The old saying goes, "where there is smoke, there's fire." I think we all are at least subconciously suceptible to thinking this way vis a vis the cancer risks in the media. We hear so much about these risks that, even if the claims seem absurd, we worry if there isn't something there. After all, if the media is concerned, surely the balance of evidence must be at least close - there is probably a small risk or increase in mortality.
Not so. Take cell phones. We have heard for decades concern about cancer risk from cell phones. But they are not even close to dangerous, missing danger levels by something like 5 and a half orders of magnitude.
Cell phones do not cause cancer. They do not even theoretically cause cancer. Why? Because they simply do not produce the type of electromagnetic radiation that is capable of causing cancer. Michael Shermer explains, using basic physics:
...known carcinogens such as x-rays, gamma rays and UV rays have energies greater than 480 kilojoules per mole (kJ/mole), which is enough to break chemical bonds... A cell phone generates radiation of less than 0.001 kJ/mole. That is 480,000 times weaker than UV rays...
If the radiation from cell phones cannot break chemical bonds, then it is not possible for cell phones to cause cancer, no matter what the World Health Organization thinks. And just to put the "possible carcinogen" terminology into perspective, the WHO also considers coffee to be a possible carcinogen. Additionally, it appears that politics and ideology may have trumped science in the WHO's controversial decision.