IN 2006, with my background as a telecommunications consultant, I spoke at the city's wireless hearings. I drew on research from around the world, primarily on the health and safety of this technology and its negative biological effects on people, plants and animals. I also pointed out that Philadelphia was not a leader in either the science of this technology nor had it done even one study on its safety.

Anyone who attended the hearings knows that Earthlink was neither prepared nor had a plan. While those from the city flattered themselves as "innovators" rushing to bridge the "digital divide," Historic City Gardens' focus was on the health and safety of all people, regardless of background.

Since these hearings, the Bioinitiative Report was released, the work of an international group of scientists, researchers and public-health specialists. Two thousand studies were analyzed and assessed regarding the safety of electromagnetic radiation. (See

Germany, a country more experienced in the effects of electromagnetic radiation due to surveillance equipment from the cold war, has advised its citizens to avoid using wireless equipment as its safety is not yet known.

Congressional staff meetings at the federal level regarding the safety and health effects of electromagnetic fields continue to transpire.

At this point, we commend Mayor Nutter for not further supporting this white elephant.

Historic City Gardens continues to be concerned about the effects of the many cell towers and antennas in the range of Lemon Hill and Porters House properties in Fairmount Park, the ultimate location for our 55-acre community-based historic botanical garden. We implore the city to work with us toward the removal of these towers and antennas, given the historical horticultural significance of these properties.

Faye Deckter

Historic City Gardens