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Zim proposes cell radiation bill

By Alfonce Mbizwo, Harare, Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe’s Radiation Protection Authority has proposed a Bill that seeks to reduce exposure from non-ionising radiation emitted by cellphones, radio transmitters and booster stations.

RPAZ senior inspector Justice Chipuru said the agency wants to revise the Radiation Protection Act that only recognises ionising radiation to incorporate non-ionising radiation exposure.

Ionising radiation is from cosmic and gamma rays, nuclear fission and fusion, nuclear radiation from reactors and weapons, radioactive material and X-rays. “Although non-ionising radiation is of extremely low frequency, concern has been raised lately that it may have long-term effects on the public,” said Chipuru.

He said of major concern to Zimbabwe would be the use of cellphones, microwave ovens, cordless phones, radio transmission and cellphone booster stations.

He also said radar and wireless-fidelity (Wi-Fi) have the side-effect of heating body tissue and raising the temperature. Although the gadgets have been certified fit for use, different biological effects are observed for different types of non-ionising radiation, he said.

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