Popular Mechanics – In recent years, there has been a controversy about increased cancer deaths of people living near power lines. Physicists and power industry executives have dismissed this link, because they say the energy levels are too low to affect cell chemistry, but the statistics tell another story. Now British researchers report that lung cancer deaths are highest in people living downwind of power lines, rather than nearby. Denis Hernshaw, a physics professor at Bristol University, says that cancer-causing chemicals in the air may pass through the electrical field surrounding a power line and become electrically charged ions.

Ions could more strongly adhere to human tissue, increasing an individual?s exposure to cancer-causing agents in the atmosphere. Studies to either confirm or eliminate this theory are being planned. We can expect plenty of backlash from the big utility companies.

Source: Popular Mechanics, Jan. 2001.

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