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IARU Administrative Council Resolution Seeks to Rein in Electromagnetic Interference


The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Administrative Council has called upon International Telecommunication Union (ITU) signatory nations to take steps to ensure that the operation of “electrical apparatus or installations of any kind, including power and telecommunication distribution networks,” does not cause harmful interference to Amateur Radio operations. The Council adopted a resolution expressing concern with the “rapid and largely uncontrolled growth” in devices that generate RF energy “as an unnecessary and undesirable consequence of their operation.” It cited such devices as switching power supplies, power inverters, plasma video displays, and wireline telecommunication systems that employ such technologies as Broadband over Power Lines (BPL). 

The AC said new technologies such as wireless power transfer are likely to be deployed widely in the near future, and it expressed “deep concern” that present standards, regulations, and enforcement resources are inadequate to protect radio services, including Amateur Radio, from harmful interference.

The Council’s action, which came during its annual meeting (see attached "Summary Record") on September 27 and 28 in Albena, Bulgaria, followed the recommendation of IARU EMC Coordinator Thilo Kootz, DL9KCE. The resolution encourages IARU member-societies and regional organizations “to pursue implementation of the resolution as a matter of the highest priority,” requests standards-setting bodies and regulators to fully support the resolution’s objectives, and implores designers and manufacturers to “minimize radio spectrum pollution emanating from their products.”

The AC also revised and updated a 2008 resolution concerning operating practices. Noting that Amateur Radio relies on self-regulation for effective use of its allocations, and that “poor operating behavior adversely affects the enjoyment of all radio amateurs,” the Council encouraged all radio amateurs to operate proficiently and with “proper consideration for others using the Amateur Radio bands.” The Council urged IARU member-societies to teach and promote correct operating behavior.

The Council endorsed and recommended the ethical principles set out in the booklet, Ethics and Operating Procedures for the Radio Amateur by John Devoldere, ON4UN, and Marc Demeuleneere, ON4WW. Recognizing, however, that the detailed operating practices the booklet discusses are subject to occasional revision, the AC encouraged each IARU region “to consider this booklet, with a view to adopting the ethical principles therein, including any regional variations that might be felt appropriate.”

Council members also reviewed IARU positions on each WRC-15 agenda item relating to or affecting Amateur Radio, including Agenda Item 1.4, the addition of a new allocation within the band 5250-5450 kHz, which the AC called “a high priority for the Amateur service.” WRC-15 will consider “the possibility of making an allocation of an appropriate amount of spectrum, not necessarily contiguous, to the Amateur Service on a secondary basis within the band 5250-5450 kHz.”

In other actions, the Council:

  • expressed support for Region 1 in its effort to obtain a CEPT proposal for post-WRC-15 conference agenda items for worldwide harmonization of 160 meters, harmonization of 6 meters and an allocation at 3.4 GHz.
  • approved a contribution of $1000 for the IARU International Beacon Project.
  • adopted the IARU Emergency Telecommunications Guide for use by the IARU member-societies to strengthen Amateur Radio disaster preparedness, response, and mitigation. The Guide will be released soon.
  • adopted various strategies related to improving Amateur Radio disaster preparedness, response, and mitigation and to promote the role of Amateur Radio in such activities to the general public and to governmental and non-governmental organizations.
  • created the ad hoc IARU Member-Society Relations Project Team and adopted Terms of Reference for the project. Following its 2013 meeting, the Administrative Council announced that it was “studying ways to work with the non-IARU societies to ensure that the interests of all the amateurs are represented in those countries where the IARU member-society fails to do so.”
  • adopted a system to provide more efficient remote monitoring of certain ITU meetings that may impact Amateur Radio.
  • reviewed The Plan for the Development of Support for Amateur Radio Frequency Allocations 2012-2017.
  • reviewed and updated the September 2013 version of the IARU Spectrum Requirements, the working document that sets out the spectrum requirements of the Amateur and Amateur-Satellite services.
  • expressed the importance of obtaining the ITU Advance Publication Information (API) numbers from administrations for Amateur-Satellite projects, so that information about the number of operating satellites can be maintained for frequency coordination and interference-resolution purposes. The IARU will work with administrations to establish protocols for satellite frequency coordination and to raise awareness of the satellite regulations.
  • identified International Telecommunication Union (ITU) meetings at which IARU representation will be required for the remainder of 2014 and for 2015, and reviewed plans for representation at those meetings.
  • received information about the Hamsphere Initiative from Martti Laine, OH2BH, and will review the initiative and seek further information from the project leaders.

As 2015 will mark the 150th anniversary of the ITU, the Administrative Council adopted the theme “ITU & IARU: Celebrating 150 years of Advancing the Telecommunication Art" for the next World Amateur Radio Day, April 18, 2015.

The AC is responsible for the policy and management of the IARU and consists of the three IARU international officers and two representatives from each of the three IARU regional organizations. Attending the meeting were IARU President Tim Ellam, VE6SH/G4HUA; Vice President Ole Garpestad, LA2RR; Secretary Rod Stafford, W6ROD; regional representatives Hans Blondeel Timmerman, PB2T, Dennis Green, ZS4BS, Reinaldo Leandro, YV5AM, José Arturo Molina, YS1MS, Gopal Madhavan, VU2GMN, Wisnu Widjaja, YB0AZ and recording secretary David Sumner, K1ZZ. Also present as observers were Ramón Santoyo, XE1KK, from Region 2, and Don Beattie, G3BJ, observer and President-elect from Region 1.

The Administrative Council will hold its next in-person meeting near Yogjakarta, Indonesia, in October, 2015 in conjunction with the IARU Region 3 Conference.





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