Do Electric Vehicles Emit EMF? Here's What We Know.

Electromagnetic radiation, also known as EMF, can be found all around us, from the TV screens we watch to the cell phones we use to stay in touch with our friends and family. It's impossible to completely avoid EMF. However, some sources of EMF, such as electric vehicles, carry more risks than others.

The evolution of electric vehicles has been quite fascinating, and the market continues to provide an array of options to choose from. It’s important to understand the EMF Radiation Risks from Electric Vehicles and know what we can do to protect ourselves as much as we can.

Electric vehicles are less dangerous than their gas-guzzling counterparts, but they do still pose some risks in terms of EMF emissions. Is compromising our health worth saving some money at the gas pump?

The Difference Between Electric And Hybrid Cars

There are a lot of new electric cars on the market nowadays and with good reason. The promise of more efficient, cleaner, and quieter travel is too good to ignore. However, this comes with some potential downsides—namely the risk of EMF radiation. As we all know, the world has become increasingly technological in recent years and our lives are more interconnected than ever. This digital revolution is being felt not only in our day-to-day lives but also through all devices that require electricity for power like electric cars.

Electric cars are propelled solely by an electric motor and charged by a rechargeable battery that is connected to the vehicle. This eliminates the need for fossil fuels like gasoline to power the vehicle. The difference between hybrid and electric cars is that in a hybrid car, there is an engine in addition to the electric motor. This allows you to drive at high speeds on highways with no issue. The car will automatically switch from electric power to gas depending on whether you're driving in the city or on the highway.

Are Electric Cars Safe?

There are a lot of common questions and concerns surrounding electric cars and their EMF radiation. 

We know that electric cars emit low-level electromagnetic radiation (EMR) and that some who are sensitive to it can have difficulty in the vehicles. But is this a good enough reason not to get an electric car? 

Dr. Joel Moskowitz, Director of the Center for Family and Community Health at the University of California Berkeley, warns that hybrid and electric cars may be cancer-causing  as they emit increased levels of ELF.

However, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) doesn't think that EMF radiation is a significant health risk. They also say that we don't know definitively if electric cars are safe because the research on the subject is still in the early stages.

In fact, the EPA coordinates EMF exposure recommendations in the United States. It generally relies on the ICNIRPBut the question still remains, how accurate are these guidelines?

Numerous peer-reviewed laboratory studies conducted over several decades have found biological effects from limited exposures to ELFs (Extremely Low Frequency) and EMFs (Electromagnetic Fields). These studies suggest that the EMF guidelines established by the self-appointed ICNIRP are inadequate to protect our health. 

Based on the research, more than 240 EMF experts have signed the International EMF Scientist Appeal, which calls on the World Health Organization to establish stronger guidelines for ELF and radio frequency EMF. Even if EMF measurements comply with the ICNIRP guidelines, occupants of hybrid and electric cars may still be at increased risk for cancer and other potential health risks.

According to Theodore P. Metsis, Ph.D., an electrical, mechanical, and environmental engineer from Athens, Greece, modern conventional gas- and diesel-powered automobiles incorporate many EMF-emitting devices.

EMFs in a car in motion with brakes applied + ABS activation may well exceed 100 mG. Adding RF radiation from Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, the cell phones of the passengers, the 4G antennas laid out all along the major roads plus the radars of cars already equipped with, located behind, left or right of a vehicle, the total EMF and EMR fields will exceed any limits humans can tolerate over a long period of time.”

Related Source: Radiofrequencies in Cars - A Public Health Threat

How You Can Protect Yourself While Driving an Electric Vehicle

While experts broadly agree that plug-in vehicles are a more climate-friendly option than traditional vehicles, they can still have their own environmental impacts, depending on how they’re charged up and manufactured. More than that, there is a health concern about driving electric cars related to the electromagnetic radiation (EMR) that they emit. 

Aside from having an ELF-emitting battery that powers your vehicle, there can also be several sources of EMF radiation including your dashboard controls, car alarm, push-button starts, Bluetooth connections, and WiFi (a form of RF radiation). 

EMR comes from charging an electric car and powering the onboard systems. There is not much information about how safe these levels of radiation are to humans, but if you are concerned about the possible hazards, you can limit your exposure by purchasing a car that has no wireless connections or emissions control devices like a Toyota Prius Prime. 

An electric car might be better for your wallet and environmental impact, but if it means risking your health with high amounts of EMR, it is probably not worth it!

There are ways to lessen your exposure to EMFs while driving. Some examples include: 

  • Turning your phone on Airplane mode (Don’t worry, you can still use your GPS if needed)
  • Keeping your phone at a distance away from you until you reach your destination
  • Stepping outside your vehicle in an area with better reception if you need to make a call 
  • Turning off your vehicle's computer systems if they are not in use (such as the onboard computer that controls the media system).

Whatever vehicle you choose to drive, know that electric vehicles and gas-powered cars come with some carbon and EMF emissions. As technology with electric vehicles continues to advance, we know that there is no way to completely eliminate our exposure to EMFs.  Aside from the tips above, when it comes to driving an Electric Vehicle, you can also protect yourself by using EMF radiation shielding cases such as an anti-radiation laptop case, or an RF Shielding Blanket. These are just added protective measures you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones. You can find yours here.