Generally speaking, the environmentalists are going after all kinds of things (nuclear-power/energy, whaling, weapon-manufacturing, etc) for a good cause, and that's okay. I'm more worried that some environmentalists groups have been called and black-listed as "terroists" by some authorities for complete false accusations, and that's pretty serious because it's happening world-wide.
Anyway, I do agree with the increasing difficulty of shipping photo chemicals, which I only know from a consumer's point of view. Here in Japan, it seems just as bad. So, I keep stocking Selenium toner because it will probably be the first thing we will lose in this market because it's so toxic. Kodak is the only company supplying it, and if it's gone, I don't know if I can get it shipped from another country...
Now I think, just like the issues on bio-fuel, hybrid cars, etc, the world needs better information to understand. Good education probably will give some impact on how we think of the use of these things that we are constantly been told as good or bad, etc, but being told by who? You know that's where we have to start questioning.
Interesting thread and I wonder just what courses we have to follow to ensure the continuance of analog photography regardless of what ensues.
On another note, I thought that I had read remarks at the time of the newly emerging digital past concerning how the manufacturing process for digital were much more endangering to the environment then the processes for film production. I use to work for electronics firms and some of the chemicals used for production were highly toxic and environmentally dangerous. If your at least 45 and above you may remember at one time or another where companies were caught quite often dumping behind their buildings. Of course what could be worse to the human environment then nerve gas and other agents being stored in caverns in leaking drums or massive amounts of carbon dioxide in the air because of corporate greed.
Mercury emmisions, compact flourescent v. incandescent with coal-fired electricity (source; EPA):
There seems to be something to add to your reference that was left out for good or bad.
The mercury emission from a coal fired electrical plant is distributed over the earth in the atmosphere and the mercury emission from the bulb is concentrated at the place where it is disposed of and then this concentrate gets into the soil as a direct contaminant. Assuming recycling, even that is lossy and some mercury would probably get into the environment.
What is worse, 2 mg of mercury in a small stream running out of a waste site or 4 mg of mercury being emitted from the stack of a power plant and dispersed over a whole city? The amount per unit area is actually lower in the scond case, I suspect.
IDK which is worse, but I assume that they are both equally bad in spite of one being neary 2x greater than the other. The problem is, no one really knows for sure and that is part of the whole problem. Some say NO mercury should be placed into the environment; that it should be a closed loop with no loss at all or should not be used.
This is the problem. And, considering the amount of coal used for lighting vs coal used for running other equipment, lighting is only a part of the problem, not all of it. If everyone converted to fluorsecent lights and then lighting use was included in overall power consumption, we might not even be able to detect the difference.
People just jump quickly to a conclusion. 'This is better than that', with a 'statistic' to show, but it has been said that anything can be proven with statistics.
Mercury is bad. We should eliminate its use or escape into the environment. The fluorescent bulb is not all of the answer and may not even be the best one.
I can make choices about what happens to the mercury in a CF lamp. I can dispose of it by taking it to hazardous waste. That 4mg can be in a closed loop or at least kept out of the groundwater. And in so doing, I can reduce coal-burned emmissions by 7.6mg. This is in addition to the other considerable benefits associated with using CF's. The key is to get people to adopt their use *and* dispose of them intelligently...until a better solution is available.
Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
Are you using a flat screen monitor or a tube monitor? If so, one contains selenium and arsenic and the other contains lead and mercury. The computer contains both selenium and arsenic. If it shorts out, and you smell a garlic like odor, then that is the arsenic. It happened to me once.
What is the power consumption of the monitor vs a reading lamp?
Do you use a gas stove or electric stove?
Do you use a gas furnace or an oil furnace, or maybe even coal?
Do you wash your fixed prints in running water or still water? Either way, the wash water contains hypo and silver.
Do you use selenium toner and then wash your toned prints in running water? That puts selenium into the environment.
I could go on and list all of the questionable things we all do. I agree with you and was not criticizing. I'm saying that we seem to just concentrate on one thing when a 'fad' strikes the media, but what we should be doing is working on ALL waste products and open loops. Some of us are and some are not, so my notes above are just to show how many many there are.
I agree with you completely.
Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
In my household we're pretty maniacal about recycling absoluetly every item and material that we can. I do not live in the land of curbside recycling. We have a wall of bins in our garage and we have to shchlep everything to appropriate drop off points. Some items must be horded till we have enough to justify a trip.
Computers and electronics go to a recycling center. My spent pyro goes to hazardous waste. My fix goes to the recovery tanks at a university photo dept. I try to minimize water consumption and release to the environment (I'm on septic).
I spend a lot of thought and energy on this stuff. I try to make the best decisions. I spent a fortune putting high efficiency HVAC in...I'll spend another one on tighter doors and windows. We're gradually transitioning to CF's because I think that on balance, with the present choices, they make the most sense, imperfect as they are.
Part of my motivation for all of this is to be the best environmental-citizen/photographer I can be. Handling chemistry responsibly makes much more sense to me than the more 'libertarian' approach.
Agree 100%! BTW, Ilford now make selenium toner (also Maco).So there are alternatives if KRST ends up RIP.
...at the risk of asthma and a weakened immune system.
Originally Posted by jstraw
My door and windows fit REALLY BADLY -- so I wear more clothes in winter...
In civil engineering school we were taught, "The solution to pollution is dilution." And that was in the 1990's . . .