EU actions

EU action related to electromagnetic fields is based on Council Recommendation (1999/519/EC) of 12 July 1999 on the limitation of the exposure of the general public to electromagnetic fields (0 Hz- 300 GHz)pdf.

This recommendation proposes a set of basic restrictions and reference levels. It also provides guidance to the Member States, creates a basis for EU products safety legislation and invites the Commission to keep the possible health effects of EMF under review.

EU legislative measures

The Recommendation serves as a reference for EU rules in other areas:

EU monitoring on potential health effects

The Commission is monitoring new developments in research into the potential health effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF).

Upon request of the Commission, the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) has produced five opinions to date so as to periodically review the scientific evidence on the health effects of the exposure to electromagnetic fields.

These scientific opinions have not led to a scientific rationale justifying a revision of the exposure limits (basic restrictions and reference levels) of Council Recommendation 1999/519/ECpdf(189 KB). However, they acknowledge that basic data for evaluating some risks is still limited, especially for long-term, low-level exposure, justifying the need for more research.

The latest SCENIHR Opinion, based on more than 700 studies, mostly carried after 2009, is now available.

The Commission has also prepared plain language versions for non-specialists, available in 4 languages, of several opinions of the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR), including EMF.

Actions of the European Parliament

The European Parliament has produced resolutions on EMF and sends written questions to the Commission on a regular basis.

Actions of the European Economic and Social Committee

The European Economic and Social Committee (a consultative body of the European Union) recently produced an own-initiative Opinion on electromagnetic hypersensitivity.

Stakeholder Dialogue Group

In 2011, the Stakeholder Dialogue Group on EMF met four times to identify the main issues for the various stakeholders and to formulate recommendations on the management of these issues.

The last Stakeholder Dialogue Group met in 2014 in Athens at the Workshop on electromagnetic fields (EMF) and health effects: From science to policy and public awareness.
For more information on the issues, stakeholders and recommendations, see the minutes of the meeting.