According to a March 14th, 2009 report in the U.K. Daily Mail, British physicians are noting an upsurge in skin rashes and swelling amongst patients with eczema, psoriasis, and lupus as a result of increased usage of low-energy CFE light bulbs. The problem is that these skin disorders can actually be light-sensitive.
Amongst those physicians speaking out included Dr Robert Sarkany, who has backed calls by patient groups for the Government to give medical exemptions for those at risk. Dr Sarkany, who is a photodermatologist at St John's Institute of Dermatology, St Thomas' Hospital, in London, said he has treated patients for rashes caused by exposure to low-energy lamps. Some suffer from lupus, a disease of the immune system that can cause skin to become hypersensitive to sunlight. But some lupus sufferers are also reporting an adverse reaction to fluorescent lights. In many cases, it's a burning sensation. The CFEs actually emit more ultraviolet light, which is identified as the problem, since the patients experience no symptoms when exposed to traditional incandescent light bulb because the ultraviolet light is so dim.
The warning comes as British shops start to clear their shelves of traditional bulbs, which are being replaced by more energy-efficient versions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Large retailers have already stopped selling conventional 100-watt bulbs, the most popular size.
In the United Kingdom, the conventional 100-watt bulbs will be banned effective September 2009, along with frosted 60-watt and 40-watt bulbs, followed by most others before 2012. Afterwards, shoppers will then be able to buy only halogen bulbs - which resemble normal bulbs but use 70 per cent of the energy - or compact fluorescent ones, which use just 30 per cent of the energy.
In the United States, we have more time to make the switch, but many American stores are now reducing shelf space devoted to conventional bulbs to open up additional shelf space for CFEs. In addition, with the influence of prominent cap-and-traders who are part of the carbon cult, to include Utah's RINO Governor Jon Huntsman Jr., it will only be a matter of time before even more legal restrictions begin to pop up, initially on the Left and Right Coasts.
Because the environmental lobby fast-tracked this solution for political reasons, it was not adequately vetted. As a result, there is still another problem with CFEs - mercury. Each bulb contains a tiny amount of mercury, which is considered poisonous. Break one of these bulbs, and......well, just watch the YouTube video emebedded below to find out:
The $2,000 story in the video has since been debunked somewhat. One should use rubber gloves to clean up the area, but professional intervention is no longer considered necessary now. The mercury contained in a CFE is less than that in a mercury thermometer. Read the latest EPA guidance HERE, which distinguishes between CFE bulbs and mercury thermometers.
But you may still be barred from just casually disposing of a broken CFE in the trash, depending upon your local and state laws. And now there may be unforeseen health hazards for those using the bulbs.