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CTIA sues San Francisco over cell phone radiation law

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The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA) on Friday filed a lawsuit to block enforcement of a recent San Francisco ordinance (PDF) that requires cell phone retailers to display a handset’s specific absorption rate, or SAR. Three weeks ago CTIA said it would no longer hold its autumn trade show in San Francisco.

The CTIA suit (PDF) was filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco accuses the city of unlawfully interfering with the “FCC’s exclusive, congressionally derived authority” with regard to radio frequency emissions from cell phones and other wireless devices.

The press secretary for San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera, Matt Dorsey, said that his office had not had time to fully read the suit, but that the ordinance only gives consumers easier access to publicly available materials. “The cell phone lobby is arguing that improving access to information is somehow illegal,” Doresy said. “We think that’s a novel legal concept.”

CTIA has long held that cell phone use does not pose any health danger. (Imagine THAT! :-) ) Scientific research cited by the CNET article is inconclusive, including the recent May 2010 Interphone study.

CNET has posted a table of cell phone radiation levels here.

-Bill at

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