Wednesday, 27 April 2011

There I was minding my own business when Big Green tried to give me cancer

They say that those things that don't kill you make you stronger.

So what do we do with those things that may kill you?

The list of potentially fatal items has increased by one lately with a report from German scientists that energy saving light bulbs - CFLs - could cause cancer.
Fears have been reignited about the safety of energy saving light bulbs after a group of scientists warned that they contain cancer causing chemicals.
Their report advises that the bulbs should not be left on for extended periods, particularly near someone’s head, as they emit poisonous materials when switched on.
Peter Braun, who carried out the tests at the Berlin's Alab Laboratory, said: “For such carcinogenic substances it is important they are kept as far away as possible from the human environment.”
The bulbs are already widely used in the UK following EU direction to phase out traditional incandescent lighting by the end of this year.
But the German scientists claimed that several carcinogenic chemicals and toxins were released when the environmentally-friendly compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) were switched on, including phenol, naphthalene and styrene.
Andreas Kirchner, of the Federation of German Engineers, said: “Electrical smog develops around these lamps.
“I, therefore, use them only very economically. They should not be used in unventilated areas and definitely not in the proximity of the head.”
British experts insisted that more research was needed and urged consumers not to panic.
Dr Michelle Bloor, senior lecturer in Environmental Science at Portsmouth University, told the Daily Express: “Further independent studies would need to be undertaken to back up the presented German research.”
The Department for the Environment insists the bulbs are safe, despite the fact that they contain small amounts of mercury which would leak out if the glass was broken.
Advice on its website states: “Energy efficient light bulbs are not a danger to the public.
“Although they contain mercury, limited at 5mg per lamp, it cannot escape from a lamp that is intact.
“In any case, the very small amount contained in an energy efficient bulb is unlikely to cause harm even if the lamp should be broken.”
The latest report follows claims by Abraham Haim, a professor of biology at Haifa University in Israel, that the bulbs could result in higher breast cancer rates if used late at night.
He said that the bluer light that CFLs emitted closely mimicked daylight, disrupting the body's production of the hormone melatonin more than older-style filament bulbs, which cast a yellower light.
The Migraine Action Association has warned that they could trigger migraines and skin care specialists have claimed that their intense light could exacerbate a range of existing skin problems.
The list of organisations warning about the dangers and other problems of these things seems quite large. Why is their voice not heard by policy makers?

What does “Further independent studies would need to be undertaken to back up the presented German research” actually mean?

Whenever you read the term "independent research" you can be sure it's a euphemism for "scientists on the public payroll who agree with this policy".

Why is it that everything green turns to crap and costs a heap of money?

If I thought that greenies meant well then I'd have less of a problem with them but, unfortunately, they seem to be made up of people who get their kicks by telling others how they should live their lives.

It now seems that not only are they going to annoy me by making me have to buy these crappy, dim lights but that they could give me cancer, as well.

(Nothing Follows)


Anonymous said...

Yep. You got it. Energy saving light bulbs were all about trying to give you cancer. You personally. The whole cutting the cost of lighting your home by 90% thing was just an undesirable side effect. Good to see that you've twigged, and your hysterical reaction is just entirely appropriate.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you're one of life's anxious Chicken Littles. Don't panic, little fellow. The sky is not going to fall on your head.

Ellen K said...

I have tried the CFL's and found that while they are six times more expensive, they don't last six times as long. And while there's much made about the mercury content of the bulbs, most folks who use them will not dispose of them properly. This means mercury will be leeching out into groundwater from landfill sites. But this is just one of many such "green" intiatives that are going to cause more problems than they are worth. Corn ethanol is top of the list. It decreases fuel efficiency. It takes more energy to make than it saves. Yet Obama is upping the content in fuel mixes to fifteen percent. Electric cars are another problem because those battery packs will have to go sometime. And they contain lead.

Jack Lacton said...

Good to see that Fudgie doesn't have a sarcasm sensor...

Anonymous said...

Ha ha. Nice try.

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