More recent data, cases and controls from Scotland
Researchers at the Childhood Cancer Research Group in Oxford extended their previous study of childhood leukaemia and proximity to power lines by including more recent data, cases and controls from Scotland, by considering 132 kV power lines as well as 275 kV and 400 kV and by looking at greater distances from the power lines. Their report published today concludes that the risk declines after the 1980s.
In 2005, the ‘Draper Study’ [ii], published in the British Medical Journal reported an increased risk of leukaemia in children born in England and Wales between 1962-1995 whose birth address fell within 600 metres of a high voltage power line.
Electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) are created by the presence of electricity. They are produced in varying degrees and strengths by all elements of the electricity supply system – from high-voltage power lines to domestic electrical appliances.
A doubling of the risk of childhood leukaemia with exposure to magnetic fields associated with the electricity supply above 0.3/0.4 microtesla is widely acknowledged. The robustness of this association has been re-affirmed in the recent EU SCENIHR draft Report [iii] and a new pooled analysis of international studies [iv].