EMF Policies, Standards and Research Activities in Korea
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EMF Policies, Standards and Research Activities in Korea. Oct. 29, 2001 Jeong-Ki Pack Chungnam National University, KOREA. Contents. Public Concerns and Risk Communication Efforts EMF Organizations EMF Policies EMF Standards Research Activities. Public Concerns.

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EMF Policies, Standards and Research Activities in Korea

Oct. 29, 2001

Jeong-Ki Pack

Chungnam National University, KOREA


Contents

  • Public Concerns and Risk Communication Efforts

  • EMF Organizations

  • EMF Policies

  • EMF Standards

  • Research Activities


Public Concerns

  • Public concerns associated with power lines, mobile phones and base stations are increasing continuously each year

  • Number of Petitions in 2000

    • Power lines : 120

    • Base stations : 152

  • A number of persons appeal that they are suffering from EMF hypersensitivity. Some of them are very severe.


Risk Communication Efforts

  • Publication of Booklets on EMF

    • Questions & Answers on :

      • Characteristics of EMF, Interaction mechanisms

      • Health effects, Research activities and results

      • Protection guidelines, etc.

    • Three kinds of booklets were published up to now.

  • Operation of EMF Website

    • Homepage of “EMF Bioeffect Committee”

    • Contains information on EMF health issues and linked to relevant sites.

    • Need more comprehensive contents and more frequent update.


EMF Organizations

Government

Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy

Ministry of Information and Communication

Ministry of Environment

Radio & Broadcasting Bureau – Radio Management Dept.

Director General for Energy Industry – Electric Power Industry Division

Air Quality Management Bureau – Noise, Vibration and Dust Division

Radio

Research Lab.


EMF Organizations (continued)

Research Institutes

Korea Electric Power Research Institute

National Institute of Environment Research

Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute

Korea Electromagnetics Engineering Society

Korea Electrotechnology Institute

Korea Institute

of Electrical Engineers


EMF Organizations (continued)

  • Ministry of Information and Communication (MIC)

    • Supports EMF researches(mainly MF and RF)

    • Prepares and publishes regulations for EMF exposure limits and measurement methods

    • Supports International EMF Project

  • Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy (MCIE), Ministry of Environment (ME)

    • Supports ELF researches only


EMF Policies

  • Adoption of National Guidelines

    • Article 47-2 of the “Radio Wave Act” in Korea was revised and proclaimed in January 2000.

    • MIC of Korean government announced officially four ordinances in January 2001:

      • Guidelines for human protection from EMF exposure

      • Guidelines for measurement of electromagnetic field

      • Guidelines for measurement of SAR

      • Installations and devices to which the exposure limits apply

    • Will be in effective from January 1, 2002.

    • The ordinances for mobile phone will be mandatory, but others are just recommendations.


EMF Policies (continued)

  • New Mobile-Phone Policies

    • SAR values of mobile phones currently on market will be measured, and the results will be published by the end of this year.

    • A mandatory rule to restrict the use of mobile phones in moving vehicles has been adopted.

      • Motorists should use hands-free devices while driving from Nov. 1, 2001.

    • Mobile phones must comply with SAR limits from Jan. 1, 2002.

      • Certifications will be issued by RRL(Radio Research Lab.)

      • Compliance tests can be performed at laboratories approved by government.


EMF Policies (continued)

  • Main Principle of EMF Policies

    • Precautionary principle is not adopted yet, but it will be considered carefully if the method of implementation is well established.

    • Only the well-established scientific results will be taken into account for guidelines.

    • If new scientific evidences are found, or if EHC’s of WHO for ELF and RF are published, guidelines for exposure limits will be revised properly.

    • Korean government will make efforts for international harmonization of guidelines.


EMF Standards

  • Exposure Limits for EMF Intensities

    • Regulate maximum permissible level of electric field, magnetic field, or power density, generated by stationary installations, appliances, etc.

    • Frequency range: 0 – 300 GHz

    • Two-tier standard: General public/Workers

    • Exceptions:

      • Mobile radio stations

      • Installations operated in an emergency or a natural disaster

      • Facilities installed in the area such as mountains where the general public do not enter frequently

      • Low-power devices


EMF Standards (continued)

  • Exposure Limits for EMF Intensities (continued)

    • Closely follows the ICNIRP guideline

    • Limits for induced current, contact current, and pulsed EMF are not included.

  • Exposure Limit for SAR

    • Regulates maximum permissible level of SAR in local exposure environments.

    • Frequency range: 100 kHz – 10 GHz

    • One-tier standard: General public only

    • Applies only to mobile phones.

    • The IEEE/ANSI guideline was adopted


Research Activities

  • Research Funds

    • MIC launched a 5-year EMF research project in 2000:

      • Funded by the government and mobile-phone companies

      • Budget amounts to 10.9 billion won(about $ 8.5 million) for 5 years

        (billion won)


Research Activities (continued)

  • Research Funds (continued)

    • MIC launched a 5-year EMF research project in 2000 (continued)

      • Epidemiological studies, in vivo and in vitro studies for MF and RF exposure, as well as dosimetry and other engineering studies

      • Collaborating organizations: KEES, RRL, ETRI

    • ME and MCIE also support several ELF research projects:

      • Collaborating organizations: KEPCO, KEI, KRICT, KIEE, NIER


Research Activities (continued)

  • In vivo Studies

    • ELF-I: Mice(BALB/c) were exposed to 60 Hz electric and magnetic fields up to 3 generations

      • For the exposure levels of the ICNIRP guideline, there was no significant health effect.

      • For higher exposure level(30 kV/m, 1.5 mT), congenital abnormalities were observed and possible adverse effects on immune system and reproduction function were found.

    • ELF-2: Rat(Sprague-Dawley) were exposed to 60 Hz magnetic field during pregnancy to examine teratogenesis(malformation upon gestational age)

      • Malformation was not observed up to the exposure level of 500 μT.


Research Activities (continued)

  • In vivo Studies (continued)

    • MF:In vivo study of mice exposed to sawtooth magnetic fields of 20 kHz is on-going and will be continued until 2002, in order to investigate the effects on subacute toxicity, malformation upon gestational age and carcinogenic effects.

    • RF:In vivo study of mice(normal and transgenic) exposed to electromagnetic fields of 848.5 MHz and 1762.5 MHz is scheduled for next year(Exposure systems are currently under development).

    • The main objective is to examine stress responses, effects on immune function and DNA synthesis rate for short-term exposure, and effects on tumorigenesis and immune function, cytopathological effects for long-term exposure.


Research Activities (continued)

  • In vitro Studies

    • RF: Human cells(T lymphomia cell, fibroblast cell) and mouse cells(T cell hybridoma, fibroblast cell) were exposed to electromagnetic fields of 848.5 MHz and 1762.5 MHz for 12hrs, in order to investigate cell proliferation and destruction, cell transformations, chromatic aberrations, alterations in gene expression and stress responses.

      • For the exposure level up to 75 W/kg, no direct short-term effect on chromosome was observed, but stress response and reversible suppression of cell growth were observed.

    • Long-term exposure study is on-going and will be continued next year.


Research Activities (continued)

  • In vitro Studies (continued)

    • MF: In vitro study for sawtooth magnetic fields of 20 kHz is planned for next year, in order to investigate mechanisms for initiation and promotion of cancer and other effects.


Research Activities (continued)

  • Epidemiological Studies

    • A study of cancers(leukemia, malignant lymphoma, brain tumor, breast cancer) for the residents near high power AM transmission stations was performed last year(geographical correlation study), and it is continued this year(case-control study).

      • Among ten exposed areas, two areas were showed significantly higher rate of incidence for leukemia and brain tumor compared to control areas.

    • As a pilot study for health effects of mobile-phone use, a cross-sectional symptom survey was conducted last year, and will be continued next year.

      • No statistical correlation was found for brain cancer and breast cancer, but a clear statistical correlation between woman thyroid cancer and mobile phone use was observed.

      • Dose-response relations were observed for symptoms like dizziness, nausea, eye pain, ear symptom, fatigue, heat sensation, etc.


Research Activities (continued)

  • Volunteer Studies

    • EEG test was performed for 16 physically and mentally healthy male volunteers to investigate possible correlation between function of human brain and mobile phone use.

      • No significant difference was found between exposed group and control group

      • Further investigation are required and study for larger group of volunteers may be needed.


Research Activities (continued)

  • Dosimetry

    • Exposure systems for in vivo and in vitro studies

    • Exposure assessments for epidemiological studies(measurement and numerical studies)

    • High resolution numerical phantom model for human head and whole body

    • Analysis of SAR and modeling of temperature rise in human head resulting from RF exposure

    • SAR measurement systems(E-field probe, 5-axis robot and measurement control SW), and measurement methods

    • Measurement and modeling of dielectric properties of phathological tissues

    • Numerical modeling of induced current due to ELF exposure

    • Uncertainty analysis for SAR measurement


Research Activities (continued)

  • Other Engineering Studies

    • SAR reduction techniques for mobile phones

      • Mn-Zn ferrite bead inside of the helical coil of mobile-phone antenna

      • Array of conventional helical-coil antenna

      • Plane patch antenna

      • Several other techniques

    • Measurement of EMF’s from appliances, broadcasting stations, base stations, radars, power lines, medical equipments, industrial equipments

      • EMF levels were fairly or far below guidelines, except induction heater, MRI equipment , a few of broadcasting stations, old power lines, low-quality electrical blankets

    • Characterization of pulsed and near-field EMF, and studies on measurement methods


Conclusions

  • EMF studies were started in late 90’s, but current research activities are quite active, especially in dosimetry and SAR reduction technology.

  • Five-year research project has been launched in 2000, and EMF researches become well organized with the embarkment of the Korea EMF Project.

  • Guidelines for exposure limits and measurement methods are announced, and SAR of mobile phones will be regulated from Jan. 1, 2002.

  • Facilities generating EMF will also be regulated in the near future, and exposure limits will be revised if new scientific evidences are found.


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