Overhead Power Lines Linked “Beyond Reasonable Doubt” to Childhood and Adult Leukemia
Dr. Denis Henshaw, retired and world-renowned professor of human radiation effects at the University of Bristol, U.K., recently told a public gathering of about 400 people in Trim, County Meath, Ireland that overhead high voltage power lines are strongly linked with leukemia (Irish Times). Specifically, he said high voltage cables are linked “beyond reasonable doubt” to childhood leukemia, adult leukemia and adult brain tumours. He also said there is “very strong evidence” to link high voltage power lines with Alzheimer’s disease and increased risk of miscarriage. Dr. Henshaw is a scientific director of the charity Children with Cancer U.K.
Professor Henshaw said there was only a one in a million chance that electromagnetic fields (EMFs) were not associated with adult leukemia. He said the link “passes any criteria in science for proof”.
Dr. Henshaw went on to state that a study carried out in the U.K. into overground cables carried by pylons (towers) concluded the costs of undergrounding more than matched the health costs associated with overhead lines. He said all living creatures are affected by EMFs and the evidence of adverse effects on human health has increased in recent years. “If they are buried, you are strongly mitigating against these emissions and the fields associated with power lines”, he said. “From a health perspective, and only from a health perspective, my advice is to avoid the exposure and bury them in populated areas.”
Dr. Henshaw has also conducted research on the health risks associated with the overhead high voltage power line corona effect. A risk analysis conducted by Dr. Henshaw in 2002 suggested that 200 to 400 excess cases of lung cancer mortality and 2,000 to 3,000 excess cases of cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses and aggravated asthma and allergies may occur annually among the 2.7 million people living within 400m of high voltage power lines in the U.K.