What bugs me, as a retired chemist, is that fluorescent bulbs have
always contained mercury:
Mercury toxicity depends on the chemical state it is in. The EPA advice
cited is just plain nuts to me.
I use CFL's for energy savings but I'm damned if I want congress to tell
me what to do and if I ever break one or throw it away, what I do with
it is my business.
Note that incandescent lamps also emit UV; where this may be a
concern, halogen lamps with their hard (UV absorbing) glass
construction are a better choice and, in particular, those with
special UV coatings.
With respect to fluorescents and UV, here's what GE has to say:
"The amount of UV produced by standard fluorescent lamps, such as
those in your office, home, or school, is not hazardous and does not
pose a major health concern. In fact, a paper by the National
Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) explores this subject in
more detail. It cites a study in which it was determined that UV
exposure from sitting indoors under fluorescent lights at typical
office light levels for an eight hour workday is equivalent to just
over a minute of exposure to the sun in Washington, D.C. on a clear
day in July."
I guess myself and several dozen folks that have auto-immune problems I
associate with are mistaken. We have all noticed that we turn beet red
and begin sweating after more then 15 minutes in a store or any building
that has uncovered fluorescent lighting. The same reason we all have to
wear sunblock everyday all day just to go outdoors.
The studies you mention are with normal folks that don't have
auto-immune problems. Just a minute of exposure to sun light, outdoors,
will put me in bed for a day. I am in Fl.
I thank you for your research but I can not agree with you or the people
that are pushing the CFL's Chuck
My comments were not intended to suggest linear fluorescent or CFL
lamps pose little or no risk to someone with a serious medical
condition such as your own; rather, it was to point out that
incandescent and to a somewhat lesser extent halogen lamps also emit
UV radiation and, consequently, those who are acutely sensitive to UV
radiation should still take the appropriate precautions when using
these sources -- in other words, incandescent lamps do not get a free
For the rest of us, the use of CFLs in a residential environment where
ambient light levels are typically one-tenth to one-twentieth that of
an office space and where our length of exposure may be one-third to
one-half that of a normal workday, we might be looking at the
equivalent of a two to three second exposure to daylight.
My apologies for any confusion.
Fluorescents produce less UV than is present in a similar quantity of
CFLs and other triphosphor fluorescents of higher color temperature
(3500 Kelvin and higher) produce even less UV, since the blue-emitting
phosphor component in those absorbs and utilizes much of the 365 nm
wavelength (unlike most other fluorescent lamp phosphors).
- Don Klipstein ( firstname.lastname@example.org)
That guy is a jack ass and so are you, I bet he is paid by
incandesant bulb manufacturers, he quotes the KKK, he wants more coal
burning without advocating better cleaner technologies that would
reduce its pollutants, one of which is Mercury. Did you know that in
burning coal the energy used to operate a 100w incandesant releases
2-4 times as much Mercury into the air you breath today over the life
of the bulb as a cfl contains. You do realise that the inneficent
electric heater we know as an incandesant bulb actualy only outputs
3-7% of its energy consumed as light you see, and the rest is heat.
Now thats a good policy to continue, run 11, 100w incandesants and you
have a 1000w electric heater, run your AC more to remove that heat and
release more mercury into your air, thats dumb. Has anyone ever cared
about tube flourescents impact from Mercury, I bet they have many
times as much mercury in them.
I have no need to throw those cfls into the garbage, HD has a nine
year warranty and I am going to use it, I dont even need a reciept, My
HD charge has it on permenant record.
With all due respect, Bob, the guy is, to put it politely,
ill-informed. Several of us have already pointed out here that
incandescent lamps will still be available after 2014 and that you
will *NOT* be required to use CFLs if your preference is to continue
using incandescent or halogen sources.
The bottom line is, do you want the government to dictate everything you
do from the time you flush your toilet (1.6 g.) in the morning to
putting out the cfl light at night? I like cfl's and figure led's will
supplant them as even more energy efficient and save me money. I just
don't want to be forced to use them.
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