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Don Maisch E-mail: yahoo@emfacts.com


The following is taken from the introduction to the web site

"Electrical Pollution Solutions" and is one of the most informative

ones on the topic of "dirty power", a problem that also effects

Australia to a great degree.

Go to http://www.electricalpollution.com/intro.html and have thorough

read as well as the links to other useful sites.

Introduction to Electrical Pollution

"Dirty" power: The world's largest health experiment.

What you don't know can kill you.

Electricity today is not a simple 60 Hz electrical signal. The

increased use of modern electronics and other non-linear,

time-varying loads has over-loaded the distribution system with

high-frequency electrical pollution that causes "dirty" power.

"Dirty" power is widely recognized to be a problem for industry. The

July 5, 1999 issue of Fortune states that "Dirty power costs U.S.

industry anywhere from $4 billion to $6 billion a year, according to

Karl Stahlkopf, a vice president at the utility financed

Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI)." Alliant Energy even sent

out an informational leaflet in electrical bills entitled "Energy

Basics: Power Surges" which states "Low-level power surges won't melt

parts or blow fuses, but they can cause "electronic rust," gradually

degrading internal circuitry until it ultimately fails." and "Small

surges won't leave any outward evidence, so you may not even be aware

they're happening - even though they may occur dozens or even

hundreds of times each day. "

During day to day living countless finely tuned electrically mediated

reactions occur constantly in order to keep our bodies running. It is

unreasonable to believe that "dirty" power can cause substantial

damage to home electronics and industrial equipment and not affect

the finely tuned electrical interactions in our bodies. In fact, the

findings in the paper Dirty Electrical Power Affects Cows (condensed

from "Relationship of Electric Power Quality to Milk Production of

Dairy Herds," in

press, by Donald Hillman, Dave Stetzer, Martin Graham, Charles L.

Goeke, Kurt Mathson, Harold H. VanHorn, and Charles J. Wilcox) show

that the number of high frequency events correlates closely with milk

production e.g. greater numbers of high frequency events correlated

with lower milk production and lower numbers of high frequency events

correlated with higher milk production. In addition to causing health

problems directly, this high-frequency pollution also leads to

another source

of problems: ground currents.

History of Electrical Pollution

In the 1950's, the National Electrical Safety Code (NESC) required a

neutral wire to return current to the utilities. This was not

required in rural areas until 1960. It is forbidden by the NESC 92D

for the earth to be used as the neutral return. In fact, on page 152

of the NESC Handbook Fourth Edition it says, "When earth returns were

used in some rural areas prior to the 1960's they became notorious

offenders in dairy areas because circulating currents often caused

both step and touch potentials." It

concludes "these have adversely affected milking operations by

shocking the cattle when they were connected to the milking machines,

and have affected feeding." These are exactly the issues that farmers

face today.

How can there be dairy or human health problems due to electricity

returning through the earth, since we do have a neutral wire now?

The Public Service Commission (PSC) has allowed the utilities to

install grounding rods on the neutral return wire, instead of

increasing the size of the neutral wires. (Overloading of the wires

is a fire hazard and installing grounding rods is less costly on a

short-term basis than upgrading the neutral.) Current then flows down

the grounding rods and through the earth back to the substation when

the wire is over loaded. A Minnesota study found that over 70% of the

current returns to the

substation via the earth in some areas. Dr. Duane Dahlberg's paper

entitled "Why Ground Currents" briefly discusses the origin and

health ramifications of electrical ground currents citing many

industry , university, and independant studies. In 1957, 10 billion

Kilowatt-hours of electricity were sold statewide. In 2000, 65

billion Kilowatt-hours of electricity were sold statewide. Assuming

problems occurred prior to 1960 with a total earth neutral return,

all current returning via the earth,

10 billion Kilowatt-hours of electricity flowing through the earth

caused health problems for cattle. Now, assuming that 70% of the

electricity returns via the earth in 2000, there are 45 billion

Kilowatt-hours returning through the earth in 2000. This means that

there is nearly five times as much electricity returning through the

earth now than there was in 1957. In effect, we are being exposed to

more electrical pollution now than we were in the 1950's when the

neutral wire became a requirement.

These numbers show conclusively why loopholes need to be closed and

better enforcement of the regulations is needed. According to the

NESC no objectionable current flow is allowed down the grounding rod,

however the NESC left objectionable undefined. This has left it up to

individuals to prove that current flow that occurs is objectionable.

Legislation like Wisconsin Rep. Barbara Gronemus's 2001 AB 754 would

take the onus off of individuals by providing a concrete definition

of objectionable i.e. "a steady state of current for five seconds or

more." Defining objectionable in this

manner means there would be no current flow allowed on the neutral

grounding wire except under fault conditions e.g. lightening strikes.

> > Why do we need larger neutral wires compared to phase or "hot" wires?

> >

> > We use power differently today than in the 1950's. An increasing

> > percentage of electricity is used for non-linear, time-varying loads

(e.g. electronics like TVs or computers, dimmer switches, and

variable speed motors). Non-linear, time-varying loads distort the

sine wave causing high frequencies. The distorted sine wave or

"dirty" power sees a higher resistance on the wire, so a larger

return wire is necessary. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics

Engineers (IEEE) addressed this in the IEEE

Standard 519-1992 which states that modern loads require a neutral

wire 225% of the size of the phase wires. At this time in the United

States, it is unusual for the neutral wire to even be the same size

as the phase wires. Most of the neutrals are half the size of the

phase wires. The electricity that cannot flow on the neutral, because

the neutral is too small, travels back to the substation through the


Can anything be done besides increasing the size of the neutral?

Yes, in addition to outlining the sizing of the neutral necessary for

modern electronic loads, the IEEE 519-1992 discusses other techniques

for improving power quality. It addresses the use of filters to

decrease distortion. It also grants the utilities the right to deny

service to major power-quality polluters if they do not clean up the

power to certain specifications before they return it to the line.

This can be done relatively inexpensively at the source and would

substantially relieve the overloading of the

neutral wire. At this time few of the utilities in the United States

have exercised that right.

How can there be zero current on the neutral grounding wires?

There are isolation devices that allow current down the down-grounds

in fault or lightening situations, but would act like an open circuit

(an example of an open circuit is a light switch in the off position)

under normal circumstances. Installation of these devices on all the

down grounds would be one way to ensure no current returns to the

substation via the earth while maintaining the safety benefits of a

grounded system.

How does "dirty" power affect you?

Unlike the electrical earth currents of the 1950's, electrical earth

currents today are not a clean 60 Hz sine wave. They are as "dirty"

with high frequencies as the power that returns to the substation.

They are the return current that does not flow on the wire. As the

prevalence of non-linear, time-varying loads increases, the return

power and the earth currents get dirtier. High frequencies cause

health problems at very low voltages in part because the energy is

higher with higher frequencies. Because of the high frequencies,

modern electrical ground currents are actually worse for you at the

same voltage than the "clean" electrical earth currents that caused

problems in the

1950's. Ground Currents: An important factor in electromagnetic

exposure by Dr. Duane Dahlberg deals in detail with the importance of

exposure to electrical ground currents. We are all in contact with

electrical ground currents when we do such everyday activities as

wash the dishes, shower, or sit on the lawn. Did the utilities ask

your permission to make you part of an electrical circuit?

In addition to being part of an electrical circuit because of the

electrical earth currents, each person is capacitively coupled to the

wires running around them through the walls, floor, and ceiling of

the building where they live or work. Electrical engineers know about

capacitive coupling, but they have also been taught that the result

is insignificant. They have not read or choose to ignore publications

like Cross Currents by Robert O. Becker, MD in which he discusses the

extreme sensitivity of the human body to electromagnetic

fields/radiation and Electromagnetic Fields and the

Life Environment by Karel Marha, Jan Musil, and Hana Tuha in which

they describe the symptoms humans experience with chronic exposure to

high frequencies. The description of the symptoms of exposure to high

frequencies in Electromagnetic Fields and the Life Environment

touches on all of the most minor and puzzling symptoms of Chronic

Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), as well as, all of the widely accepted ones.

The symptoms of CFS, Fibromyalgia, and Gulf War Syndrome are all

virtually identical to those of Radio Wave Sickness. In addition to

causing Radio Wave Sickness, exposure to high frequencies seems to be

linked to a myriad of health problems including depression, Attention

Deficit Disorder (ADD), cancer, infertility, miscarriages, birth

defects, allergies, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease and

Lou Gehrig's Disease. In fact, the California Department of Health

study "Final Report of the California EMF Program: An Evaluation of

the Possible Risks from Electric and Magnetic Fields (EMFS) from

Power Lines, Internal Wiring, Electrical Occupations, and Appliances"

concludes that exposure to powerline emf is a risk factor for these

illnesses. The news has been full of speculation over why the rates

of these ailments have increased over the last several years. The

experts seem unable to find a cause. There is, however, a logical

reason. If you look at the statistics, the proportion

of electricity used for non-linear, time-varying (electronic) loads

has been on the rise and continues to rise. The growth in non-linear,

time-varying loads seems to relate proportionally to the increase of

modern ailments listed above. There is evidence linking exposure to

high frequencies to each of these modern ailments. Until recently

only a few people realized the source of the exposure. People are

becoming sick who should not be at risk. Unbeknownst to them, they

are being exposed to high

frequencies through exposure to "dirty" power. Without an

oscilloscope or a meter, it is impossible for the average person to

detect. (See the simple, easy to use Ubiquitous Pollutant Meter

outlined in "A Ubiquitous Pollutant"). Electricity is the most widely

accepted and most poorly understood of the modern conveniences.

Symptoms of Radio Wave Sickness (excerpted from No Place To Hide April


Neurological: headaches, dizziness, nausea, difficulty concentrating,

memory loss, irritability, depression, anxiety, insomnia, fatigue,

weakness, tremors, muscle spasms, numbness, tingling, altered

reflexes, muscle and joint paint, leg/foot pain, "Flu-like" symptoms,

fever. More severe reactions can include seizures, paralysis,

psychosis and stroke. Cardiac: palpitations, arrhythmias, pain or

pressure in the chest, low or high blood pressure, slow or fast heart

rate, shortness of breath. Respiratory: sinusitis, bronchitis,

pneumonia, asthma. Dermatological: skin rash, itching, burning,

facial flushing. Ophthalmologic: pain or burning in the eyes,

pressure in/behind the eyes, deteriorating vision, floaters,

cataracts. Others: digestive problems; abdominal pain; enlarged

thyroid, testicular/ovarian pain; dryness of lips, tongue, mouth,

eyes; great thirst; dehydration; nosebleeds; internal bleeding;

altered sugar metabolism; immune abnormalities; redistribution of

metals within the body; hair loss; pain in the teeth; deteriorating

fillings; impaired sense of smell; ringing in the ears.

Can "dirty" power cause over-billing?

Yes, "dirty" power can cause the utilities to over-bill you for the

power you use. The standard disk-type electrical rate meters were

designed for "clean" 60 Hz power. They are standardized for measuring

"clean" 60 Hz power. With the dramatic increase in non-linear,

time-varying loads the power that is delivered to your house or

business is no longer "clean" power. The "dirty' power can cause the

rate meters not designed for use with "dirty" power to read


Stop Electrical Pollution

The only known cure for Radio Wave Sickness is to stop being exposed

to high frequencies.

The Solution: Both the Electrical Power Research Institute (EPRI) and

the Institute of

Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) have identified remedies

for electrical ground currents. Formulate and enact legislation in

each state requiring utilities to use identified remedies to

eliminate electrical ground currents and clean up "dirty" power.

In Wisconsin, Rep. Barbara Gronemus has introduced legislation that

defines the desired endpoint - no current on the grounding rods

except during fault situations - and allows the utilities to pick the

best solution for each situation. Wisconsinites call your

representative and senator and ask them to be strong supporters of

Rep. Gronemus's Electrical Pollution Bill (2001 Assembly Bill 754).

If you are not sure who your senator and representative are or how to

reach them, call the Legislative Hotline at 1-800-362-9472. This

truly is a bill that was introduced on behalf of all citizens of


SNIP check out the web site for more!


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