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Mercury in flourescents

A while back there was a discussion about whether or not flourescent
lamps contained mercury. One of our list members was told by a
manufacturer that the lamps do not contain mercury. It seems that this
is not correct. See the following press release from Phillips:


Quoting from the press reolease:

"With these new lamps, homeowners will continue to benefit from the 

energy efficiency and long life of fluorescents, but also significantly

reduce the amount of mercury emitted into the environment," said Ed 

Crawford, Vice President of Strategic Marketing for Philips Lighting 

Company. "As more people embrace this technology, we can help limit the

amount of mercury that could find its way into the ecosystem," added 


More than 550 million fluorescent lamps containing mercury are disposed

of each year in the United States.

The introduction of the ALTO Home Light product line brings Philips 

another step closer to incorporating ALTO Lamp Technology into 80 

percent of its fluorescent products. 

Easily identified by their ALTO Green End Caps, the Philips lamps 

employ a unique capsule dosing process, combined with a chemical 

buffering system. The lamps contain more than 80 percent less mercury 

than standard fluorescents, with no loss in lamp performance compared

standard fluorescents.* As a result, ALTO lamps are the first 

low-mercury fluorescent tubes to pass TCLP at all stages of lamp life.

TCLP is the EPA's test to measure substances dissolved in the

At this time, mercury cannot be completely removed from fluorescent 

lamps without diminishing lamp performance.

end quote.

So it seems that all flourescent lamps use mercury, some more, some