ITU standards and guidelines

Overview of the ITU

ITU (International Telecommunication Union) is the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies – ICTs. For nearly 150 years, ITU has coordinated the shared global use of the radio spectrum, promoted international cooperation in assigning satellite orbits, worked to improve communication infrastructure in the developing world, and established the worldwide standards that foster seamless interconnection of a vast range of communications systems. From broadband networks to new-generation wireless technologies, aeronautical and maritime navigation, radio astronomy, satellite-based meteorology and converging fixed-mobile phone, Internet and broadcasting technologies, ITU is committed to connecting the world.

The Plenipotentiary Conference which is the top policy-making body of the ITU approved Resolution 176 Human exposure to and measurement of electromagnetic fields (Busan, 2014).

Within the Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T) of ITU, ITU-T Study Group 5 (SG5) is the lead study group on ICT environmental aspects of electromagnetic phenomena and climate change.

SG5's Working Party 2 studies EMF issues under Question 7/5: "Human exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) due to radio systems and mobile equipment". The resulting international standards (ITU-T Recommendations) provide high-level frameworks for the management of human exposure to EMFs emitted by telecommunication equipment (best practice regulatory guidelines), and also offer guidelines for the assessment of human exposure based on existing ITU-T Recommendations and standards produced by other standards development organizations (SDOs).

To achieve these goals, Question 7/5 looks at measuring techniques, procedures and numerical models for evaluating the electromagnetic fields stemming from telecommunication systems and radio terminals.