America isn’t the only place experiencing civil unrest right now. We’ve all seen the footage of angry demonstrators, and sometimes riots. In Europe, it’s cell phone towers that are going up in flames.
Some 16 towers have been torched in the Netherlands. Footage from a CCTV shows a man in a black cap pouring the contents of a white container at the base of a cell tower in a Dutch business park. Flames burst out, and the man escapes into the night.
In Britain, around 50 fires targeting towers and other equipment have been reported. Towering infernos were also reported in Ireland, Cyprus and Belgium.
What’s up with this?
A Facebook post tells the story …
A photo of a burned tower with the message, “Nobody wants cancer & COVID-19. Stop trying to make it happen or every pole and mobile store will end up like this one.”
Folks have been worried for years that cell phones increase the risk of cancer. A study released in 2018 by the US Department of Health is pointed to by those expressing concerns …
Rats were exposed to radiation from mobile phones for nine hours a day — every day for two years — starting before they were even born.
A number of male rats developed heart tumors.
Pretty scary stuff. But the findings aren’t so black and white. The study does continue to say …
No cancer link however was found for the female rats … or in any mice. In fact, exposed rats lived longer than those in the control group … leading a scientist to comment, “Exposures used in the studies cannot be compared directly to the exposure that humans experience when using a cell phone” … even for heavy users.
In January, cell tower conspiracy theories were inflamed again when a Belgian doctor suggested a link between 5G and COVID-19. Even before that, the New York Times traced the 5G anxiety to a Florida physicist named Bill Curry. He published incorrect research showing a correlation between rising frequency of radio waves and tissue damage in the brain.
Mr. Curry failed to consider that human brains are shielded from such radiation by their skin and skulls, but a “proof” chart he made has become gospel in cellular technology conspiracy theories world-wide.
Tin foil hats aside, scientists say there is no link between 5G and COVID-19. What’s more, the coronavirus is spreading in places without 5G connectivity, such as Iran and Malaysia.
But as the old saying goes, “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes.”
What Is 5G Exactly?
5G technology enables lightning-fast Internet with greater bandwidth.
Picture downloading a movie to your phone or tablet in seconds, widespread virtual reality, feasible autonomous driving and more.
All wireless networks operate via radio frequency (RF) waves. 5G uses higher “millimeter waves” … whereas radio waves are on the order of centimeters.
We’re surrounded by electromagnetic radiation all the time — from television and radio signals to sunlight.
The radio waves (and millimeter waves) used for mobile phones are “non-ionizing” … which means they lack sufficient energy to break DNA or damage our cells.
“Ionizing” radiation, however, CAN harm us. That’s why we wear sunscreen … and why doctors limit our exposure to x-rays and the gamma rays used in cancer treatments.
But the radiation used by mobile phones — 5G especially — has led some to worry about increased health risks.
Is 5G Dangerous?
The World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) have classified all RF radiation as “possibly carcinogenic”. But eating pickled vegetables and using talcum powder are in the same category. (Alcoholic drinks and processed meats are in a higher category, as the evidence for harm is stronger.)
Dr. Myrtill Simko of SciProof International has spent decades researching the issue. She says there’s no evidence wireless communications — 5G or earlier versions — harm the immune system as claimed by the tower arsonists.
While 5G Isn’t Impacting Our Health,
COVID-19 IS Impacting 5G
With the coronavirus forcing people inside, they’re spending more time on the Internet to work, learn, shop and entertain … in short, increasing the demand for a faster Internet.
And 5G promises a boost to the next wave of manufacturing … the Internet-of-Things (IoT), remote health care, drones, smart cities and more … equating to $13.2 trillion dollars of global economic output by 2035.
Because 5G networks require more equipment, towers and fiber-optics than previous generations, companies offering 5G infrastructure will see a boom. On the consumer side, smart phones and laptops must be upgraded to utilize 5G.
There are three stocks I’m watching that are riding this wave …
No. 1. Acacia Communications, Inc. (Nasdaq: ACIA, Rated C) develops, manufactures and sells high-speed coherent optical interconnect products for use in long-haul, metro and inter-data center markets. It also provides semiconductors, including low-power, application-specific integrated circuits and silicon photonic integrated circuits.
No. 2. Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL, Rated C+) is expected to roll out 5G handsets by the end of this year, although it faces competition from Samsung and Huawei. And there may be delays in the typical September rollout due to the coronavirus.
No. 3. NVIDIA Corporation (Nasdaq: NVDA, Rated C+) offers the graphics processing unit (GPU), which plays a major role in the transition. Traditional wireless signals processing is based on decade-old algorithms. To deploy 5G networks, however, the telecom industry is looking for potential solution in AI and deep learning, which is an area of expertise for NVIDIA.
If you’ve got the stomach for risk and the appetite for big returns, you can be bold and aggressive with any or all of these plays.
And if you’re the cautious type, try sleeping with your phone away from your bed at night. Not only will it give you peace of mind … it will promote a healthier bedtime routine.
All the best,