Wednesday, November 25, 2009

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Well That's Wacky

by Reb Akiva at Mystical Paths

Knowing I tend to be over informed about technical matters, a friend asked me about spending time near a wireless hub. I did a little research (to confirm what I thought I already knew) and determined that wifi is very low powered and works at non-penetrating frequencies, and therefore isn't considered dangerous (though there are a few people extremely sensitive, basically allergic, to electronic transmissions who can be bothered).

This compares with a cell phone, for example, which we place up next to our skull and millimeters from our brain, that does operate at a penetrating frequency and at 20 times the power of a wifi transmitter. Much more concern there. (Use a bluetooth earpiece, very low power very short range transmitter.)

As with all such newfangled devices, we learn more about the real concerns or impact of them (versus their benefits) over time.

The new one for me today is CFL's, Compact Florescent Lights. You know, the "new" light bulbs that are little twisted versions of the big overhead lights in most offices. Everyone has been replacing their regular light bulbs with these over the last 5 years because:

a. They use 1/5th the power of a regular light bulb.
b. They last 3 times longer than a regular light bulb (not the 10 times longer advertised).
c. Because of a + b, they're advertised as "greener" than regular light bulbs.
d. In some States and Countries, regular light bulbs have been outlawed (due to c).

Last year came the health warning that CFLs contain a not-insignificant amount of mercury, a dangerous chemical. Because of this, if you break a CFL you need to: open the doors and windows, clean the area while wearing a respirator (some of the mercury vaporizes), clean the area with gloves and dispose of the gloves and cleaning material afterwards, and dispose of the breakage as toxic waste. (Really.)

Today comes the warning that CFLs are emitting UVA and UVB radiation and can cause skin cancer! The UK Health Ministry, and now republished by the Israeli Health Ministry, instruct that you should NEVER come closer that 30cm (1 foot) to a lit CFL bulb, and should spend no more than 1 hour per day near CFL bulbs. Got that? Your light bulbs can give you skin cancer. Oh, and by the way, this has been known for a decade (10 years!) (Source)

Sheez. LaBriut (to your good health).

1 comment:

  1. GREAT post Akiva. When I learned about this, I determined that I would NOT as in NEVER have those things in my home, because it's a bit worse than mild mannered Akiva describes.

    The toxicity is so bad that if one breaks in a room, that room needs to be vacated and locked up for the hazmat team to come and clean out your home.

    "It is not debated whether mercury is toxic, and mercury compounds are thousand times more toxic than mercury alone. It is debated whether the amount of mercury used is high enough to cause any damage. Mercury is about 1000 times more toxic than lead, also merucry and lead have synergistic relationship."

    "Mercury is basically sand in your engine, it affects body on very basic level, inhibiting enzyme production, which are responsible for all bodily functions. Mercury toxicity can affect any and every organ especially nervous system and it can affect any function of your body. You can get weak, tired, digestive issues, etc etc."

    It's not a matter of the 'frying pan' or the 'fire' - it's just pain deadly, combined with all the other chemical nonsense infiltrating food, air, water, clothing, furniture. Would you even have suspected high fructose corn syrup?? Read all labels!


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