10 Steps to Dispose of a Broken Light Bulb

We wrote about the safe disposal of CFLs before. Here are the 10 steps to dealing with a broken light bulb, according to the UK government (see image).

In addition, if you break a low energy light bulb you should evacuate the room for at least fifteen minutes. It is not recommended to use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of broken pieces and you should not inhale any dust. The British authorities want to replace all incandescent light bulbs by 2011 in order to fight climate change but professor John Hawk, spokesman of the British Dermatology Foundation, warns that low energy light bulbs can cause severe problems for people with skin sensitive to light, who already can’t spend a lot of time in places illuminated with fluorescent lighting such as hospitals or factories. Now, the 10 steps might seem a little bit over the top but the fact that CFLs contain mercury is not to be taken lightly. However, there has been quite a big debate online and in the papers whether some of the commission’s £144 million budget was spent wisely on the 10 Step Campaign of dealing with a broken environmentally friendly light bulb. Especially since Nick Harvey, the Commission spokesman, said nothing of mercury but rather said the problem to be the broken pieces of glass of the bulbs on which people can cut their fingers… More about it in the Daily Mail. A solution to both climate change and health issues related to the mercury in low energy light bulbs could be the newly developed EcoLEDs, mercury-free LED bulbs. Read TreeHugger’s answers to: Is Mercury from a Broken CFL Dangerous? Thanks Marta for the tip. Via: Gizmodo and Construnario (link in Spanish).

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