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Published on August 6th, 2012 | by Chelsea


Study Finds CFLs Damaging to Human Skin

August 6th, 2012 by  

A study out of Stony Brook University found that compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs can damage human skin because of the UV emitted by them. The study is a repeat of a European test which looked at the levels of UV coming through cracks in phosphor coatings on all CFL bulbs.

The researches noted that incandescent bulbs did not affect healthy skin cells.

To combat the harmful emissions from CFLs, researchers suggested avoiding the use of the bulbs at close distances and adding a glass covering.

Source: Stony Brook University News
Image: gillmar via Shutterstock

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About the Author

is a former newspaper reporter who has spent the past few years teaching English in Poland, Finland and Japan. When she wasn't teaching or writing, Chelsea was traveling Europe and Asia, sampling spicy street food along the way.

  • CFLs’ lost their sparkle in remote isolated Western Alaska when news about their mercury content leaked out. This is another nail in their coffin.

    Shouldn’t they also be looking for cracks in the phosphor of linear fluorescent tubes? After all, they’re pretty much the same technology.

    • Bob_Wallace

      I can believe that.  There was so much dishonest stuff concerning the tiny bit of mercury in CFLs that I’m sure some people were badly misinformed.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Walter, I’m sure glad to hear that the people in Western Alaska got their thermals in a bunch over the 4-5 milligrams (mg) of mercury in a typical cfl.

      Hate to see a few milligrams of mercury added to the thousands of pounds of mercury from gold mining that goes on in the area. “EPA’s proposed rule will regulate the amount of mercury air emissions from point sources at mines-stacks and vents. As it is proposed, the rule would limit emissions for pre-treatment processes (roasters and autoclaves) to 149 lb/ton of ore processed at both new and existing mines. The Donlin Creek Mine intends to process 22 million tons of ore per year. That means that under the proposed rule, Donlin Creek could be permitted to emit over3200 pounds of mercury per year, just from pre-treatment processes.”

      I’m sure that a few broken CFLs would have made a huge difference.  

      BTW, 453,592 mg in a pound.  Donlin Creek =~ 1,451,494,400 broken CFLs.  But only if the EPA manages to hold Donlin emissions down to 3,200 pounds.

      That’s 1.45 Billion broken CFLs….

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