Do cell phone towers cause cancer? This question has been going rounds in the media for the past few years. Tons of printing ink has been spent on this issue.With easy availability of electronic means of communication all views get publicized.Good sound bites and emotional views get priority. Reporters generally fell in line. They gave more weight to opinions articulated strongly. In one instance a reporter ignored the views of a cancer specialist and gave credence to a person selling “protective” screens and shields against cell phone tower radiation. Either they did not know of the conflict of interest or they found the views of an activist more appealing. Common people and even some responsible authorities are confused.
Over the years I spent in studying the risks from physical agents such as ionizing radiation, I realized that one should be always very careful about accepting the views of any one. I learnt that the best way is to find out the views of agencies such as the World Health Organisation, and professional associations such as cancer societies. These have standard methods to express views that are based on consensus developed by specialists after reviewing peer reviewed literature on the topic