One More Thing Slipping Under The Wire In Coronado - Coronado Eagle & Journal | Coronado News | Coronado Island News: Opinion

One More Thing Slipping Under The Wire In Coronado

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Posted: Thursday, June 13, 2019 2:30 pm

First it was the Coronado Bridge, then it was the Coronado Shores, and now it’s in excess of one hundred poles with 4G/5G EMR coming to your neighborhood! And you never heard a word about it until maybe a month ago. I attended the recent June 4, 2019 City Council meeting, maybe you watched it on TV. Bill Sandke and Whitney Benzian were absent. The AT&T rep was present along with the attorney who helped write the 5G City of Coronado Ordinance. There were two AT&T reps present, one apologized for missing the last meeting and then I don’t remember hearing anything else from him. Kevin McGee did all the talking and this is what he said.

There are four macro facilities in Coronado at the present time and they are located on the roof of Sharp Hospital, Rite Aid, the Fire Station and the Coronado Beach Hotel. There are two additional macros on North Island and one under construction at the Naval Amphibious Base. There are ten micro facilities and another proposed at Tidelands Park. Eight of the ten are submitted. Four were approved on May 21, 2019, plus three others, and there are three more pending approval. When asked how many total facilities there would be, the reply was that there is no long-term master plan. The City will be reassessed three times a year and then they will decide on the future. The 4G small cells will go up in the next 60 days, with 5G replacing them all in 2021.

First, the small cells will be put on the utility poles in the alleys, then three more will be put on Coronado Beach. Originally, they were to be erected on Orange Avenue, but AT&T thought they wouldn’t pass so they went to the current sites. They started working on sites with Coronado City Staff in December of 2016. I learned about it in May of 2019, about a month ago. The worst part of the meeting for me was when Kevin McGee giggled and said “These frequencies haven’t been tested.” It’s bad enough that they’re treating us like human guinea pigs in a bad scientific experiment but now they’re laughing all the way to the bank.

The higher the frequency (5G), the shorter the travel distance so more facilities (think poles) will be needed. 5G needs additional antennas. How many? He couldn’t answer. He said it depends on how much data the users are using. If competitor company antennas are in proximity to AT&Ts, does the radiation become additive? Not necessary, but maybe. On the AT&T model, it doesn’t appear that you have good service coverage everywhere ... does that mean more poles? We want to have the edge over our competitors. Is there a periodic check on the facilities? Typically no. Do tree block signals, will it kill them? I’m not aware of impact on vegetation. How many feet is safe from inhabited areas? There is a one-foot “stay back” area. Councilman Marvin Heinze interjected that the Navy has 20 feet safety lines. (None of these are 20 feet from the residences.) You can reach Kevin McGee at RP3124@att.com if you have more questions.

Next Dr. Jonathan Kramer from Telcom Law Firm took the floor. He stated that 50 percent of users have “cut the cord” or got rid of their landline. Can multiple companies locate on the same pole? Yes, but must separate for interference. Companies will be across the street from each other or several on a block. FCC is a “captured agency,” it does more promotion than regulating. FCC has given more work to be done in shorter time frames. Fee requirements have been reduced to $100 per site. There are no facilities allowed on Orange, Ocean, Glorietta or the Silver Strand. There is a maximum 500 feet range for coverage.

Is it safe? The FCC answers this with the question “Does the project site demonstrate planned compliance with FCC’s safety regulation concerning radio frequency emissions?” Dr Kramer said that question cannot be answered because the project site is not built yet. There are two safety standards: one for everyone who is exposed whether they know it or not and one for people working on the antennas. The home at 411 D already has an antenna but that does not matter. It is not a property but a right-of-way so it will get a second antenna. Once the application is approved, it’s hard to un-ring a bell. They don’t want sites on hills, they are better lower to the ground. If the site is too high or too strong, it will interfere with other sites. There will be an excess of 100 sites in the first two years. A variety of providers will be arriving in the future. FCC does consider use of a playground or school. He said that smaller bodies receive less radiation because they have less mass. Health risk is not a discussion.

After this meeting, I attended another meeting in Bonita with County Staff to discuss their new County 5G Ordinance. These are more laid-back meetings where you can ask questions and get answers right then from the staff, even have a discussion. One thing I heard that I really liked is that the County will not be placing 4G/5G sites within 1000’ of all schools, preschools, and churches.

If you’d like to find out more about these small cells and 5G, you can go to my facebook page Stop 5G Coronado Now. But even better, you can attend a free lecture by Dafna Tachover Esq. MBA, called “Wireless Radiation – Keeping Safer in a Wireless World.” Ms. Tachover is an attorney in New York and Israel. She has a technology background from her service in the Israeli Defense Forces as a Telecommunication and Computers Officer. She is the founder of “We Are The Evidence”, an advocacy organization for the protection of the rights of people who have been injured by wireless technology radiation. She led a Supreme Court case in Israel to ban the use of Wi-Fi in schools which led to the strictest limitations in the world on Wi-Fi in schools. The one-hour lecture will be held in the Winn Room of the Coronado Library, 640 Orange Avenue, on Tuesday, June 18 at 6:30 p.m. There will be a question and answer period after her talk. Find out how to reduce your exposure and protect your families. This is one event you won’t want to miss!

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