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Electromagnetic Fields: Health Hazards

Volume 497: debated on Wednesday 14 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent advice he has received on the possible relationship between incidence of childhood leukaemia and exposure to extremely low frequency electrical and magnetic fields; and if he will make a statement. (290042)

The Department has received advice from the Stakeholder Advisory Group on Extremely Low Frequency Electromagnetic Fields (SAGE). SAGE is a group of stakeholders representing sectors engaged with electricity transmission, regulation, property valuation, academic research and public concern campaigning. The remit of SAGE is to explore the implications for a precautionary approach to extremely low frequency electric and magnetic fields (ELF/EMF) and to make practical recommendations to Government. SAGE’s First Interim Assessment: Power Lines and Property, Wiring in Homes and Electrical Equipment in Homes considered two sources of EMF: high voltage overhead power lines and electrical wiring and equipment inside the home and was published in April 2007.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) advised Government on the SAGE First Interim Assessment in October 2007. The HPA’s advice is available at:

The reply from the former Minister of State can be found at:

I will be issuing a written statement on the Government’s response to the SAGE First Interim Assessment very shortly on behalf of myself and my hon. Friends the Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath), and the Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Mr. Austin).