Safety Code 6 is created by Health Canada. Its purpose is to establish safety limits for human exposure to radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic energy in the frequency range from 3 kHz to 300 GHz. This is the energy given off all wireless electronic devices including, but not limited to, cell and portable phones, baby monitors, smart meters, wireless appliances, Wi-Fi and cell phone towers.

These guidelines may also be adopted by the provinces, industry or other interested parties

Safety Code 6 was originally created in the 1970’s for the protection of federal employees and visitors to federal buildings

  • It has been expanded to include Wi-Fi, smart phones, smart meters and cell phone towers
  • It has not had any major revisions in the last 30 years
  • Created in the 1970’s for federal employees and visitors to federal facilities
    • Expanded to include Wi-Fi, smart phones and cell phone towers and antennae
    • Without a major update in the last 30+ years
  • No additional safety allowance for children, pregnant women or sensitive individuals
  • Statement acknowledging sensitive individuals was removed from the 2009 update. Health Canada has no explanation why
  • Do not consider the multi-hour, multi-day exposure of today; nor the cumulative effects from multiple devices
  • China, Russia, Italy and Switzerland have exposure limits 100 times safer than Canada;
  • Our track record in North America is not stellar:
    • Tobacco, asbestos, BPA, thalidomide, DDT and urea formaldehyde insulation

The National Toxicology Program released preliminary findings on May 27, 2016 of its $25 million study that involved over 2500 rodents. http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2016/05/26/055699

Some key points about why this study is being labeled a landmark study:

  • These are the largest, most complex studies ever conducted by the NTP.
  • For the studies, rats and mice were exposed to frequencies and modulations currently used in cellular communications in the United States. The rodents were exposed for 10-minute on, 10-minute off increments, totaling just over 9 hours a day from before birth through 2 years of age.
  • Dr. Ronald Melnick, PhD, former lead scientist on the NTP study of RFR; Retired Senior Scientist with NTP/NIEHS states “Based on this new information, regulatory agencies should make strong recommendations for consumers to take precautionary measures and avoid close contact with their cell phones, and especially avoid use of cell phones by children. Also, cell phone companies need to provide newer devices with much reduced emissions.”
  • Dr. Melnick continues “This study should put an end to those who doubt the capacity of non-thermal levels of wireless radiation to cause biological effects including cancer. The study results clearly show that cell phone radiation can cause adverse health effects. The counter argument has no validity.” http://ehtrust.org/cell-phone-radiofrequency-radiation-study/
    NTP found incidences of tumors in the brains and hearts of male rats, but not in female rats.
  • It is not uncommon for gender differences to occur in environmental exposure studies by the NTP.
  • Some of the rats had glioma—a tumor of the glial cells in the brain—or schwannoma of the heart. Both types of cancer are relatively rare, but are usually lethal.
  • The complete results from all the rat and mice studies will be available for peer review and public comment by the end of 2017.

Dr. Devra Davis, invited expert for the HESA 2015 Report on Safety Code 6, states “This research shows serious adverse effects without heating tissue. The study was carefully designed to ensure that the body temperature of the exposed rats increased less than 1ºC. Therefore, it substantiates the scientific understanding that heating is NOT the only mechanism by which this radiation could harm health.” http://ehtrust.org/cell-phone-radiofrequency-radiation-study/

In a Scientific American article, Dr. Christopher Portier, a retired head of the NTP who helped launch the study and still sometimes works for the federal government as a consultant scientist, states “Based on these findings, this is not just an associated finding—but that the relationship between radiation exposure and cancer is clear. “I would call it a causative study, absolutely. They controlled everything in the study. It’s [the cancer] because of the exposure.”” http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/major-cell-phone-radiation-study-reignites-cancer-questions/

A Consumer Reports article discusses why this study is so important. It not only supports other studies from Sweden and France that showed a link between cell phone use and cancer in humans, it was specifically designed to simulate the exposures of cell phone users, and all of the important parameters were tightly controlled and carefully monitored. The study involved more than 2,500 rodents, exposed to the same type of radiation found in cell phones, at the same frequencies, for nine hours every day, for two years. http://www.consumerreports.org/cell-phones/government-to-announce-results-of-study-on-cell-phones-and-cancer-today/

As in many major scientific studies, there are opinions and counter opinions about its relevance. An analysis, prepared by Joel M. Moskowitz, Ph.D., Director, Center for Family & Community Health, School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley responds to arguments intended to dismiss this important research. Dr. Moslowitz’s analysis can be found here. http://www.saferemr.com/2016/05/national-toxicology-progam-finds-cell.html

Mr. Andrew Adams, Health Canada: In testimony before the Parliamentary Health Committee admitted there are studies that show harm below Safety Code 6. (1)

Health Canada document “determined that 36 studies were of “sufficient quality for inclusion in the Risk Assessment” in the following categories:”

  • Cancer is linked in 6 studies,
  • Brain/nervous system impacts in 13,
  • Biochemical disruption in 16 and
  • Development and/or learning behaviour impacts in 7. (2)

All requests for a public disclosure of the Weight of Evidence criteria used to dismiss these studies have been ignored by Health Canada.

China, Russia, Italy and Switzerland have wireless radiation safety limits 100 times safer than Canada. (3)

40% of the world’s population lives in countries with codes safer than Canada.

Industry Canada does not measure for the multi-hour, multi-day exposure of today’s environment; nor the cumulative effects from multiple devices

Manufacturers have safety warnings that are buried in cell phones and tablets (4)

Over 50 Canadian MD’s and international scientists signed declarations stating that the current levels of Safety Code 6 do not protect Canadians (5), (6)

January 29, 2015 France passed the following articles into law: (7)

  • A ban on the use of Wi-Fi in day care centres and nurseries for children under three years of age
  • Wi-Fi must be deactivated when not in active use for digital educational activities in primary schools with Wi-Fi already in place,
  • For primary schools without Wi-Fi, a consultation process must be followed.
    (Primary schools include pre-school, (ages 2 to 6) and elementary school, (ages 6 to 11))
  • All advertisements promoting cell phones must demonstrate a device to limit the exposure of the head to radiofrequencies emitted by the cellular phones. ( eg. ear buds or speaker mode)
  • A campaign of “awareness and information on the responsible and rational use of mobile devices” will be conducted.

February 15, 2015. Taiwanese lawmakers passed new legislation in which: (8)

  • Parents face fines if they allow children under the age of two to use tablets and smartphones
  • Youth under 18 years of age are allowed devices for a ‘reasonable length of time’

March, 2014. It is illegal to market cell phones to children less than seven years of age in Belgium. (9)

Dr. Devra Davis, team member  Nobel Prize with Al Gore re climate change (10)

  • Damaged and reduced sperm (11), (12)
  • ADHD-like symptoms in offspring when pregnant mice exposed to cell phones (13)
  • Co-author “The underestimation of cell phone radiation, especially in children” (14)

Dr. Anthony Miller, visiting senior scientist World Health Org., U. of Toronto (15)

  • Links to brain cancer referencing Swedish and French studies (16),(17), (18)
  • Overview of recent information re breast cancer (19)

Dr. Riina Bray, Women’s College Hospital, Dr. Magda Havas, Trent Univ.  (20), (21)

  • Electrosensitivity can affect 3% of the population in the short term and up to 30% in the long term (22)

Dr. Martin Blank Columbia University (23)

  • Proof of DNA damage (24), (25)

Dr. Martha Herbert Ph.D., M.D.  Harvard Medical School (26)

  • Links to autism (27), (28)

Dr. Meg Sears, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute (29)

  • Health Canada’s recent review of Safety Code 6 fails all major criteria for the evaluation of scientific evidence based on international best practices (30)

Children are not “little adults”; their skulls are thinner

The tissues of a child’s head, including the bone marrow and brain absorb significantly more energy than those in an adult head. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18562780

Radiation from a cell phone which penetrated 10% of an adult head, would affect 70% of the brain of a five year old. (32)

The Canadian Teachers’ Federation states: “Teachers and school communities have not been informed regarding the implementation of Wi-Fi and any inherent potential hazards. In the absence of a definitive statement regarding the safety of Wi­ Fi that addresses concerns raised through social and regular media, teachers are rightly concerned for their personal safety and the safety of the children in their care.” (33)

Safety Code 6 guidelines are based on computer models for heating, not specific human measurements of biochemical changes. (34)

The RSC Expert Panel was conflicted; half of the panel members have strong financial ties to industry. (35)

The original panel chair resigned only after the CMAJ reported an undisclosed conflict of interest. (36)

The RSC invited Dr. Anthony Miller and Dr. Martin Blank as peer reviewers of the report. Their input challenging the report results was ignored.  (37)

(1)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7892702&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2  at time 1540
(3) http://buildingbiology.ca/media/pdf/rf_exposure_limits_cell_antennas.pdf
(4) https://www.c4st.org/PMB
(5) https://www.c4st.org/images/documents/hc-resolutions/medical-doctors-submission-to-health-canada-english.pdf
(6) https://www.c4st.org/images/documents/hc-resolutions/scientific-declaration-to-health-canada-english.pdf
(7) http://www.complianceandrisks.com/france-publishes-law-on-electromagnetic-waves/
(8) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2929530/Does-toddler-play-iPad-Taiwan-makes-ILLEGAL-parents-let-children-two-use-electronic-gadgets-18s-limit-use-reasonable-lengths.html
(9) expatica.com/be/news/belgian-news/TMag-Mobile-phones-to-be-banned-for-children_259994.html.
(10)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7945128&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2 at time 1640
(11) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15910543
(12) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22348902
(13) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22428084
(14) http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2213879X14000583
(15)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7936469&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2 at time 1535
(16) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23261330
(17) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4211006/
(18) http://oem.bmj.com/content/early/2014/05/09/oemed-2013-101754
(19) http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crim/2013/354682/
(20)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7945128&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2 at time 1530
(21)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7936469&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2 at time 1555
(22) https://www.c4st.org/images/documents/cell-tower-situations/Peel-DSB/American_Academy_of_Environmental_Medicine_Letter_to_PDSB.pdf
(23)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7892702&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2  at time 1656
(24) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2999986/
(25) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19268550
(26)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7945128&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2 at time 1629
(27) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24095003
(28) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24113318
(29)http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=7892702&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2  at time 1540
(30) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4080517/
(31) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18562780
(32) http://www.ece.ncsu.edu/erl/html2/papers/lazzi/1996/NCSU-ERL-LAZZI-96-03.pdf
(33) http://www.ctf-fce.ca/en/Pages/Issues/Wi-Fi-Briefing-Document.aspx
(34) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21999884
(35) http://www.cmaj.ca/content/185/11/E515.full?sid=1c87d088-0133-4029-8fdd-101ad78008c6
(36) http://www.cmaj.ca/content/185/12/E573.full?sid=1c87d088-0133-4029-8fdd-101ad78008c6
(37) http://news.nationalpost.com/health/canadian-scientists-urge-more-research-into-safety-of-wireless-technology-saying-recent-report-downgrades-cancer-risk

Relevant Documents:


Safety Code 6


Interpretation and Compliance Assessment of Health Canada’s Radiofrequency Exposure Guidelines