How Cell Phones are Killing Off Honeybees
If video fails to play, go to Resonance – Beings of Frequency
(This is Part II of a two part film review of the 2012 documentary by British filmmaker James Russell. The first described the link between cell phone technology and the growing cancer epidemic.)
Honey Bees and Migratory Birds
Colony collapse disorder (CCD) is a phenomenon in which previously healthy worker bees from a beehive or bee colony simply vanish. First recognized in 2006, it represents a true agricultural emergency, as all food production depends, either directly or indirectly, on insect pollinators. There has been a lot of debate about the cause, with many environmentalists blaming the high levels of insecticide that have accumulated in the ecosystem. The film presents some fascinating research about the magnetite-containing cells honeybees use to navigate the earth’s magnetic fields in finding their way to and from the hive. Other research shows that direct exposure to microwave radiation disrupts their ability to detect these fields. In other words, bees abandon their hives because they can’t find their way back.
Shore birds and songbirds also use the earth’s magnetic fields to migrate vast distances, via a slightly different mechanism involving cryptochromes. These are magnetically sensitive cells found in all plants, animals and human beings. In humans, the cryptochromes in the pineal gland control melatonin production. Ornithologists are extremely alarmed at the sudden rate of decline of numerous populations of songbirds and shorebirds that migrate. The scientists in the film believe, that as with honeybees, excessive microwave smog interferes with their ability to use the earth’s magnetic fields to navigate.
A Public Health Problem of Mammoth Proportions
As Resonance – Beings of Frequency points out, there are currently four billion mobile phone users and five million cell phone masts globally. Because this technology is in wide use on all seven continents, there is really nowhere people can go to escape it. In Sweden, patients diagnosed with electrosensitivy syndrome can get government support in insulating their homes against EMR (with tinfoil no less). As yet they are the only country in the world to recognize the condition and subsidize its management.
The filmmakers acknowledge that the sheer magnitude of the problem, given numerous other sources of EMR pollution (such as high tension power lines), means there is no easy or immediate way to reduce or eliminate this major environmental carcinogen. Among other potential remedies, they make a strong case for establishing a truly independent international body to monitor microwave-related health risks, unlike the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection. At present the ICNIRP is totally dominated and controlled by the telecommunications industry. As they point out, a truly independent body would issue safe Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) levels appropriate for children, who generally begin using cell phones at age eight. ICNIRP was forced to adopt maximum SAR levels after the World Health Organization came out with research linking cell phones and brain tumors. Skull thickness is very important in establishing a safe SAR, as the skull protects the brain from microwaves produced by cell phones. Although children have much thinner skulls, for some bizarre reason has calculated SAR based on the average skull thickness of US military recruits.
The scientists in the film also urge telecommunication companies to be more forthcoming with their own research linking microwave exposure to cancer and other health problems. Although imminent reduction in the numbers of cell phones and cell phone masts is highly unlikely, there is a potential for slowing the growth of this technology. Moreover making the information publicly available allows individuals to make informed choices about limiting their exposure.