Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Government issues new rules on chromium - More Health News - MSNBC.com

Government issues new rules on chromium - More Health News - MSNBC.com: "In a conference call with reporters, Snare said the 5 microgram permissible exposure level, or PEL, 'is the lowest level that is feasible both technologically and economically.' He said the standard would cost industry $282 million a year to implement.
He said it would result in the avoidance of 100 to 145 cancers a year among the nearly 67,000 workers that currently are exposed to airborne levels of hexavalent chromium of more than 5 micrograms. About 88 percent of the workers are in workplaces where airborne levels already meet or exceed the new standard."

So if I've done the math correctly, it will cost about $2M per year ... per person for each of the 145 people that will be saved as a result of this new standard. Surely there's nothing wrong with spending 2 million a year to keep someone alive who will, one day, die anyway (Michael Sciavo might disagree). What baffles me is that we could use economics as a reason to kill an unborn human. Regardless of the child's environmental advantage or misfortune, he/she can never pay enough in taxes to justify 2million a year in expenditure on his/her behalf. But neither can anyone else.

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