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ARPANSA and the ACMA working together on EME

31 March 2015

Radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic energy—known as 'EME'—is emitted by mobile phones and other telecommunications equipment. To make it easier for members of the public to understand how EME is regulated, ARPANSA has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).

This formal commitment between the two agencies is an extension of their existing collaboration and information-sharing, and will ensure that EME regulatory arrangements are developed from a sound evidence base.

CEOs Carl-Magnus Larsson and Chris Chapman shaking hands after signing the Memorandum of Understanding

CEOs Carl-Magnus Larsson (ARPANSA, left) and Chris Chapman (the ACMA) sign the Memorandum of Understanding.

The agencies have distinct but complementary roles in EME regulation:

  • ARPANSA is the Australian Government’s primary authority on radiation protection and nuclear safety. Based on an assessment of relevant scientific research and international guidance, ARPANSA sets the human exposure limits for RF EME emitted by telecommunications equipment.
  • The ACMA is Australia’s communications regulator. To make sure EME exposure from equipment is kept low, the ACMA applies the ARPANSA EME exposure limits to consumer devices (such as mobile phones) and telecommunications facilities (such as mobile phone base stations).

ARPANSA has published new fact sheets on EME and health that consolidate and update previously available information in a handy new format. The ACMA have also created a new consumer EME hub, which provides clear and concise information on a range of topics in one easy location.

ARPANSA and the ACMA have also released joint statements on EME topics of public interest.

The ARPANSA and the ACMA MoU and joint statements can be found at ARPANSA and the AMCA Memorandum of Understanding.