Category Archives: Uncategorized

Green energy can still make safe choices

While green energy has its safety problems, it’s worth remembering traditional energy production has always been a major consumer of human lives – even in countries boasting a good safety record. In the UK, the official workplace regulator, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), has been instructed to explain its mines safety strategy, after a [...]
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Green construction’s added ingredient – danger

Construction workers involved in environmentally friendly, ‘green’ building projects can face additional traditional and novel hazards, researchers have found.  Problems identified in the study identify a greater risk of falls and new, high risk tasks. The University of Colorado study, publishing in the Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, examined construction projects built to achieve [...]
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USA: Green jobs can be just as deadly

A surge in alternative energy projects and related employment in the US is seeing inexperienced workers recruited to jobs they do not have the skills, training or supervision to do safely, US reports suggest. The US experience echoes that in Australia, where a government energy efficiency home insulation programme saw a spate of injuries and [...]
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WHO backs work-related cancer action call

Urgent action is needed to tackle the occupational and environmental exposures “responsible for a substantial percentage of all cancers,” a new report says. The paper published this month in the online journal Environmental Health Perspectives, says “credible estimates” suggest these exposures could account for up to 1 in every 5 cancers. The authors, Philip J [...]
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Commons ‘misled’ on the cost of unsafe work

UK employment minister Chris Grayling ‘misled’ the House of Commons by claiming the costs to society of workplace safety failings are billions less the real figure, a campaign group has charged. The Hazards Campaign is warning that ministers are constructing a job fear smokescreen to justify a business-friendly drive towards safety lawlessness at work. The [...]
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Deregulation is really a workplace death wish

A UK government-commissioned review of health and safety, which will report to ministers in autumn 2011, is not really about changing the law. It’s about risk envy – our competitors don’t all abide by strict rules governing safety and decency at work, so why should the UK? And it is a topic on which Professor [...]
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Don’t be green on nano dangers

Nanotechnology has a very polished public relations machine. It will, we are told, save our lives, clean our windows and clear up our toxic waste. The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies even has a whole GreenNano theme, that “aims to advance development of clean technologies using nanotechnology, to minimise potential environmental and human health risks associated [...]
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Heavy recycling work caused hernia

A UK employee of a global metals recycling giant needed surgery to correct a hernia which could have been avoided if the company had undertaken and acted on a simple risk assessment. Andrew Kelly, 47, needed the major surgery after moving several objects weighing up to 40kg during an eight-hour shift. The yard supervisor for [...]
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Recycling death highlights green job dangers

A man has died after an explosion at a UK waste recycling plant which left another man seriously injured. The incident at the Sterecycle plant in Rotherham occurred mid-afternoon on 11 January. South Yorkshire Police said a waste incinerator had exploded, creating a hole in the factory’s wall. Michael Whinfrey, a 42-year-old father of three [...]
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Chemicals linked to male breast cancer

Common workplace chemicals have been linked to an increased risk of male breast cancer. The authors of the European study conclude their findings “support growing evidence” linking environmental pollutants to the disease. The study, whose findings are published this week in the journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine, investigated occupational risk factors for male breast cancer, [...]
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