Colloidal Silver (Silver Nanoparticles) Banned as a Pesticide

Who would have thought that a washing machine would bring down the scrutiny of the EPA regarding silver nano-particles?  That is what happened though with Samsung’s Silver Wash machine which was claimed to inhibit bacteria in clothing by its ionic silver technology.

It seems that the Environmental Protection Agency has decided that Silver Nanoparticles are pesticides and need to be regulated.  This is another blow to health freedom, intended or not.

The Environmental Protection Agency has decided to regulate a large class of consumer items made with microscopic “nanoparticles” of silver, part of a new but increasingly widespread technology that may pose unanticipated environmental risks, a government official said yesterday.

The decision — which will affect the marketing of high-tech odor-destroying shoe liners, food-storage containers, air fresheners, washing machines and a wide range of other products that contain tiny bacteria-killing particles of silver — marks a significant reversal in federal policy. It also creates an unexpected regulatory hurdle for the burgeoning field of nanotechnology, which involves the creation of materials just a few ten-thousandths the diameter of a human hair.1

So while the FDA’s stance is that Colloidal Silver is ineffective, the EPA’s stance is that it is too effective, and might wipe out all the beneficial bacteria in the environment.   It is interesting that the EPA does not seem to care about the tons of antibiotics that get flushed away and pissed down peoples toilets every year, or chlorine which is another substance that kills beneficial bacteria, but it is allowed in our water supply.  This seems terribly inconsistent to me. That is, unless there is another hidden agenda.  Perhaps the government does not want citizens to be able to take care of themselves in the event of a pandemic disease outbreak.

According to the EPA, CS generators may not be sold without approval after March 21, 2008.   The EPA website describes the rule as follows:

Any person distributing or selling such equipment on or before the date of publication of this notice may continue the distribution or sale of such equipment for 6 months from the date of publication of the notice (March 21, 2008).

You may be affected by this action if you sell or distribute ion-generating equipment that uses electrodes to emit chemical substances for pesticidal purposes. Potentially affected equipment include but are not limited to, washing machines containing electrodes that emit silver, copper, or zinc ions and ion generators used in swimming pools to kill algae and as an adjunct to the chlorination process.2

Obviously, CS generators fall under this description.  Interestingly though, the EPA’s definition extends only to metal ions.  Metallic (non ionic) CS seems not to be covered by this rule yet3.  It is hard to understand how silver metal could be banned, as it is naturally occurring in nature, albeit not usually in nano-particle form.

Since CS generators are still available for purchase, the EPA has apparently not taken any action against the manufacturers yet.  However just as the FDA has attacked CS producers, it is reasonable to expect the EPA to do likewise.

At some point, providing information about making CS at home may become illegal.  If so, the instructions about building your own, which is incredibly easy, will disappear from the internet.

In times past, I would have recommended writing your Senators and Representatives about this issue, but alas, in view of the governments responsiveness on issues much more important, I feel that it is a useless waste of time.  (You probably know what I mean.)

1) Rick Weiss, Washington Post Staff Writer, Thursday, November 23, 2006; Page A01

2) Pesticide Registration: Clarification for Ion-generating Equipment

3) An ion is simply an atom that has lost or gained one or more electrons giving it an electrical charge.  This electrical charge changes the atoms reactivity and properties.

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