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Senegal tackling health effects of non-ionizing radiation

The Regulatory Authority for Telecommunications and Posts (ARTP) of Senegal ensures that it has taken the lead in the fight…

The Regulatory Authority for Telecommunications and Posts (ARTP) of Senegal ensures that it has taken the lead in the fight against any health risk related to non-ionizing radiation (NIR).By Abdourahmane Diallo

Assessing the exposure to danger and the importance of the risk in order to prioritize the preventive actions to be taken is what the ARTP’s actions boil down to in the fight against health problems that could emanate from non-ionizing radiation, also called electromagnetic waves.

To carry out this mission, the regulatory authority is increasing its technical means. 

After the establishment, in 2016, of an approval station for all tools likely to emit NIR, “other very innovative tools, which are at the forefront of technology, are being acquired and will be in service this year,” said Tuesday in Saly (80 kilometers east of Dakar), the Director General of ARTP, Abdou Ly.

These new devices will allow the ARTP “to know whether the NIRs are spread in acceptable proportions and bearable by the human body,” Ly said. 

He was speaking at the 5th forum of exchange and sharing on regulated sectors with journalists specializing in information technology and communication (ICT).

Among these technologies is a chain of measures arranged in a vehicle equipped for the evaluation of exposure to electromagnetic fields and ionizing radiation. 

It is an NIR solution from the company Wavecontrol.

It will include a portable electromagnetic field meter, a probe for continuous measurement of electromagnetic fields in accordance with the recommendation of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and an electromagnetic mapping for large areas such as cities (solution to be installed on the roofs of buildings or vehicles).

In addition, the regulator plans to multiply its Frequency Control Centers (FCC). 

Thus, after Dakar, it is planned to install a CFC in Matam (north), Kolda (south) and in the center of the country.

Through these Regional Frequency Control Centers (CFC), the ARTP wants to decentralize the management and control activities, verification of compliance with national rules in force and monitoring of emissions as an auxiliary to the spectrum management policy.

In addition, the regulator intends to deploy a fixed network of probes in areas of high radio concentration or public places. 

The establishment of an NIR monitoring center with the creation of a website where the public will be able to view exposure levels in real time and the creation of a National NIR Observatory are planned.

A communication campaign around the project will also be conducted to fight against false information related to exposure to electromagnetic radiation. 

Several rumors establish a link between the increase in cancer cases and exposure to NIR. 

While studies are, to date, insufficient to confirm the carcinogenic nature or not of low or high frequency electromagnetic fields.

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