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Parliamentary questions
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6 September 2018
E-003975/2018(ASW)
Answer given by Mr Andriukaitis on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-003975/2018

1. As the Commission pointed out in its replies to written questions E-001797/2018 and E-001837/2018, the Commission’s Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) has a standing mandate to provide an independent update of the scientific evidence available, including the assessment of health risks that may be associated with exposure. The Committee has already produced five relevant opinions.

These opinions have not provided any scientific justification to revise the limits set by Council Recommendation 1999/519/EC(1) on the exposure of the general public to electromagnetic fields. These limits are based on guidance(2) issued by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP)(3). The ICNIRP is currently reviewing its guidelines and presenting them for public consultation(4). The Commission is looking forward to the conclusions. The SCHEER may reassess the situation depending on the outcome of this review.

2. It would not be timely to undertake such a study before the results the ICNIRP’s review of its guidelines have become available.

3. Under Article 168 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, the primary responsibility for protecting the public from potential harmful effects of electromagnetic fields remains with the Member States, including the choice of measures to be adopted based on age and health status.

The Commission also notes that the European Electronic Communications Code, recently agreed by the co-legislators, will require Member States to pursue consistency and predictability throughout the Union regarding the way the use of radio spectrum is authorised in protecting public health.

(1)Council Recommendation 1999/519/EC of 12 July 1999 on the limitation of exposure of the general public to electromagnetic fields (0 Hz to 300 GHz), OJ L 199, 30.7.1999, p.59
(2)https://www.icnirp.org/cms/upload/publications/ICNIRPemfgdl.pdf
(3)https://www.icnirp.org/
(4)https://www.emf-portal.org/en/news/post/702

Last updated: 7 September 2018Legal notice