Did you know that properties in close vicinity of cellphone towers are priced lower than those having a safe distance between the property and the tower? Have you ever wondered why? Studies show that cellphone towers emit massive amounts of EMFs, which can be damaging to our health and wellbeing.
So, you’ve recently heard news of plans to erect a new cell phone tower in your neighbourhood, in your kids’ school, or close to where you work, and you are concerned about the health implications. How can you legally fight this becoming a reality? Read on for some tips on action you can take:
See if you can engage with the landowner of the property where the cellphone tower is planned to be installed. Try to chat to them about the proposed tower and the concerns you have – they might not be aware of the harmful effects of EMF.
Engage with Council. Were you given a document from your Council to alert you to the proposed tower? If so, make use of the contact details provided on it. A helpful example of a template of a rejection letter to the City of Cape Town can be found here. Your local Ward Councillor, whose details you can find online, is another useful person to be in contact with.
Do some research to try and find out who the proposed service providers for the cellphone tower are (for example: Vodacom, MTN, or Cell C). Request that they engage with the community about the installation and your concerns.
Chat to your neighbours. Many of them might not know about the proposed cell tower. Share your health concerns with them, and pool resources and information. Create documents that you can share with your neighbours – such as a fact sheet about the proposed tower and a call to action based on the details of the installation.
Further educate yourself and those around you about the harmful effects of electromagnetic radiation. These include health concerns, environmental impacts, property values, and how you can reduce EMF exposure in your own home and life. Collate a strong argument, as those who are not aware of the issue will want you to validate your proposal.
Become an activist. You can start a petition in your neighbourhood for those against the proposed installation – be sure to include important details of each signee such as their name, address, and contact details. Your petition can also include additional commentary from each signee. Consider writing letters to the press to bring more attention to the matter, or stage a peaceful protest. In order for your protest to be recognised as legal, you will need to seek permission from the relevant Council and traffic department. Be sure to invite the media!
You might consider seeking legal advice. Seek out a lawyer who has dealt with similar issues in the past, or has experience in the space of environmental law.
Do not give up! Persistence here is key. Be prepared for this process taking some time and effort – but know that it will be worth it in the end for your health and that of your community as well as for retaining the value of your property.
Read More Here:
EMRSA, 2015. How can we oppose a cellphone tower installation? Available: http://www.emrsa.co.za/how-can-we-oppose-a-cellphone-tower-installation/
Goba, T. 2020. Durban residents reject 5G towers on their property. Available: https://bereamail.co.za/242445/berea-residents-reject-5g-towers-on-their-property/
Harrisberg, K. 2020. South Africans push back against 5G towers in their backyards. Available: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-safrica-property-mobilephone-trfn-idUSKCN24W21H
Safe Space Protection. 2022. Is Cell Tower Radiation Dangerous?. Available: https://www.safespaceprotection.com/emf-health-risks/emf-health-effects/cell-towers/