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Saturday, April 4, 2009
WND Repeats Misleading CFL Claims
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A March 30 WorldNetDaily article by Drew Zahn uncritically repeated misleading claims WND had earlier reported in 2007 about compact fluorescent lights, referencing "a Maine woman quoted $2,000 for cleaning up a broken CFL in her home."

As we detailed, WND editor Joseph Farah, who write the earlier article, didn't tell his readers that, according to experts quoted in the news article upon which he based his report, it's not necessary to spend $2,000 to clean up a broken CFL. Farah's misleading scare tactics even got him enshrined at the urban legend-debunking website Snopes.

Zahn also touted how the Maine Department of Environmental Protection "studied the dangers of broken CFLs and the adequacy of recommended cleanup procedures," and then issued"eight new recommendations for usage and cleanup of CFLs." Zahn does not note that the Maine DEP study he cites also reported that "The pre-study cleanup guidance was generally found to be sound." That would be the guidance that Farah mostly ignored in his 2007 article.

Further, Zahn, like Farah before him, curiously omits mentioning amid the scare tactics they peddle the one essential -- and simple -- thing recommended to lower levels of mercury released by a broken CFL: venting the room where it was broken. As the Maine DEP stated, "A short period of venting can, in most cases, significantly reduce the mercury air concentrations after breakage."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EDT

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