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Electromagnetic Fields


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EMF Contents:

CSI NUMBERS
DEFINITION
CONSIDERATIONS
COMMERCIAL STATUS
IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES
GUIDELINES

RESOURCES


CSI NUMBER


DEFINITION:

Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are created by electric power charges. There are two types of fields - electric fields which result from the strength (voltage) of the charge and magnetic fields which result from the motion (amperage) of the charge.


CONSIDERATIONS:

There is considerable scientific inquiry into possible health impacts from electromagnetic fields. There are several studies indicating that health risks exist, but little agreement as to why. A draft study by the EPA, which reviewed 50 epidemiological studies and hundreds of biological studies acknowledge that low level electromagnetic fields may increase the risk of cancer. The study indicated the need for more research into understanding the risk components and exposure levels.

The recommended course of action at present is "prudent avoidance." This means it's a good idea to pursue no-cost or minimal-cost strategies that reduce exposure to EMF's. Major investment in minimization strategies is not considered "prudent," due to the lack of adequate understanding of what is or is not safe.

Electromagnetic fields diminish quite rapidly with distance from the source (the inverse square of the distance). Thus, a primary strategy is to increase the distance between sources of EMF's and parts of the home where people spend the most time. Reducing the sources of EMF's can also be accomplished to a limited extent.

EMF sources include electrical distribution lines and common household and occupational electrical appliances.

Commercial
Status
Implementation
Issues
technology suppliers cost financing public regulatory
EMF's Minimized
Legend
green Satisfactory
yellow Satisfactory in most conditions
red Satisfactory in Limited Conditions
black Unsatisfactory or Difficult

COMMERCIAL STATUS

This consideration will apply to EMF minimization strategies.

TECHNOLOGY:

The prudent avoidance strategies listed are basic approaches that reduce exposure to EMF's. More sophisticated approaches are not readily available.

SUPPLIERS:

Very few consultants or technicians.

COST:

These strategies are low-cost or no-cost approaches.


IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES

FINANCING:

Available.

PUBLIC ACCEPTANCE:

Few people are aware of EMF issues.

REGULATORY:

None.


GUIDELINES


  • 1.0 Guidelines to reduce EMF exposure in a home:


  • 2.0 EMF Characteristics - Electric Fields and Magnetic Fields


  • 3.0 Exposure Levels


    RESOURCES


    PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE



    COMPONENTS / MATERIALS / SYSTEMS



    GENERAL ASSISTANCE



    NET RESOURCES


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    Sustainable Building Sourcebook web version copyright Sustainable Sources 1994-2000.

    This file last updated on Tuesday, August 20, 2002

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