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Ignorance is Bliss

I always get a chuckle when the “mums-against-masts” brigade end up in the papers as some kind of local heroes. Totally oblivious to any source of scientific common sense, the protesters line up to stop yet another mast being erected, hence ensuring that the Northeast of England remains a communication backwater (rural Northumberland being a prime example – signals on the A69 from Hexham to Carlisle are almost unusable for any meaningful conversation (hands-free of course). If only these knowledge-free people could see phone signals visually, they’d realise they are barking up entirely the wrong tree.  Almost all kids today (and most adults) have mobile phones and they take them wherever they go (ask any teacher). Whether on silent or not, these phones are TRANSMITTERS, just like the masts, but closer. The signals they put out are small,  but not insignificant in comparison to masts, but then it’s not all about signal strength – distance is important too. 

Given a strong base signal, mobiles put out a weak signal to communicate back to the base – and they do this regularly. Given a distant base, they have to put out a stronger signal (anyone notice how quickly phone batteries go down in weak signal areas?). That means that by ensuring there are as few base stations as possible (economics and misguided protesters have ensured that in large parts of Northumberland, mobile phone communication is unreliable, just where it is needed the most), the phone which sit millimetres away from children’s skin, regularly transmit with the highest possible power, all day, every day. Even those who don’t have mobile phones are probably sitting inches away from someone who does and who’s phone is supplying a regular, close-proximity supply of radiated energy. In operation mobile phone transmitting strength drops to almost nothing if the base station is local, with a poor connection it can be as high as 2 watts, which might not sound a lot but your readers should read this next sentence over and over till it sinks in: The signals from base stations are but a TINY fraction of those received by users holding their own phone within millimetres of their ear!!

Just like the windmill and nuclear protesters, these people will not stop the march of technology, they never do, they will merely succeed in ensuring that we have the worst possible services thanks to lack of thought and lack of basic knowledge.

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