Navigation Links
LED products billed as eco-friendly contain toxic metals, study finds
Date:2/10/2011

Irvine, Calif., Feb. 10, 2011 Those light-emitting diodes marketed as safe, environmentally preferable alternatives to traditional lightbulbs actually contain lead, arsenic and a dozen other potentially hazardous substances, according to newly published research.

"LEDs are touted as the next generation of lighting. But as we try to find better products that do not deplete energy resources or contribute to global warming, we have to be vigilant about the toxicity hazards of those marketed as replacements," said Oladele Ogunseitan, chair of UC Irvine's Department of Population Health & Disease Prevention.

He and fellow scientists at UCI and UC Davis crunched, leached and measured the tiny, multicolored lightbulbs sold in Christmas strands; red, yellow and green traffic lights; and automobile headlights and brake lights. Their findings? Low-intensity red lights contained up to eight times the amount of lead allowed under California law, but in general, high-intensity, brighter bulbs had more contaminants than lower ones. White bulbs had the least lead, but contained high amounts of nickel.

"We find the low-intensity red LEDs exhibit significant cancer and noncancer potentials due to the high content of arsenic and lead," the team wrote in the January 2011 issue of Environmental Science & Technology, referring to the holiday lights. Results from the larger lighting products will be published later, but according to Ogunseitan, "it's more of the same."

Lead, arsenic and many additional metals discovered in the bulbs or their related parts have been linked in hundreds of studies to different cancers, neurological damage, kidney disease, hypertension, skin rashes and other illnesses. The copper used in some LEDs also poses an ecological threat to fish, rivers and lakes.

Ogunseitan said that breaking a single light and breathing fumes would not automatically cause cancer, but could be a tipping point on top of chronic exposure to another carcinogen. And noting that lead tastes sweet he warned that small children could be harmed if they mistake the bright lights for candy.

Risks are present in all parts of the lights and at every stage during production, use and disposal, the study found. Consumers, manufacturers and first responders to accident scenes ought to be aware of this, Ogunseitan said. When bulbs break at home, residents should sweep them up with a special broom while wearing gloves and a mask, he advised. Crews dispatched to clean up car crashes or broken traffic fixtures should don protective gear and handle the material as hazardous waste. Currently, LEDs are not classified as toxic and are disposed of in regular landfills. Ogunseitan has forwarded the study results to California and federal health regulators.

He cites LEDs as a perfect example of the need to mandate product replacement testing. The diodes are widely hailed as safer than compact fluorescent bulbs, which contain dangerous mercury. But, he said, they weren't properly tested before being marketed as the preferred alternative to inefficient incandescent bulbs, now being phased out under California law. A long-planned state regulation originally set to take effect Jan. 1 would have required advance testing of such replacement products. But it was opposed by industry groups, a less stringent version was substituted, and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger placed the law on hold days before he left office.

"I'm frustrated, but the work continues," said Ogunseitan, a member of the state Department of Toxic Substances Control's Green Ribbon Science Panel. He said makers of LEDs and other items could easily reduce chemical concentrations or redesign them with truly safer materials. "Every day we don't have a law that says you cannot replace an unsafe product with another unsafe product, we're putting people's lives at risk," he said. "And it's a preventable risk."


'/>"/>

Contact: Janet Wilson
janethw@uci.edu
949-824-3969
University of California - Irvine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. LearnSomething Brings Phil Keough On Board to Spearhead Retail Products and Services
2. Health & Sports: Former NBA Star John Salley Endorses STEMTech Stem Cell Nutrition Products
3. For a Healthier, Cleaner Fitness Regimen - Venture Products Shock Athletic(TM) Mats and Interlocking Flooring
4. Human Dental Technology Leads to Breakthroughs for Pet Dental Health at Sergeants Pet Care Products, Inc.
5. Summit VetPharm Enters Agreement With MWI Veterinary Supply to Distribute Vectra(R) Products
6. GNC Announces Entry to Chinas Nutritional Products in Partnership with Bright Food
7. First Coast Service Options (FCSO) Expands Use of Burgess Products
8. FDA Appoints Highly Qualified Scientific Experts to Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee
9. VIDEO from Medialink and Juice Products Association: Teens Who Drink Juice Have Healthier Diets, Eat More Whole Fruit
10. Sibu Beauty Unveils Three New Products From Sea Buckthorn Berries – as Seen on The Doctors and The Dr. Oz Show
11. Global Medical Products (GMDP) Selects Mina Mar Group as Its Corporate Advisor And Updates
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/29/2016)... ... April 29, 2016 , ... ... infants born with severe congenital diaphragmatic hernia have better survival rates if surgery ... diaphragmatic hernia (CDH)—a condition where the diaphragm fails to form completely, letting abdominal ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... , ... April 29, 2016 , ... Mobility Designed ... put pressure on the armpits, the M+D Crutch evenly distributes body weight from the ... wrists and hands when using the crutches than with other crutches. , Co-founders Max ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... April 29, 2016 , ... Melanoma is the deadliest type of skin ... blame for the majority of skin cancer deaths. More than 10,000 people are expected to ... at diagnosis is 62, it is the one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... ... April 29, 2016 , ... Reltok Nasal Products proudly announces that Boston ... and neck/ear, nose and throat specialty, has added the KOTLER NASAL AIRWAY™ to its ... is a newly patented safety device secured by nasal surgeons onto the floor ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... April 29, 2016 , ... ... feature Grassland Dairy Products, Inc. in an upcoming episode, airing third quarter 2016 ... century of churning cream into butter, Grassland Dairy Products, located in Greenwood, Wisconsin ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/28/2016)... 28, 2016 Research and Markets ... Surgery Products Market 2016-2020" report to their offering. ... The global plastic surgery products market is ... the period 2016-2020. , ,The growing adoption of laser ... growth of the market. Lasers are used to treat ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... , April 28, 2016 ... , George Phillips und ... Unternehmens    ArisGlobal®, ein führender ... Sciences, gab heute bekannt, dass neue Führungskräfte ... Unternehmens gestoßen sind, die vielfältige Erfahrungen mitbringen. ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... -- Treato , the single largest ... that it has been named a Cool Vendor by ... Sciences, 2016, Stephen Davies , Michael ... life-science- oriented analytics, algorithms and smart machine technology in ... medication ingestion, and analyze unstructured information.   ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: