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Public Health (06-03-2009)

Report of the workshop on Electro Magnetic Fields (EMF) and Health: Science and Policy to address public concerns

On February 11 and 12, 2009, the European Commission held a workshop in Brussels on Electromagnetic fields and Health: Science and Policy to Address Public Concerns. The workshop brought  together over 180 of the main stakeholders interested in the health effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF) from the EU, US, Japan and Israel. The workshop played an important role in contributing towards the continuing EU policy process regarding electromagnetic fields.
The workshop generated debate and discussion between groups that call for the application of the Precautionary Principle due to the remaining scientific uncertainty on the health effects of EMF, and other groups, such as, the EU Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) that conclude that there is no scientific basis for revising the current levels of precaution embedded in the EU regulatory framework on EMF.
The workshop recognised and highlighted the importance of transparency, trust and sound scientific assessment in policy making. One conclusion of the workshop was, that expert bodies must adhere to strict criteria regarding transparency, conflicts of interest and expertise in order to maximize the usability of their conclusions for policy making. The workshop called for more research on the potential health effects of electromagnetic fields in order to close the remaining gaps in data.
The workshop programme, presentations and conclusions are available online at:
http://ec.europa.eu/health/ph_risk/ev_20090211_en.htm