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Is 5G hazardous for human beings and the environment

5G provides unparalleled speeds and bandwidth, but what are the consequences of this nascent technology? 

The release of 5G is going ahead at a breakneck pace in several regions of the planet. However, as the rollout gains momentum, so have the number of analysts and scientists who have vocalized their worries that 5G might be deleterious to humans and our planet’s environment. 

There exist moratoriums and appeals backed by seasoned scientists and medical practitioners with regards to the rollout of 5G technologies. But do any of these accusations of 5G being deleterious to society at large hold any weight? In this AICoreSpot blog, we will be exploring this important issue in significant detail. 

Let’s have a quick glance and first understand what 5G technology is and how it is different from the present dominating standard – 4G. This will enable us to gain insight on why 5G implementation is more complex than it appears at first sight. 

  1. 5G is really, really quick 

Speed plays a vital part in our mobile internet experiences. If you desire to go about streaming in HD quality, a 3G connection provided you with adequate speeds, while on the other hand, 4G can quite easily stream 1080p content, with a decent enough plan. 

Theoretically, 5G can provide 1000-fold the speed capabilities of 4G. Basically, with good coverage, streaming of 4K videos on your smartphone will be a breeze, and you can possess a bandwidth of 100gbps. 

  1. 5G will provide minimized interference 

5G leverages frequencies that are not currently overpopulated with existing gadgets. This cannot be stated for 4G and 3G, as they leverage the same spectrum, resulting in interference or noise.  

5G steers clear of this situation by leveraging a frequency that stays untapped, at present. This will enable in obtaining improved speeds, in addition to reduced distortion and noise. 

Also, in contrast with 4G towers, which project signals in 360-degrees, 5G infrastructure is extremely directional. This also has the outcome of reduced interference with other signals that are prevalent in the region. 

  1. 5G reduces latency considerably 

Latency is the delays in time incurred by the signal that traverses from an origin device to the targeted machine. While leveraging 5G, we can witness nearly real-time response times in-between devices, which has been advertised at 1-millisecond latency, while 4G standards provide 50 milliseconds. 

This provides several benefits to various disparate industries, such as healthcare, self-driving vehicles, and aviation, where fast responses is of critical importance. In healthcare, it’s a matter of life or death. 5G provides much reduced latency than 4G, but, the precise values in real-world settings can only be quantified after the rollout. 

  1. 5G has a considerably wider bandwidth 

5G has increased bandwidth in comparison to 4G, facilitating you to get connected to an increased number of gadgets, devices, and machines to a singular net port – such as a router. What this implies is that there should exist no problems with regards to overloads that typically reveal themselves when you get connected with a plethora of web-hungry devices to one router. 

This is bound to be very beneficial for smart homes, as it enables hosting of several devices that all require access to the web from one router. 

Will 5G incite a revolution in our ways of communication? 

Although 5G boasts of an incredible specification list, it is, at the end of the day, an incremental evolution over 4G. We will experience improved speeds and all that we do on the internet will have access to that increase in speed. 

As we mentioned previously, you can get an increased number of devices connected to your 5G home network if you intend to do away with wired connectivity. 

Mobile phones are undisputedly the main medium through which most of us get online. But, the advantages of 5G connectivity can be experienced on your smartphone only if it is compatible.  

5G handsets are not yet as widespread as 4G handsets, as this is a considerably nascent technology. Additionally, integrating 5G makes production expenditures higher when contrasted with 4G production. 

Why 5G is common sense for smart cities 

The reduced interference aspect of 5G implies that it can furnish good reception to end-users even when the spectrum is clogged with frequencies. This also relates to the several devices that are leveraged within smart cities. 

5G will facilitate seamless communications between these gadgets while offering incredibly reduced latency levels.  

5G telecommunications is poised to become the platform of choice for sensors and other smart tools leveraged in the development of smart cities. As cities increase in size and are increasingly filled with technologies, there will be considerable requirements for communication platform that will facilitate the communication of signals from point A in the city to point B in a swift manner – which is translated to high-speed internet with reduced latency. 

This will facilitate improved communications, risk administration, emergency response, and resource administration. 

Is 5G deleterious to us? 

Ever since organizations began the rollout of 5G, the public has received it in a somewhat mellow fashion, and that would be downplaying it. There have been several accusations targeted at proponents of 5G technologies with regards to how safe it is, which includes a report that a 5G network test resulted in the death of hundreds of birds in the Netherlands. 

But the news article was later revealed to be fake news. 

Putting aside hoaxes such as these, are there any complications surrounding the implementation of 5G that needs to be spoken about further? 

The rationale behind why several detractors are against 5G is owing to the fact that 5G leverages really high frequencies (millimetre-scale) waves that rest between 30Ghz to 300GHz.  

Owing to these high-frequency traits, the waves don’t traverse protracted distances like 4G waves do. Therefore, antennas must be put up in close proximity to the other to furnish clear 5G reception.  

This is not a matter of just a few more antennas, but many more, considerably more. Potentially as much as one antenna for each 100 to 200 metre distance. 

These are not full-fledged mobile towers that we are referring to, but low-profile antennae that will occupy just a fraction of the room taken up by a conventional cell tower. But the actual issue is, do these technologies present health risks and environmental complications? 

There are two disparate and unique opinions with regards to this matter. Wireless organizations, and even state-run websites like those of the EPA and CDC, have collaborated to ease the worries of the broader public that the radiation emitted by 5G networks is totally safe and within acceptable levels. The Federal Communication Commission has reiterated that the radio frequency radiation (RFR) exposure limitations instated in the late 1990s still hold relevance. 

Along with other parties, have put forth the argument that the really short range, and short-wavelength radiation leveraged is non-ionizing. This implies that it does not possess adequate energy to remove electrons from atoms. (Therefore, producing ions) 

But other analyses have illustrated that there can be deleterious biological or health impacts from exposing oneself to nonionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF). 

Referencing a large mass of research on the dangers of exposure to EMF, more than 240 researchers who in collaboration, have put out > 2000 peer reviewed research papers on the impact of EMF, have made an appeal to the UN for immediate action to minimize EMF exposure emitted from sources of wireless origin. These researchers also sent in a letter to the FCC, requesting the body to evaluate health hazards and environmental complications prior to the rapid deployment of 5G wireless infrastructure. 

Yet others have highlighted that the FCC’s RFR exposure limitations consider the frequencies of the carrier waves, but forsake the signalling attributes of the RFR. Traits of the signal, like pulsing and polarization, combined with the length of exposure, may amplify the effects of the exposure. 

The WHO’s (World Health Organization) International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has also categorized RFR as “potentially cancer causing to humans” and a research carried out by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) discovered overt evidence that being exposed to cell phone RFR escalated cancer risks and caused damage to rat DNA and also mice. 

A letter authored by Dr. Martin Pall, a biochem professor at the Washington State University, spoke about the grave biological and health impacts that are an outcome of 5G, specifying that the present FCC guidelines are not adequate, redundant, and biased towards the telecom industry. 

Pall also holds the belief that there may be considerable longer-term adverse effects following the implementing of 5G, like blindness, loss of auditory capacities, cancers of the skin, impotence, and thyroid complications. 

Not shockingly, the FCC’s view on 5G differs and they are ensuring that the technologies are going to be implemented at the earliest opportunity. Over laying out robust and stringent guidelines, the agency’s efforts are being expended towards creating legislation that will stop local governance from limiting the deployment of 5G. 

Aside from research concerned with 5G, there are various other research pieces that demonstrate evidence of the deleterious impact of low-intensity, really high electromagnetic radiation on wildlife. Regardless of the scenario, most analysts concur that an open, frank, and unbiased inquest is required on the topic. 

What is the answer to 5G’s negative impact, if there is one? 

5G is definitely the way forward, and we are going to witness lightning quick internet speeds on our smartphones in the not too far off future. The enhancement in connectivity is definitely bounds to enhance our lives, but probably at the cost of our own health in the long term. 

This sophisticated, but untested technology is on the horizon, and there is not a lot we can do to prevent its widespread adoption. But one thing we should all endeavour to do is comprehend EMF better and safeguard ourselves through proper choosing of products. 

We should restrict our EMF exposure through restricted utilization of smartphones and other smart gadgets. If feasible, avoid utilizing 5G phones and gadgets, or leverage radiation detectors to identify if you’re in close proximity to high levels of EMFs.  

If you are really concerned about the impact of 5G, you can get involved in petitions intended to halt or delay the implementation of the 5G wireless network till the time a robust framework and guidelines surrounding health risks and environmental impact are readied. Prior to making our residences, organizations, and cities ‘smart’, it’s critical to take ‘smart’ decisions when implementing this nascent technology. 

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