- say scientists -
Daily Mail Reporter
Cancer causing chemicals are released by energy-saving bulbs
when they are switched on, scientists said
Energy saving bulbs emit cancer causing chemicals it was claimed last night as new fears were raised about their safety.
Scientists said they should not be left on for long periods of time or placed close to a person's head because they release poisonous materials. The EU has unveiled plans to phase out 'normal' incandescent bulbs by the end of next year as they try to cut carbon emissions.
They should not be used by adults to read or kept near a child's head all night, the experts said.
While it is already known that harmful amounts of Mercury are released if one of the new 'green' bulbs is broken, the latest research shows other carcinogenic chemicals are emitted when they are switched on.
The German research shows that the chemicals are released as a form of steam.
The harmful substances include phenol - a poison injected by the Nazis to kill thousands of concentration camp victims during World War II - and the human toxins naphthalene and styrene.
Tests showed that the materials used to make the lamps are probably responsible for their potentially harmful side effects.
Andreas Kirchner, from the Federation of German Engineers, said:
The report on German television forced the country’s environmental protection agency to issue a warning against 'public hysteria.' The Department for the Environment has insisted that the bulbs are safe.
Dr Michelle Bloor, lecturer in Environmental Science at Portsmouth University, told the Daily Express:
Rays of Rash - Toxic Light Bulb Investigation