Another controversial Tel$tra phone tower given the go ahead

Jonathon Reynolds 18 October 2007 16

The ABC Online has a news story about objections by the Fadden and Maccarthur communities to a phone tower being placed on a hill near a child care centre given planning approval despite strong opposition.

I wish this group the best of luck if they wish to pursue a legal challenge, from my past involvement in similar circumstances, the Federal Communications Act and related codes of practice virtually guarantees the Telcos the ability to put such facilities anywhere they want.

Naturally the current Stanhope Government is not going to object, especially with the new money spinner of their Utilities (Network Facilities Tax) Act 2006.

In terms of disguising telecommunications towers Larson Camouflage in Arizona, USA seems to do a resonable job. Though I am not sure that there would be much call for towers shaped like giant cacti in this country.

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16 Responses to Another controversial Tel$tra phone tower given the go ahead
caf caf 4:40 pm 18 Oct 07

Not that much of one 🙂 300kHz is long wave, below AM radio.

Maelinar Maelinar 3:41 pm 18 Oct 07

@caf – I was looking at a similar item of confrontation as a basis for my commentary using RPS 3 as the tower standard.

Perhaps there is a discrepancy between the transmission frequency of the tower and the transmission frequency of mobile handsets ?

roccon roccon 3:08 pm 18 Oct 07

My take on the matter…someone correct me if I am wrong.

Its not a Telstra tower, even though they are probably building it. ( I am not a fan of Telstra but they do need to be defended in this case)

It is a 2100Mhz 3G tower originally planned for “3” (Hutchinson), however Telstra became involved when it bought a half share of the infrastructure “3” was installing in the main capitals of Australia. Telstra had no 3G presence as they were mainly rolling out CDMA upgrades at the time. The tower belongs to 3GIS (Hutchinson/Telstra). It is a low power tower, which is why there are so many in Canberra (like the ones on roundabouts) They cover small areas with high speed data and phone.

Pretty sure Telstra would like to get out of this partnership as they now have NextG up and running on their older towers. nextG is cheaper to set up as fewer towers are needed and most of the infrastructure was already there.

It is Hutchinson / 3GIS that should be getting grilled over these towers..

Mr Evil Mr Evil 2:18 pm 18 Oct 07

Yeah, but in all honesty, who takes any notice of Pratt anymore?

Whenever I see him bleating on TV, I use it as a good excuse to walk away and get another cup of tea.

Pandy Pandy 2:08 pm 18 Oct 07

I know of people who live next door who have complained about the ugliness of it. To back up their outcry they have used laughingly; “What about the children?” arguement. Isn’t Sasella a member of the Tuggeranong Community council and a Lib eral member? Thus the protestatons from Pratt.

Why is Jonathon who champions for better mobile coverage in Gunaghlin worried about what happens on the other side of the country?

caf caf 1:43 pm 18 Oct 07

*dons rival specialist beret*

Mobile phone transmissions are well above 300kHz, in Australia between about 800MHz and 2100Mhz.

*removes beret, despite it looking quite fetching*

What’s the hazard area for those (microwave) frequencies?

Maelinar Maelinar 1:28 pm 18 Oct 07

*dons specialist cap*

RPS 3 – the Radiation Protection Standard for Maximum Exposure Levels to Radiofrequency fields for 3kHz to 300kHz is set by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA).

RPS 3 allows for a radiation hazard area of 0-3 metres around the transmission site. Generally this is observed by putting up a fence.

RPS 3 is a precautionary approach to EMR, and is consistent with health considerations and the principles of ecologically sustainable development.

An observable feature of radiation that if exposure at regular intervals occurs outside the hazard area, and within an EMR field, it is possible to develop radiation affected illnesses.

Say for example, your bed was on one of those invisible EMR lines and you were there for 6-8 hour doses. Same kind of effect as those kids who grew up under powerlines all getting leukemia at once – strange and highly controversial and circumstancial, yet still balanced against the principles of ecologically sustainable development.

Thumper Thumper 1:16 pm 18 Oct 07

And weasels haven’t ever been seen near an Australian mobile phone tower.


I think not.

Mr Evil Mr Evil 1:13 pm 18 Oct 07

I read on the internet that mobile phone towers cause mother’s milk to curdle, and they have also been linked to several cases fish falling from the sky in Portugal.

Ralph Ralph 1:08 pm 18 Oct 07

and luddites.

Thumper Thumper 1:02 pm 18 Oct 07

I heard that they give hedgehogs acne….

Deano Deano 12:56 pm 18 Oct 07

A couple of corrections are required in the article. To say the tower is close to a child care centre stretches the truth more than a little. It is near the Karalika Drug Rehabilitation centre which has child care facilities, and even then it is not even that close. I suppose it sounds better to encourage outrage using a childcare centre than a group of druggies in rehab.

The second correction is to the statement “Residents in Macarthur and Fadden”. No, actually it is just a couple – the rest of us welcome the tower to improve the poor mobile coverage we have. Mr Sassella, of the so called community action group, just happens to live next to the tower site and I would suggest is much more concerned about his property value than any childcare centre. It is not like it is going to be in his backyard or anything. The tower site is in a reserve next to a water reservoir, some distance away from houses.

Just another winging NIMBY.

Mr Evil Mr Evil 12:47 pm 18 Oct 07

But they can cause cancer if you place your head within 1mm of the boxes at the top of the pole – so they should be banned altogether!

Won’t somebody think of the children?!

Ingeegoodbee Ingeegoodbee 12:40 pm 18 Oct 07

I wish the whinging NIMBYs the best of luck! A 3G tower went up in Kambah despite all the wailing and grashing of teeth.

GnT GnT 12:38 pm 18 Oct 07

If it didn’t go ahead the residents would complain about poor reception. You can’t win.

S4anta S4anta 12:37 pm 18 Oct 07

Perhaps something like this would suffice.

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