Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Health and Human Resources
Virginia Department of Health
State Board of Health
Petition 127
Petition Information
Petition Title Educate the Citizenry in Certain Environmental and Health Matters Pertaining to Extremely Low Frequency Magnetic Fields in Power Line Right-of-Ways
Date Filed 10/28/2010    [Transmittal Sheet]
Petitioner Kenneth Strong 
Petitioner's Request


The petitioner requests that the Board of Health adopt, promulgate and enforce a policy aimed at educating the public and decision makers in the environmental and health effects of extremely low frequency magnetic fields located inside high voltage electric power line right-of-ways.
Agency's Plan


The Agency anticipates it will consider public comments, information submitted by the petitioner and any additional information before determining what appropriate action is required.
Comment Period Began 3/28/2011    Ended 12/12/2010
Virginia Register Announcement Submitted on 10/28/2010
The Virginia Register of Regulations
Published on: 11/22/2010     Volume: 27  Issue: 6
Agency Decision Take no action [Transmittal Sheet]    
Response Date 3/7/2011
Decision Publication Date Published on: 3/28/2011     Volume: 27  Issue: 15
Agency Decision Summary


The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) issued a comprehensive report on the health effects of high voltage transmission lines to the Virginia General Assembly on October 31, 2000 which stated, "the Virginia Department of Health is of the opinion that there is no conclusive and convincing evidence that exposure to extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields emanated from nearby high voltage transmission lines is causally associated with an increased incidence of cancer or other detrimental health effects in humans." Based on information presented by the petitioner and other public comments received from November 30 to December 12, 2010, there is still no collective body of evidence available which might supercede the agency's prior conclusion. More research by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and other public health agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, is needed.  VDH environmental epidemiology staff will continue to periodically review information obtained pertaining to this and any other enviromental health issue.
The Board of Health recognizes and appreciates the petioner's desire to promote a policy to protect public health. While the Board of Health does have a responsibility to educate the citizenry on health and environmental matters and to formulate a program of patient and community health education services, there is insufficient evidence to warrant adoption, promulgation and enforcement of a policy aimed at ELF magnetic fields located inside high voltage (115 kilovolt and above) electric power transmission line right-of-ways, at this time. 

Contact Information
Name / Title: Dwight Flammia, Ph.D.  / Public Health Toxicologist
Address: Virginia Department of Health
109 Governor Street
Richmond, 23219
Email Address:
Telephone: (804)864-8127    FAX: (804)864-8131    TDD: ()-