IMHO there is less threat from all analog chemical processes than everything digital because in terms of overall volume of waste generated, analog products generate muich less waste because analog users are a far smaller group than digital photographers.
This sounds awfully callous to me, perhaps more so than you meant.
Originally Posted by Jim Chinn
And not because I also practice digital photography.
I don't remember the source but I first became aware of this through an article about a photographer. it may have been in the UK version Black and White magazine.
Originally Posted by Phong
The simple truth of the matter is that countries such as India, Bangledesh, Malaysia, have next to zero envrironmental regulations or protections for workers or child labor laws. The cold calculations of profit leads recovery companies to send monitors and computers there where labor costs pennies compared to the US or EU.
There have been effrots in the US congress to curtail such practices by US companies or there subs. I don't know if any such legislation has been passed. It could be that the fee mentioned for California is a result of such legislation on a state level.
"Fundamentally I think we need to rediscover a non-ironic world"
I have a couple of thoughts on this matter. I believe a number of users are having their photo finishing done by labs unto RA4 paper whixh saves only the fim processing. I believe that all of these empty inkjet cartridges going to the landfill will become an enviromental headache. In short I believe that digital offers no gain.
Andy... look up your chems MSDS sheets (most are online at mfr websites). The ones you have listed generally have the following instructions if a working solution is swallowed: Do not induce vomiting. Drink lots of water. Call your physician.
Note - working solution... I'd hate to see how 2% Glacial would rip apart the lining of your esophogus (better get Nexium!)
P.S. - Sprint Chemistry is being used by a lot of schools now, one reason is the fact it is basically odourless and has a very low enviro. impact.
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In my opinion, as long as people had a place to "dump" things, that's what they did. As has been mentioned to some Mexico and India etc are still that place.
But as the world get smaller and we realize the damage that we are doing to ourselves and our children we have come up with ingenious ways to recycle.
I believe in a few years that we will be recycling almost everything, not necessarily by choice but because we can't keep creating landfills and dumps.
So my answer is that both analog and digital can safely recycle it's products in the future even though digital is extremely wasteful with its built in obsolescense.
On the other hand I don't see where end users of analog like us, have ever created many problems except for the silver that can easily be captured. There may have been problems at one time though, in the manufacturing processes that were used.
I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.
This is an interesting read:
I'm not a chemist, so I won't comment, but based on other government publications I've read I think a lot of it is a little over the top. And it doesn't even mention mercuric chloride, which scares me because I've read that some toners have it though I don't know which ones. They also seem to be overstating the toxicity of pyrogallo, though maybe I'm reading that wrong.
This list is very useful I think:
"I am an anarchist." - HCB
"I wanna be anarchist." - JR
I don't tone my prints. Mainly because I am at least aware and concerned about my darkroom effluents but also because I understand that to achieve permenance, the print must be toned to finality which changes it's appearance much more than I like. I hope that I can find a paper to replace Polymax with the same great d-max so that I don't have to rely on toning to boost them.
That is called grain. It is supposed to be there.
Just about every thing we do in life causes polution. Driving to work burns fuel, but also involves the manufacture of an entire car every 7 to 10 years. Eating these days involves throwing away lots of plastic packaging, fuel to transport the food from half way around the world, tons of ferilizer and manuer run off, etc. I think the correlation between $ and pollution is very high. With that in mind, digital must pollute more since it costs more (not scientific at all I know). Of cource Kodak Park in Rochester is a very polluted place from years of chemical manufacture. I know when I lived there, there were major environmental concerns among the neigbors of Kodak.
All in all I suspect photography (either form) contributes very little to the overall pollution in the world. Of course every little bit hurts and it all adds up to a lot of damge caused by humans. But in a few hundren million years the earth will ahve recovered and a new species will be messing it up:rolleyes:
As for toning, one of the biggest health problems growing in th world is the lack of selenium in our diet. It is a trace mineral/metal that we all need. Ask any diabetic what it would be like if they didn't have selenium. Selenium in our rapidly post agrarian society is seeing the results of depleted selenium in the soil. I have no fear that the little bits of selenium I use to tone with are going to impact negatively.
As for the 2% glacial acetic acid, your stomach produces an acid that is far more potent and toxic. I would not reccomend drinking the glacial acid, but then I don't reccomend getting sick, and having the stomach acids hit your esophagus either. We do have those times, when we do get sick and we can't avoid it. No one ever worries about how that impacts the environment.
The steel wool, is the kind without any soap incorporated. just put it in the spent fixer before you dump it.
Most of the ingredients in photo chemistry were all mined or recovered from the earth. Most the chemicals in computers and their periphals are synthesized in the lab to make the plastics and such. Anyline dyes are nasty and highly poisonous.
If we started to throw out our cameras at the rate computer/digital stuff gets tossed, I'm sure Jim Galli would find the dump and restore our past treasures and sell them on apug to help this site. He is our best person for recycling.