Fig. 8 From (*1) Cellular Base Stations in Belo Horizonte
Strange Result No. 1
Dr. Richard Leonelli, a physicist from the Université de Montréal pointed out a strange result derived from Table 5 (*1).
Table 5 Cancer deaths according to cumulative distance from the base station
Dr. Leonelli points out that Table 5 reports that the relative risk of dying from cancer is 1.35 in the inner 100-meter ring when compared with the overall average. This is low enough to have at least some level of credibility, but high enough to cause concern. But this average includes the large population in the inner ring. What if we calculate the mortality in the inner ring and the outer rings separately and then compare the results?
If we look at the zone between 500 - 1000 meters, there is a population of 214,300 (5) and 320 (6)deaths. This gives a mortality rate of 15 (7) in this zone. This gives a relative risk of 2.9 (8) for the inner 100 meter ring relative to the 500 - 1000 meter ring - which is big.
If we look at the zone between 800 - 1000 meters and carry out the same analysis, we find a mortality rate of 9 (9). This is a relative risk of 4.8 (10) - which is enormous. This approximately 500% difference in the risk of death by cancer between the inner and outer zones is even bigger. The huge apparent difference in risk between the inner zone and the outer zones cannot be real.
If there were a causal association between cancer and proximity from a base station, these numbers would imply that RF emissions from base stations are actually a major cause of death for all types of cancers. As a consequence, cancer mortality rates should have increased markedly in the last decade, in parallel with the increasing number of base stations. This is not the case! For example, both cancer incidence and mortality have decreased in Canada in the last 15 years (*3 P40 & 41)). Thus, the huge apparent difference in risk between the inner zone and the outer zones cannot be real. Selection bias may be responsible for these lopsided numbers.
Strange Result No. 2
Another particularly strange result of this study is the distribution of the number of cancer deaths versus the duration of exposure (See Fig 16). This graph shows that the number of deaths peaked in the period of 1 - 2 years after a base station was installed, and mortality dropped steadily for each additional year of exposure. This result is contrary to what would be expected if base stations caused cancer. The number of cancer deaths should increase with time. In addition, it is well established that virtually all cancer types take many years to develop. There is no known carcinogen that could induce a wide spectrum of cancer types in such a short period. For example the latency to develop lung cancer from smoking is approximately 20 years. If it were true that exposure to EMF caused noticeable increases in cancer deaths after only two years, there would be vast zones of unpopulated land around every TV and FM transmitter, and in every urban area in the world. Again, this result calls into question the validity of the entire study.