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Cumulative effect of Additional Equipment for Telecom Towers (20 June 2023 Agenda deferred to August Council Meeting)

Telecommunications Deployment

"Telecommunications carriers have powers under Schedule 3 of the Telecommunications Act 1997 to inspect land, install ‘low-impact’ facilities, and to maintain any kind of telecommunications facility. They also have immunity from some state and territory laws when carrying out these activities, such as planning laws.

This is called the carriers’ powers and immunities framework.

The carriers' powers and immunities framework is important as it allows for the efficient construction and maintenance of telecommunications networks in a nationally consistent way.

Low-impact facilities are telecommunications equipment that:

  • are essential to the efficient operation of telecommunications networks
  • have low visual impact, and
  • are unlikely to cause significant community disruption during installation or operation.

These laws encourage telecommunications carriers to roll out networks using components that fall within strict type, size, colour and location limitations. For example, telecommunications companies use these powers to install pillars and antennae used to deliver landline and mobile communications services to the community.

They do not allow for the construction of larger infrastructure, such as free standing telecommunications towers or poles.

Approvals for the installation of free standing telecommunications towers and poles are the responsibility of state, territory and local governments. Planning laws generally require a development application to be submitted to the local council and for the council to consult on the application. The Government is not involved in state, territory and local government planning processes." - The carriers' powers and immunities framewor, viewed 22 July 2023, https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/media-communications-arts/phone/telecommunications-infrastructure-deployment/carriers-powers-and-immunities-framework

eme.gov.au Fact Sheet

Electromagnetic energy.
Researched.
Regulated.
Safe. (fact sheet)

"Australia has strict standards covering acceptable levels of EME from wireless communications. These standards are set by the Australian Radiation Protection andNuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA).
Australia’s strict EME standards were updated by ARPANSA as recently as March 2021, informed by the latest local and international scientific research.
These standards are enforced by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). ACMA checks EME compliance through record audits, investigations, site inspections and testing." - Researched, Regulated & Safe, This factsheet explains the research, regulation and safety of EME from telecommunications in Australia,Download PDF (3.5 MB)

"Find out about the safety of telecommunications infrastructure near your home

In 2022, telecommunication and digital connectivity are important parts of everyday life and it’s hard to imagine a world without communications technologies as we know them today.

Our experiences through the pandemic meant access to quality and reliable telecommunications services is more important than ever, keeping us connected with family and friends, and enabling many of us to learn and work from home.  

While our fixed line internet services stood up well to the pandemic, it has been just as important for telecommunications companies to expand and improve their mobile networks to support our increasing need for digital connectivity.

To make this happen, telecommunications companies often need to install new equipment or deploy new infrastructure in our communities so the services can provide effective coverage and capacity where and when we need it.

It is understandable some people are concerned about the electromagnetic energy (EME) emitted by telecommunications infrastructure, particularly when it is installed nearby in our local communities.

The Australian Government strictly regulates EME emissions to protect the health and safety of all members of the public, while allowing the community to benefit from modern telecommunications.

The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) provides advice to the Australian Government on radiation protection as an independent Government agency that is not affiliated with, or unduly influenced by, the telecommunications industry. In 2021, ARPANSA updated its Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields – 100 kHz to 300 GHz (2021) (the Standard), based on the most up-to-date Australian and international peer-reviewed research into EME.

The Standard protects people of all ages and health status against all known adverse health effects from exposure to EME by specifying strict safety limits for exposure levels with which telecommunications services must comply, this includes 5G.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) sets and actively monitors rules for telecommunications companies to follow based on ARPANSA’s Standard so EME is kept at safe levels. In Australia, all telecommunications infrastructure and equipment must comply with these rules and a series of sanctions can be imposed if these rules aren’t followed.

With these measures in place to ensure that EME exposures from telecommunications infrastructure are below the safety limits, there is no extra safety achieved by requiring transmitters to be located any particular distance from residential areas.

So if there is telecommunications infrastructure near you, not only will you be able to access more reliable connectivity but also find comfort in knowing that the technology making that connection possible is researched, regulated and safe.

Find out more at www.eme.gov.au

Further reading:

How we keep communities safe

The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) is an independent government agency that provides advice to the Government on radiation protection. ARPANSA updated its Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields – 100 kHz to 300 GHz (the Standard), based on the most up-to-date Australian and international peer-reviewed research into EME.
The Standard protects people of all ages and health status against all known adverse health effects from exposure to EME by specifying strict safety limits for exposure levels with which telecommunications services must comply, including 5G. -
Telecommunications infrastructure near your home. This factsheet provides information on the rules and regulations that apply when telecommunications infrastructure is deployed in your community.
Document Download PDF(367.56 KB)

Source: https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/media-communications-arts/spectrum/5g-and-eme/resource-hub/fact-sheets-and-infographics#telecommunications (viewed 22 July2023)

Additional Info

Correspondence from Amplitel 19/01/2023 DA/2022/076

Site Reference: 331054 Leichhardt Darley Rd
Date: 19/01/2023
Mr Eric Wong
Senior Planner
Inner West Council
Via Email: eric.wong@innerwest.nsw.gov.au
Dear Eric
DA/2022/0761 Construction of a new mobile base station facility on Lot 1 DP 1262751,
Darley Road LEICHHARDT NSW
On behalf of Amplitel, thank you for providing us the opportunity to address the concerns raised by members of the public during the notification period...Health and Safety EME levels, which are based on safety guidelines recommended by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), are set by the Australian
Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) and regulated by the Federal Government’s, Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
The ACMA’s regulatory arrangements require base stations to comply with the exposure limits set in the relevant Australian safety standard; the Radiation Protection Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields – 100 kHz to 300 GHz (2021), known as RPS S-1 or the ARPANSA Standard.
The proposal at Smeeth Road [near Griffith NSW??]has been designed to comply with the relevant Australian safety standard called RPS S-1 or Radiation Protection Series – S1(Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields – 100 kHz to 300 GHz). RPS S-1 is set by ARPANSA and is based on the safety guidelines recommended by theInternational Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP)....

NOM that was  on 20 June 2023 Agenda deferred to August Council Meeting

Item No:         C0623(1) Item 44

Subject:         Notice of Motion: Cumulative effect of Additional Equipment for Telecom Towers           

From:             Councillor Marghanita Da Cruz  

 

 

MOTION

1.   That Council receive a briefing note about proposals for Telecom Towers in our LGA and the regulatory framework.

2.   That Council write to the Minister for Telecommunications, copying local federal members, that our residents have concerns about the initial and cumulative radiation from these towers being placed in our densely populated LGA and to advise what Radiation Safeguards are in place regarding ensuring the cumulative radiation effect of the additional equipment and community consultation are met.

 

Background

 

Council has received applications from Telecommunication Companies to install Towers in our LGA.

Council can only assess the visual impacts of the Towers, not the radiation from the initial equipment being installed on the Towers or cumulative radiation from any additional equipment which is installed in the future.

 

'Phone towers and base stations When telcos want to build or install new equipment near you, there are rules they must follow. '

https://www.acma.gov.au/phone-towers-and-base-stations

 

Officer’s Comments:

 

No further comments were required for this Notice of Motion.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

Nil.

 

Source: https://innerwest.infocouncil.biz/Open/2023/06/C_20062023_AGN_4010_AT_WEB.htm

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