Saturday, January 05, 2008

Fashionable light bulbs and that darned mercury

Low energy light bulbs are justly praised -- but there's a wee little mercury problem:
...Official advice from the Department of the Environment states that if a low-energy bulb is smashed, the room needs to be vacated for at least 15 minutes.

A vacuum cleaner should not be used to clear up the debris, and care should be taken not to inhale the dust.

Instead, rubber gloves should be used, and the broken bulb put into a sealed plastic bag - which should be taken to the local council for disposal.
Used bulbs are likewise toxic waste.

I've written about this before. The risk for adults is probably very low, but it's infants and children we need answers for. It's quite annoying to have one division of government strongly encouraging adoption (esp. in Canada) and another sending us across the city to a toxic waste dump. In the current state of affairs, the bulbs need prominent toxic waste labels on the packaging.

Where are those darned toxic-but-not-dangerous LED bulds we were promised two years ago?

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