report commissioned by the Government and published in March 2007. This Report, entitled Health Effects of Electromagnetic Fields , is available for download on my Department's website ( www.environ.ie). The Expert Group reported that the majority scientific opinion was that no adverse short or long-term effects have been demonstrated from exposure to electromagnetic fields at levels below the limits recommended by the International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP).

A substantial volume of research on this issue is being carried out internationally by regulatory bodies with responsibilities for monitoring the health effects of electromagnetic fields. The findings of this research are being monitored by the World Health Organisation's (WHO) EMF Project; it is expected that a report will issue in 2014. My Department will continue to monitor this and other scientific evidence as it is made available, and will consider any policy implications in this context.