Good Science in Plain Language

Industry Canada Evaluates Exposure from Wi-Fi Access Points

People on ComputerThere are many advantages to having Wi-Fi access points in businesses, public and private institutions, and other public spaces, since Wi-Fi allows almost instantaneous access to information. However, there has been considerable public concern over the effects of exposure to Wi-Fi frequencies, particularly in areas frequented by children, such as schools.

Industry Canada has recently performed measurements to determine the level of exposure to the public from electromagnetic frequencies (EMF) emitted at Wi-Fi access points. To perform these measurements, Industry Canada simulated a typical Wi-Fi environment by installing 24 Wi-Fi enabled laptops, all simultaneously uploading and/or downloading data using a Wi-Fi connection, in a closed room with 2 Wi-Fi access points. Multiple configurations were considered.

The maximum instantaneous exposure level, measured at 20 cm from the Wi-Fi access point, was 10.59% of the Health Canada Safety Code 6 guideline for public exposure to Wi-Fi frequencies. In more typical scenarios, in which people are located several meters from the access point, Industry Canada determined that the exposure levels would be thousands of times below the Safety Code 6 limits.

Health Canada’s Safety Code 6 limits are based on an in-depth evaluation of available scientific literature on thermal and possible non-thermal effects of radio-frequencies on biological systems. For Wi-Fi frequencies, the limits are based on tissue-heating effects. Safety Code 6 has set the public exposure limit to be 50 times below any exposure that may lead to significant tissue heating. In other words, exposures in public areas below the Safety Code 6 limits will result in no adverse health effects.

To learn more, read Industry Canada’s Case Study: Measurements of Radiofrequency Exposure from Wi-Fi Devices.

June 28, 2012 – IAEA Fukushima Daiichi Status Report

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has issued its STATUS REPORT to the public on the current status of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, including information on environmental radiation monitoring, the status of workers, and current conditions on-site at the plant.

Cross Canada Survey of Radon Levels in Homes – Final Report

Cross-Canada Survey of Radon Concentrations in HomesHealth Canada recently published its final report on a two year cross-country survey of radon levels in homes. Almost 14,000 homes were successfully tested in 121 Health Regions across Canada. The results indicate that 6.9% of Canadians are living in homes with radon levels above Health Canada’s guideline of 200 Bq/m3, with a higher incidence of high radon levels in Manitoba, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, and the Yukon. The study noted that every province has areas of high radon levels and a significant number of homes with radon concentrations above the guideline.

Radon is an invisible, odourless, naturally occurring radioactive gas that can enter buildings through foundation cracks and similar unsealed openings. Long-term exposure to high concentrations of radon may lead to lung cancer – particularly if someone in your home is a smoker. Radon exposure is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.

Read Health Canada’s Cross-Canada Survey of Radon Concentrations in Homes (PDF)

To learn more about radon and home radon testing, click here.

The Fukushima Nuclear Accident and Its Aftermath

On 11 March 2011, the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant shocked the world and raised global concerns about nuclear safety. A year on, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) tells the story of the accident, its causes, how these accidents can be prevented and how the IAEA is working to strengthen nuclear safety.

FDA Investigating Illegal Online Sales

FDA Investigating Illegal Online Sales of Hand-Held X-ray Units

A February 13, 2012 PR Newswire-US Newswire Release indicates that the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is warning both dental and veterinary professionals not to purchase or use certain hand-held x-ray units being sold online by manufacturers outside the United States.

The Radiation Safety Institute of Canada is publishing this story as a public service alert. We have no knowledge at present of any such practice in Canada and are making this information available as a precaution, in view of the international sources of these machines

IAEA Mission to Assess Nuclear Safety in Japan

A report on the IAEA Web site states that an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) International Complementary Safety Assessment Review Mission will conduct a visit to Japan next week to assist the nation’s development of a comprehensive assessment of the safety of existing nuclear power plants.

Arranged at the request of the Japanese government, the 10-member team will consist of IAEA nuclear experts and international specialists who will hold meetings with Japanese officials in Tokyo and conduct a site visit to the Ohi Nuclear Power Plant in Fukui Prefecture.

Fukushima Nuclear Site Finally Stabilized

December 16,2011

Japan PM Says Fukushima Nuclear Site Finally Stabilized
A December 16, 2011 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has welcomed the announcement by Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda of the “cold shutdown condition” of the Fukushima nuclear site. According to Prime Minister Noda, the site is in a “stable state”, and the release of radioactive materials is “under control”.

Radiation Safety in The Workplace Podcast, Part II

Adult Ed - StudyingThe Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), in collaboration with the Radiation Safety Institute of Canada, has just released Part II of a special two-part mini-series Podcast on radiation in the workplace. In this episode, our Radiation Scientist, Claire Cohalan, focuses on safety and how workers can protect themselves from radiation in the workplace.

You can listen by following the “Radiation in The Workplace” link on the following pages:

In English, visit www.ccohs.ca/products/podcasts/.

Le balado est aussi disponible en français, à www.cchst.ca/products/podcasts/.

Free Online Course on Radiation Safety!

Visit our new Online Learning Course, under the “Your Resources” tab, to take a short, free online course about radiation and radiation safety. The course was designed to educate both workers and members of the public about the nature of radiation and radioactivity. We hope you like it and that you’ll give us your feedback!

Radiation Safety in The Workplace Podcast, Part 1

Adult Ed - StudyingThe Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), in collaboration with the Radiation Safety Institute of Canada, has just released Part I of a special two-part mini-series Podcast on radiation in the workplace. In this episode, our Radiation Scientist Claire Cohalan, answers questions on the nature of radiation, where can it be found, and what the potential health effects to workers are.

You can listen by following the “Radiation in The Workplace” link on the following pages:

In English, visit www.ccohs.ca/products/podcasts/.

Le balado est aussi disponible en français, à www.cchst.ca/products/podcasts/.

Stay tuned! The second part of this podcast will be available next month!

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