November 18, 2010, - 3:57 pm

Going Green Could Kill You: About Those Reusable Bags

By Debbie Schlussel

I don’t know about you, but I’m getting tired of the inconvenience and unhealthy results of “going green” at your local retailer.  Yesterday, the handle of the paper bag from my supermarket (which won’t provide plastic bags) tore off in my hand, the bag fell, and a glass bottle of tea fell out and smashed right next to my foot. That never happened with plastic bags. The green movement continues to be the more annoying fad (other than grills–gold and jewel-studded teeth covers).


Green Makes You Sick

And now, there are other, more dangerous results from reusable bags, including high lead and harmful bacteria levels.  First, there’s the discovery of a significant amount of fecal bacteria in the bags.

Those reusable grocery bags meant to replace the thin plastic ones can harbor germs and pose a risk to your health, according to a study by the University of Arizona.

The researchers tested 84 bags collected from shoppers in Tucson, Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area and found that just over half were contaminated with potentially harmful bacteria. Twelve percent of the bags contained E. coli, which indicates possible fecal matter and more dangerous pathogens.

“A lot of people are not aware of the potential for the cross-contamination of food,” said Charles Gerba, a UA professor and co-author of the study.

But can a reusable grocery bag contain enough bacteria to make you sick?

“Well, it’s sort of a random chance,” he said. “Sometimes, there may be enough.”

In order to avoid those bacteria, you have to launder the bags, which means more energy use and detergent in the water.  You don’t have any of that with plastic bags.

Then, there’s the high lead levels found in the bags.  Wow, I’d love to eat lead-leached food, wouldn’t you?  And I highly doubt these results are restricted to the Tampa area:

Grocery chain Winn-Dixie sells a reusable grocery bag with two sturdy handles, pictures of cute baby faces and enough toxic lead to alarm health experts.

The bag contains enough lead that Hillsborough County could consider the bag hazardous if thrown out with household trash, according to independent laboratory tests commissioned by The Tampa Tribune.

It’s not just Winn-Dixie.

Tribune tests also showed some Publix reusable bags had lead levels that exceed federal limits for paint and exceeded rules coming soon for children’s toys. Though the bags comply with other limits, Publix, in a cautionary move, asked its bag suppliers to lower lead content in bags. That decision came after officials were told the results of the Tribune tests.

Hmmm . . . for all the “benefits” of a “healthy” planet, apparently going green is not so “beneficial” to a healthy human who lives on that planet.

Yup, going green is hazardous to your health.

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60 Responses

I refuse to go GREEN or do ANYTHING supposedly healthful to the environment because it has ALWAYS BEEN A TOTAL RIP OFF.

Just look at those ridiculous light bulbs. You will become rich if you stockpile incondescent bulbs.

Just wait till they try to take away my BLEACH. It will be a blood bath!!!!!!!! Clothes washers that use less water, happy repairs for the plugged drains because NOT ENOUGH WATER WASHES THROUGH TO KEEP THEM CLEAR.


As goes Israel, so goes the World... on November 18, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    “Go Green” is like nails on a chalkboard.

    Most of it is a big bag of lies. The rest they stole from God (whom they deny exists). He made Adam and mankind to follow stewards of His Creation.

    So the “Greenies” are liars, thieves, & idolaters.

    Anne-Marie on November 18, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    Debbie, buy a messenger bag or backpack to tote stuff home.

    I live upstairs so putting grocery bags in the messenger bag – its the only “man bag” I consider essential to make life easier and it also saves me a couple of trips to my apartment.

    I just hate liberals taking away our freedom of choice in the name of their “green” pagan faith – you’re not the only one who feels that way!

    NormanF on November 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm

This is the lamest article I’ve ever seen you write, Debbie.
I mean if they find lead or bacteria in regular shopping bags, does that mean you should go green? Sheesh, obviously products containing lead should never make it to the market and that is the problem.

Zsuzsi on November 18, 2010 at 4:14 pm


You don’t seem to get it. Under the rubrics of “Green,” defective product was rammed into the marketplace.

Sadly, starting from the banning of DDT onward, nearly everything the Greens have advocated has been wrong.

Red Ryder on November 18, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Red Ryder

What have the greens advocated that is wrong?

Honestly, anyone truly going green would probably not shop at those places anyway. This is maybe what happens when mainstream goes green. They have no idea how to do it.

Zsuzsi on November 18, 2010 at 4:36 pm

This is a good time to talk about petrochemicals. We have twice as much natural gas (measured by btu’s) as Saudia Arabia has oil. Similarly, we have twice as much as Saudi Arabia has coal.

Currently, it is not practical to obtain all of the coal (water requirements, environmental, and economic issues, etc.). However, China is harnessing the power of the coal underground, and has underground power stations in the coal mines!

I do believe in recycling and in conservation, in an intelligent, scientifically based economic manner. The bags should be washed. As to the lead in the bags, that’s what happens when you manufacture in CHINA!!!!. Yes, the paint for the bags, and some of the bags themselves, are manufactured overseas.

Jon Grant on November 18, 2010 at 4:41 pm

What have the greens advocated that is wrong?

You overlook the banning of DDT (already mentioned), which led to the death of at least 10 million Africans–and absolutely no improvement in the environment. How about subsidies for ethanol, which offer no advantage in either energy savings or pollution reduction?

How about attacks on chemicals long proven to be safe such as BPA and phthalates, which are being replaced with other chemicals with little track record?

How about pointless and expensive restrictions on chemicals to levels even lower than they occur in nature (the EPA does this all the time)?

How about those who would ban the chlorination of water–the single greatest scientific achievement in human history?

Need I go on?

Red Ryder on November 18, 2010 at 4:51 pm

The Green Fascists won in Los Angeles County, where the plastic bag was banned. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted 3-1 to ban the bag and will go into effect in 2011.

CaliforniaScreaming on November 18, 2010 at 4:52 pm

    As I understand it the ban on plastic bags in LA County is only for unincorporated parts of the county. Not sure if it even affects the City of Los Angeles. So the Hermosa Beach Vons will still be using plastic bags.

    Richard on November 19, 2010 at 2:59 pm

Debbie I.m with you. Every time I hear green all I can think about is how are they trying to cheat us now?
How is your knee doing?

Linda on November 18, 2010 at 4:52 pm

When I was in high school, the hippys whined about all the trees being chopped down to make paper bags. Then came the plastic bag. Because the plastic bag is made from petroleum, now plastic bags are un-cool. All these freaks belong in San Francisco…

#1 Vato on November 18, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    #1, my thought exactly. Perhaps I am showing my age, but I remember when the plastic bags were introduced as a way to replace paper bags, so we could “save the planet!” Because, after all, everyone knows that an entire TREE is killed to make every brown paper bag in the grocery store.

    At the time I HATED the plastic bags, because the bag boys would never double bag the food, and heavy things would break when the plastic bags broke.

    Then the greenies decided their precious plastic bags were destroying the planet, so we were all encouraged to BUY reusable cloth bags and use those. Well, one of the reasons studied are showing really high levels of bacteria in those bags is because people put all manner of things like packages of raw CHICKEN in them, along with their fruit, canned beverages, and other unwrapped grocery items. I think it’s DISGUSTING! Then they never wash the bags. Like my dear husband it is more likely that the bags are unpacked, then go back in the backseat of the car for the next trip to the grocery store.

    I think it’s a HOOT that the greenies are now concerned about the levels of LEAD in the cloth bags. I am seeing more and more paper bags in the stores these days. Does that mean the trees in the rain forest have all grown back?

    You know, if you live long enough, to realize that pretty much everything that liberals get all worked up about and want banned or changed or outlawed turn out to be just plain STUPID! And don’t get me started on the incandescent light bulb ban. I can’t believe the guy who co-sponsored that little piece of crap legislation came from West Michigan!

    DG in GA on November 19, 2010 at 12:48 am

Um, this article is NOT silly. The Green lobby is hurting and defrauding this country.

Those who work in people’s homes can tell you what a POS those crappy, low-flow toilets are. And as always…like Liberalism, they generate the opposite of their stated intent. If you ain’t Sheryl Crow, you’ll be having to flush the toilet every other time you need to clean yourself proper…or it will overflow.

How about those crappy low-flow showers? The water pressure is so weak, you’re in there 3 times longer to get the soap off.

And those curlique lightbulbs? Totally toxic, but greenie approved!

I hate the Green movement. Before it was in vogue I used to adhere to it (in the 90s) and I spent twice the cash on foolish crap that did NOT work as well as the conventional brands. Oh, as a conservative, it amuses me to see I recycle more than Liberals. Some of the Liberals I know are moony-moon bat Liberals and I STILL recycle more than them. Hypocrites. (I only recycle because it keeps my trash minimal…one bag a week…I am fully aware it is HS).

Skunky on November 18, 2010 at 6:23 pm

Here’s where are things are with the Green pagan cult:

Liberals gave us low flush toilets to save water but now to flush bodily waste out of sight you need to flush a couple of times – where are the water savings?

Then liberals came up with CFLs – they contain mercury – guh-reat for the environment when it comes time to dispose of them.

And now they want to make it impossible for people to bring food home.

Don’t ask why they’re against modern living and want to force the rest of us to abandon it.

NormanF on November 18, 2010 at 7:14 pm


    Here’s a little tip. If you hate the low-flow toilets, as I do, then do what I did. I went to the plumbing supply store and explained that I wanted a toilet that would flush EVERYTHING the first time, every time. I was sick of having to flush the toilet 3 or 4 times per use in order for everything to go down. I mean, where’s the water savings there? The plumbing supply people told me to buy TOTO toilets. They are made in Japan and they are FANTASTIC! We installed one in every bathroom in our house, and have been very pleased with them for over five years. They qualify as “low-flow” for legal purposes, but they sure do work!

    And as for the CFL lightbulbs, which I HATE, I have a funny story. A young man I know who is an environmental engineer and a rabid Greenie installed CFL bulbs all through his house. One night he was changing a burned-out bulb (and no, they do NOT last longer than incandescent) and it broke. He totally FREAKED OUT because he was sure he was getting toxic levels of mercury from breathing in the room with the broken bulb. So he left the room, with the bulb still in it, and went to the emergency room to be treated for mercury poisoning. The docs thought he was absolutely NUTS! One decided to give him some kind of placebo and then held him there for “observation” for several hours. Once he decided he was probably going to live, he went home. But then he had the problem of the broken lightbulb in his room. Not sure how he resolved that, but when he told me this story I almost bust a gut laughing. So I asked him to explain to me again how these CFL bulbs are so environmentally superior…

    DG in GA on November 19, 2010 at 1:00 am

      As we all know, the blind worship of Nature is paganism.

      We’re supposed to be stewards of the earth but we’re not supposed to be subjected to its whims. It exists for our benefit and for as long as the Judeo-Christian ethic rule the earth, man saw nothing wrong with reclaiming the wilds to improve the lot of human existence.

      I can’t explain what’s wrong with people unhappy that has come about. But we must insist on the right to pursue happiness. If that making our lives on earth more livable, so be it.

      NormanF on November 21, 2010 at 12:26 am

    As everyone here is saying (that is, those with a brain that can see, as opposed to the moonbat alarmists), the whole “green” movement is about absolute “Big Brother”-style control of the populace – as well as destroying Western economies and siphoning the wealth of Western countries off to parasitic tinpot dictatorships (generally, Communist and Third World) that can’t or, more to the point, won’t stand up on their own two feet without any foreign aid (or at least, as little as possible). But also, the “greenies” all seek to forcibly reduce our standard of living to a primitive, sub-Third World existence. Their obsession with “short showers” as few times a week as possible, for example, may have more to do with a desire on their part to lower us all to their level – that is, primitive, unhygienic slobs who stink to the high heavens (and from what I understand, many lefties smell of B.O. the closer you are to them).

    ConcernedPatriot on November 19, 2010 at 9:33 am

@Jon Grant – “I do believe in recycling and in conservation, in an intelligent, scientifically based economic manner. The bags should be washed. As to the lead in the bags, that’s what happens when you manufacture in CHINA!!!!. Yes, the paint for the bags, and some of the bags themselves, are manufactured overseas.”

Thank you. I totally agree with you. Of course there have been mistake made by the greenies who push their agenda, but that doesn’t make everything they do all bad. Most of you are over-reacting. Without these “Greenies” big corporations would get their way for pure profits without any regard to human health.

Re: DDT – have you ever thought the problem would have never existed if they never used it in the first place?

Re: EPA limits – they are based on threat to human health. If they based it on what is in nature it would be ok for drinking water to include arsenic, because it occurs naturally in the environment!

Re: removing chlorine from water. Hello? Chlorine is a highly reactive chemical and adding it in water creates toxic substances which are known carcinogens. There are other ways to disinfect water which does not create carcinogens. Thank you very much, but I prefer my water cancer-causing free.

Re: low flow showers – have no idea what you people are going on about. I have one and I don’t feel any lack of pressure. It’s very simple physics actually. You make the holes in the nozzle smaller and you need less water to get more pressure. The older shower heads are hugely inefficient.

The only point that I maybe agree with is low flow toilets. Having to flush twice clearly is less efficient. I haven’t gone toilet shopping, but I would hope there are models that are lower flow which do not have that problem.

Zsuzsi on November 18, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    You’re full of it Susie. DDT not being used in Africa is killing millions. Throw ’em another mosquito net, I reckon. Raaaaacist.

    Oh, and most peeps have no idea about low-flow showers if they don’t have to use one. I travel often and I use them and they SUCK. It’s heaven when one can use the old fashion ones that feel like Kramer’s shower on “Seinfeld”.

    Not being Green is NOT the same as not loving the environment and caring about polution. I hate litter and pick it up when I see it. I recycle (although not for YOUR purposes). The Greenies ought to crap on about pollutiion in lieu of scamming and trying to control (the key!) free people with fraudulent Global Warming.

    If you love God, you love the Earth and your environment. We answer to HIM, not fraudulent, commie control freaks!

    Skunky on November 18, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    About DDT, if we hadn’t used DDT we would have had many more
    millions die during World War 2. During World War 1 the nations lost more to typhus and other diseases than from combat, but thanks to DDT deaths from typhus were rare during
    the second conflict. Deaths due to malaria, elephantitus,
    and other diseases were curtailed in tropical countries after
    the war through the use of DDT. Rachel Carson’s book “Silent
    Spring” provoked panic regarding DDT and researchers “proved”
    forced feeding of DDT to birds caused thin egg shells, but they
    didn’t disclose they had withheld calcium in the test birds’
    diet–kind of like the global warming experts do with manipulating climate data to prove their pet theories. Since
    the ban of DDT millions more in Africa, India, and other
    countries have again fallen victim to the diseases that could
    have been prevented via DDT.

    Daniel K on November 19, 2010 at 8:38 am

The same thing has happened to me. They stuff so many groceries in a paper bag at Whole Foods that the bag breaks as I’m trying to carry it. And then you can’t reuse the paper bags because who throws trash into a paper bag? You have to have plastic bags for kitchen trash.

Environmentalists are some stupidest creatures on earth. We have a huge incinerator in Fairfax County that creates no pollution because of the technology, so there is no real need to get rid of plastic or recycle. It was built and is enviromentally good because there is now no need for landfills.

But are the environmentalists happy? No. They would complain and complain about plastic bags taking up landfill spaces, but when communities build incinerators and make landfills obsolete, they now complain that it makes it a disincentive to recycle. It is irrational and illogical.

JM on November 18, 2010 at 7:42 pm

Debbie can stock on kitchen trash bags and take one shopping. One can carry almost all the groceries home that several plastic bags used to do.

Its still plastic! But a lot heckuva stronger than the store bags.

NormanF on November 18, 2010 at 9:21 pm

    Really good idea.

    skzion on November 19, 2010 at 11:45 am

Here in DC they imposed a 5 cent charge per plastic bag as of January 1 this year. That p*ssed me off because they fit a my trash receptacle nicely. I’ve always recycled any excess, but now I have to pay for the privilege. (I’ve long wondered what greenies use for their trash.)

Here’s the kicker. Those plastic bags are/were all made in the US. The reusable fabric bags are made in China (thus the use of lead doesn’t surprise). And news that they can harbor bio-nasties came was reported months ago.

One impact in my local grocery store is that someone who used to man a check-out now stands around with a bunch of bags for those who need them. So productivity and service take a hit.

By the way, I may be one of the few that has no problem with those little CFL bulbs (except that they’re all sourced in China). I can get them in various “temperatures” (2700K approximates that of standard incandescents) and they last FAR longer. I couldn’t go more than a few weeks without one of my old bulbs going “pop” – especially troublesome for overheads. No more. I’m getting years out of some of my newer bulbs.

Raymond in DC on November 18, 2010 at 10:36 pm

    The neodymium CFL light bulbs cast a pleasing glow.

    But the future is a good LED bulb. The white light takes some getting used to. I don’t mind it in my desk lamps.

    NormanF on November 18, 2010 at 11:23 pm


      CFLs have trace amounts of mercury in them. Also, I’ve had more than one of them fail catastrophically. In other words, the lamp burned enough to ignite on the outside.

      LED’s have poor color rendition, but they’re getting better. The ones with barely acceptable color rendition cost a minor fortune, but I expect prices to eventually come down.

      Typical T8 fluorescent tubes used in commercial buildings have a CRI (Color Rendition Index) of 82 which is quite good. Some of the new (and expensive) LED lamps are showing CRI ratings of 75… which is getting there. I think a flood lamp with an equivalent of 60 Watts (incandescent) was about $80.00.

      I’m especially particular about what kind of lamps I use for outdoor lighting. Outdoor lighting is EXPENSIVE and necessary mostly for security. So far, the best thing I’ve seen for outdoor is the Phillips high-efficiency halogen. It’s not as cost efficient as a CFL, but it is rugged and performs in the cold Michigan winter nights with a 70% savings over incandescent lamps.

      I’ve definitely got my eye out for residential grade LEDs, but so far, there’s nothing I’ve seen in LEDs that replaces a standard A-Lamp.

      There is NO Santa Claus on November 19, 2010 at 2:59 pm

@Skunky, if that is the case about DDT, and good science can prove it’s an effective way to eradicate malaria without serious side effects, I don’t see why they wouldn’t use it. Especially since there are still countries which use DDT. According to this article, mosquitoes were already getting resistant to DDT, and scientists were already looking for an alternative before DDT was banned. Not to mention the effects of using DDT.

Maybe the showers you are using suck because they are cheap hotel shower heads. Or maybe the water is softer than you are used to. My showers at home are not any longer even though I use low flow.

And, now you say global warming is not real? Even environmental scientists accept global warming as a fact.

p.s. my name isn’t Susie 🙂

Zsuzsi on November 18, 2010 at 11:03 pm

    Susie, who said I used hotel showers? You are so wrong.

    The fact that you believe in AGW says it ALL. I will NEVER believe in it. Even when I was a Liberal I didn’t because I met Rush Limbaugh in 1991 and I read his first book. Since then, I never fretted about it. EVER.

    “Silent Spring” has been proven to be a farce.

    Usually, Sean ends with a great Savage quote, but I’m gonna use one myself…

    “Liberalism is a mental disorder”

    Skunky on November 18, 2010 at 11:14 pm

Are you calling me Susie just to bug me?

Right, Silent Spring is not proven but that doesn’t mean DDT doesn’t have other, real health effects.

I don’t think anymore about liberal vs republican. I think both sides are flawed and both have truths. I prefer to decide each issue for myself and not just jump on any bandwagon.

“Oh, and most peeps have no idea about low-flow showers if they don’t have to use one. I travel often and I use them and they SUCK.”

It sounded to me like you had to use low-flow showers when traveling – hence hotel showers?

I’m with Raymond on the light bulbs. I replaced most of my bulbs in my house, and I rarely have to change them, and I save a lot on my energy bills.

Zsuzsi on November 18, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    Susie? Who is Susie?? WHO CARES what your name is, you are still the troll of the day.

    congrats, iszusz.

    Sewsalot on November 19, 2010 at 3:36 pm

Liberal environmentalists are the biggest frauds on the planet. As previously stated, I recycle more than these hypocritical leftists and living in a state that is moon-batty as it gets, I get to sometimes reside in a town famous for being as lefty as Berkeley, CA.

When I am there, I love it when the young, fresh-faced Greenies try to get me to give $$ or my time to their environmental organization. They bug me while I walk down this lefty, city street and it is so filthy with trash EVERYWHERE (not to mention druggies, alco’s and riff-raff a plenty!). They crap-on about Global Warming and I ask them how can we fight Global Warming when this city is like a dumpster with trash and filth everywhere? They never know what to say to that and I tell them I will not contribute ’til the city is pristine and pollution taken care of. Messes ’em up everytime!

Skunky on November 18, 2010 at 11:27 pm

Wow, such derangement over reusuable bags and anything that saves a little energy and creates less litter. Those plastic bags at the store are so flimsy anyways you’d need to triple bag your stuff. Your bags can be washed and probably should be if you are so concerned about bacteria. Your purse harbors lots of nasties like e-coli and never gets washed so you shouldn’t be so shocked that any bag that is used/reused gets dirty! Perhaps you should take your purse in for a good cleansing if you really are that concerned.

CFLs and those ugly flourescent lights have long been used in office settings, well because it saves energy and therefore money. Nothing wrong with that.

If the stores decided it was most cost effective to just not have bags (some discount grocery stores have you pay a nickle for a bag)I doubt any of you would mind. Free market baby!

col on November 19, 2010 at 12:12 am

Its not a free market when liberal fascists take away our freedom to make our own choices and they decide what is good for us.

When Big Brother is obsessed with the most intimate details of your personal existence, 1984 is already here.

NormanF on November 19, 2010 at 2:27 am

“Paper, plastic or fecal?”

united states of sharia on November 19, 2010 at 3:53 am

Why is there FECAL material in the reusable bags?

Please, I have seen no answer as to why there would be
fecal matter in the bags unless the bags were used for

Little help here, please.

cthelight on November 19, 2010 at 6:23 am

    It apparently comes from the untreated or improperly treated sewage water that is used in the processing of the synthetic fabrics used to make the re-useable bags.

    They are made from a similar fabric that is used for interfacing in some clothing. This is a man made fabric and too me it is hardly a NATURAL fabric that would be considered “green”.

    They are a HOAX. To sell more crap( literally and figuratively) from China.

    Sewsalot on November 19, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    Alright, as Debbie says: Reading is Fundamental. It is fecal bacteria, not fecal matter that is identified. Big difference. Fecal bacteria is easily transferred, for instance from unwashed hands (made in China?). For fecal matter to be in the bag someone or some animal would have to use it for a latrine.

    Richard on November 19, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Maybe she should sue the store for not providing the proper bag to carry heavy items or double bagging the items.

The way people are reacting to resuable bags act like so called liberals dumped 100 million gallons of oil into the ocean. Oh right, that was just a consequence of the free market and perfectly acceptable, as long as its something a lib didn’t like.

col on November 19, 2010 at 6:41 am

It should be noted that plastic bags are recyclable.

As to the person talking about DDT, they are deleterious to the planet, to humans, and to animals. There are better ways of controlling mosquitoes than DDT, to which the mosquitoes develop a resistance.

More people died in Africa due to war than to malaria. More and more Africans now live in urban areas than in the bush, so the problem is solving itself.

Mosquitoes are needed for fish and birds to survive, fish and birds, which, I note, are eaten in Africa. The ban was scientifically sound.

Malaria did not go up in this country when DDT was banned. However, the number of bald eagles increased.

I agree some environmentalists talk through their hats. That does not mean that all scientists and conservationists are wrong. Distinguish the science from the bologna out there. We do not want our air and water supply to be like that of China.

Some environmental laws save lives, while others are stupid. Don’t throw the baby with the bathwater out the window.

Jon Grant on November 19, 2010 at 7:00 am

The Bible tells us we need to be green.
I’m not saying the “greenies” nowadays are telling the truth about everything, but caring for our environment is very important.
I just wish someone honest would tell us all a good way to do it. Most recycling just ends up in the landfill because the council are to lazy and greedy to take care of it. As for supermarket bags, either take a rucksack, or plastic boxes if you have a car.
Or reuse your plastic bags. But no one needs to put 3 items in each plastic bag and then throw them in the trash when they arrive home.

Rosie on November 19, 2010 at 7:54 am


You truly are an elitist fool.

There never WAS anything wrong with DDT, and EPA’s own Science Advisory Board recommended AGAINST banning it, but Ruckelshaus did so, anyway–for political reasons. Try thinking for yourself and checking out the facts for once. There really is more to life than what your Lefty college professors teach you.

As to water purification, in certain cases, there are alternatives to chlorine, but if you are talking about getting pure water to large numbers of people, there is no substitute.

To dismiss chlorination absolutely identifies you as a clueless moron. Ever hear of cholera?

I hate to burst the bubble, but there is no science over at EPA anymore. I have worked with that agency for years, and let me assure you: All the good people have left. What remains are a bunch of radical chemophobes. Don’t believe me? Check out some of their dockets.

As before, EPA’s own Science Advisory Board routinely disputes the agency’s findings.

Please stop drinking the Kool-Aid.

Red Ryder on November 19, 2010 at 9:32 am


Fecal material in reusable bags…

Sadly, many use them also as diaper bags–no kidding. And, they are made in China, with no QC standards. In transit, they can pick up rodent feces on-board ships.

That we still buy stuff from China after the Chinese drywall mess testifies to the bankruptcy of current policy.

Another indictment of “Green”: To clear the air and water (supposedly) we export all of our manufacturing to China, but then we import the pollution.

Yes. All Greenies really are pathetic fools. That their patron saint is Rachel Carson says it all.

Red Ryder on November 19, 2010 at 10:18 am

Please…the scientific evidence against DDT was plentiful. There are better ways of controlling mosquitoes than DDT for which the effectiveness of time declines.

DDT does have many deleterious effects, and the US is none the worse for its ban. Just look up in the skies around DC and other areas of the country, and see how the bald eagles have returned.

Jon Grant on November 19, 2010 at 1:17 pm


I usually agree with you, but you are wrong on this one. Actually there AREN’T better ways of controlling mosquitoes, and there was no scientific evidence against it, which is why the tech people at EPA were against the ban.

Happy to send you more info, if you are interested.

The bald eagle thing was just more of the BS.

The US may be none the worse for the ban, but Africa sure the Hell is worse for the ban.

Red Ryder on November 19, 2010 at 2:00 pm

We don’t have an “energy crisis”. We don’t have a “global warming” crisis. We HAVE a petroleum crisis because the world’s easiest to produce supplies are controlled by an evil, imperialist, Muslim King in Saudi Arabia.

The “energy crisis” and the “Green” movements are all designed to obfuscate that fact and divert us from the fact that the King of Saudi Arabia has every politician in the United States PAID OFF. Any time you hear a politician answer a question about “gas prices” with a discussion of “energy”, “solar”, “wind” a red flag should immediately go up in your mind. Those guys (I don’t care how much they support Israel) are in the pay of King Saud and/or his petroleum lobby agents.

The “Green” movement’s primary objective is to keep America from using our coal deposits which could displace petroleum in any number of easy (and some not-so-easy) to produce synfuels and alternate fuels. This helps Saudi Arabia hold their monopoly control of petroleum prices. Once you eliminate coal, petroleum and natural gas become the cleanest burning fuels. (The USA imports 13% of our natural gas already. The Pickens plan is useless!) The whole “green” movement is highly favorable to Saudi Arabia.

You might think that using LESS petroleum is unfavorable to Saudi Arabia and you would be WRONG. We use less; they pump less. They still rake in the dough. While you’re using less (buying that “smart car”) 20 Chinese and Indians bought their first car the very same day! You live on less, the Saudis make more money. That’s the way conservation works. That’s why politicians in the pay of Uncle Saud promote it.

By comparison, if you use SOMETHING OTHER THAN PETROLEUM in your car, you’re really sticking it to Uncle Saud. Buy a flex fuel car that uses E85 (They’ll run on 100% ethanol and probably methanol too, but the Big 3 don’t want you to know that.) and you can buy AMERICAN-MADE automotive fuels. Don’t do it because it’s “green”, cool, or trendy. Do it so you stop using petroleum to propel your car. Do it so your money stays here in the US (and Michigan, as well) paying American workers a living wage.

Don’t worry about depriving anyone of food. That’s another Saudi/Big Oil LIE. Corn ethanol is made only from the starch. All the leftover portions of the corn kernel go right back to the cow where they grow leaner with less fat.

Most of those re-usable bags are made in China. If you think China has a “green energy profile”, think again. Their Quality Control (QC) is so bad, we’ve gotten pet food that killed our puppy dogs and kitty cats, baby formula that killed our children and clothing that lights up like a torch.

BTW, have you ever held a match to one of those re-usable bags? Speaking of lighting up like a torch. Don’t try it at home; you’re likely to breath lead in the fumes.

We are being LIED to every day by big government, big media, big oil who are all in bed with King Saud. Together, they push taxation without representation from an evil king from far-off shores. It’s an age old dilemma for America only today, we don’t have political leaders willing to confront it. They’ve all been bought off.

There is NO Santa Claus on November 19, 2010 at 2:37 pm

@skzion and @Red Rider

Looks like you 2 have resorted to name calling. Tsk tsk tsk.

Guess you can’t handle it when people disagree with you.

I happened to have worked as an Environmental Engineer for years, and evaluated disinfection techniques for a several municipalities, so I know what I’m talking about. I just don’t want to get into it with you people because you already seem to have your mind made up.

Personally, I prefer to keep an open mind.

Zsuzsi on November 19, 2010 at 2:57 pm

A lot of you made some pretty definitive assertions, but I didn’t see many of you backing them up. This makes me suspicious that you’re just talking out your tucheses.

Zsuzsi on November 19, 2010 at 2:59 pm


How much of an environmental engineer can you be if you don’t realize that elitist first world precepts do not apply to the rest of the world? We cannot get away from the fact that we knowingly killed millions of Africans with the DDT policy–and this was but the precursor of more idiotic regulation.

Sadly, the DDT=evil thing is nothing more than a cultural meme, but is a damned strong one. Whatever good the Green movement accomplished ended around 1985. Quite telling that EPA *still* identifies with Rachel Carson, whose “scientific” points have all been disproven. You can Google that…

AND–isn’t an environmental engineer someone who wanted to be a real civil engineer, but couldn’t quite handle the chemistry, math, and physics?

Sorry, but I’ve been around the block in the chemical industry and all its regulatory aspects, and some of the dumbest people I’ve ever met call themselves environmental engineers.

Hopefully you are an exception, but right now I’m not so sure.

Not sure why you expect us to “back up” what we say in this sort of forum. What would satisfy you, some weblink?

How about just broadening your horizons, and questioning some of the stuff you were taught.

Red Ryder on November 19, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Correct! Correct! On all points there RED RYDER!!

    Sewsalot on November 19, 2010 at 3:42 pm

Yay, Red Ryder! Setting the lunatic fringe straight!!!

Skunky on November 19, 2010 at 7:16 pm

You can wash the reusable bag – or you know spray it with Lysol. Good luck with your lunacy.

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