San Francisco requires posting of cell phone emission levels

June 27, 2010

San Francisco once again serves as the trend setter by becoming the first U.S. city to require retailers to post notices detailing the amount of radiation emitted by the cell phones they sell. [San Francisco Chronicle]

The Board of Supervisors passed the measure originally with only one dissenting vote. San Francisco mayor, and Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor, Gavin Newsom has been an early supporter of the measure.

The action stems from the long-simmering debate over potential health effects from extensive cell phone use.

The law doesn’t ban cell phones because of radiation, but does require information to be posted concerning the “specific absorption rate”– a measure of radiation registered with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). All information must be posted next to the product. Consumers will also be informed as to where they can obtain further information.

The FCC has already adopted limits for safe exposure to radiation. The measurement shows the amount of radio frequency energy people absorb in their bodies when talking on a cell phone.

Small business advocates lobbied against the law, claiming it was another example of government intervention.

The new law takes effect in February 2011.



  1. Saveslocounty says:

    Since the FCC already regulates the radiation absorption rate and mandates that all consumer products must meet that requirement, then SF clearly is not the trend setters as touted. I guess they don’t have any real issues in SF such as crime, economy or immigration to be concerned with. Oh, my mistake, they voted to solve the immigration problem by a boycott of Arizona made products and services. What a waste of time at taxpayers expense.

    (3) 7 Total Votes - 5 up - 2 down
  2. PaulJones says:

    Good Call San Francisco. Sometimes you do things right.

    (-3) 9 Total Votes - 3 up - 6 down
  3. Cindy says:

    Not a bad idea. Cell phones do emit radiation. We have been hearing about this for quite sometime yet there seems to be very little information about it. Our kids are using cell phones and we don’t have the slightest idea what long term effects this might have. Good for SF, it’s a great start in the right direction. I don’t see this as having more gov intrusion in our lives, I see this about informing the public. We can never have too much information, IMO. It’s when we don’t have enough that worries me.

    (3) 11 Total Votes - 7 up - 4 down

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