France has passed a trail-blazing new law banning Wi-Fi from nurseries to protect young children’s health, writes Lynne Wycherley. The law draws on mounting research demonstrating that the pulsed radiofrequency (RF) radiation used by wireless technologies is biologically active. Israel is considering a Wi-Fi ban in schools.

The new law was watered down by the French senate in what the proponents described as protecting industry interests. “This present text does not address all the issues,” said its author, Laurence Abeille (Europe Ecology – The Greens). “However, it is an essential first step.” Other requirements in the new law include the following: Wi-Fi in primary schools must be switched off when not in educational use; clear instructions must be given on how to disable all routers’ wireless function; compulsory signage where Wi-Fi is in use in public places; and curbs on mobile-phone-mast radiation ‘hotspots’ – where RF radiation is found to be unusually high, exceeding 6 volts per metre.

The potential effects on health from Wi-Fi were first compared to passive smoking in 2007 by the British geneticist Mae-Wan Ho. Peer-reviewed research reveals that small animals exposed to Wi-Fi can suffer free-radical damage to their eyes, blood, larynx, testes and heart; they can also become pre-diabetic. Last year, Lukas Magiritis of Athens University measured insect damage from brief exposure to Wi-Fi and other wireless media. And the updated BioInitiative Report ( by 29 precautionary scientists, informed by over 5,000 science papers, offers evidence for disease risks from our “wireless tsunami”.

Earlier this year, the European Economic and Social Committee – a European Union consultative assembly – reversed moves to adopt a landmark paper on the need to protect adults and children suffering from electromagnetic-field exposure symptoms (EHS), notably from wireless technologies. Eileen O’Connor, director of Radiation Research Trust (UK), commented: “This reckless decision will allow […] ever-increasing levels of pulsed RF microwave radiation to blanket the planet while ignoring the human rights and plight of people [who are] suffering.”

Lynne Wycherley is a science-trained poet.