THREE new 3G mobile phone antennae have been approved by Castle Point Council - but some councillors remain concerned ab-out the effects on people's health of the technology.

The antennae will be added to the mast at the EDF substation near West Wood on Rayleigh Road by Arqiva Ltd on behalf of mobile phone company O2.

The 3G technology allows video messages to be sent between mobile phone handsets and increases the speed of internet connections.

To do this it gives off a powerful signal and councillor Bill Sharp is worried this could be harmful.

He said: "The Government has not yet put forward scientific evidence that proves beyond any reasonable doubt that they are not dangerous.

"I am worried that if we go ahead we will have nothing but problems in the future."

The Government uses guidelines published by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection in 1998 before 3G technology was widely available.

Dr Xenon Sienkiewiez, a scientist with the Health Protection Agency, admitted there was no scientific evidence to say for certain that 3G antennae did not have a harmful effect on health.

He said: "Overall I still feel that the balance of evidence does not show that signals like 3G are more damaging than any other sort of signal.

"But often it does come down to different perceptions of what is safe."

Mr Sharp was on the planning committee in 2006 when members voted to refuse permission for the installation of three new GSM antennae at the same site.

He objected on the grounds that they were not satisfied the antennae were safe.

But on appeal the applicant Arqiva was granted permission.

In light of this, at the latest council meeting, corporate director for the environment Kim Fisher advised councillors they should approve the latest application as it too would likely be approved on appeal, which would cost the council money.

He said: "I think we should be prepared to take the cost to force the government to come back with scientific evidence actually says, yes we can guarantee there is no harm to the public from these masts."