Supposedly the more energy we use leaves an imaginary footprint on Earth. I digress.
I want to tell you a little known fact about compact fluorescent bulbs.
About 10 years ago, we were sold the idea of saving money and at the same time we could conserve energy. The bulbs last longer than regular bulbs and they used less energy.
Sound likes a win-win for everyone right? Read the rest of the story.
What some people did not realize is that the advantage of electrical bills savings comes with a sacrifice. That sacrifice comes in the form of potential health problems.
Those are some big claims. How can my health be affected by a light bulb?
I am going to tell you, but before I do, let me tell you the reason I was compelled to write this article.
I have a friend who took his lovely family to Disney World in Florida, so I volunteered to check on his house for him. For some reason, I noticed that his garage lights were using CFL bulbs.
I was not too concerned because my friend is financially conscious however, the same day I saw something on the news that blew me away.
The news report stated that compact fluorescent light bulbs contain Mercury. Mercury is a very toxic substance that has to be contained and disposed of properly if released.
Like all fluorescent lamps, CFLs contain mercury, which complicates their disposal. In many countries, governments have established recycling schemes for CFLs and glass generally.
Some of you may have seen the old blood pressure cuffs and thermometers that used Mercury.
What are the signs and symptoms of exposure?
Federal and State laws require Mercury to be disposed of properly. It can be a hassle to find a hazardous waste facility. However, you should not throw the bulb in the trash. Here are the safe cleaning procedures and the Environmental Protection Agency contacts in the event of a spill.
I think light bulb manufacturers got it right by offering us an alternative to more expensive lighting, but they have potentially exposed us to a bigger problem and hassle.
The CFL light bulbs are more expensive anyway. In my opinion, the spiral design is too unique.
I am glad I did not follow the trend. I like the traditional looking bulbs and I think CFL bulbs are not as bright.
I do not know how much Mercury is contained in the bulbs nor do I know what Mercury levels are considered hazardous to humans. I do know that any amount of Mercury exposure is dangerous for a pregnant woman.
You need to watch this video. What a hassle just for one light bulb?
Did you know that CFL bulbs contained Mercury? If you did, are you more of less concerned?
Would you make a sacrifice on your health to save a few bucks? Do you have any CFL bulbs in your house and have you noticed any savings?
What do you think about the made up word “carbon footprint”? Do you think we need to do more to conserve energy?
Now that you have the facts about CFL bulbs, does it matter to you at all?
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