Consumers Association of Penang

Giving voice to the little people...since 1970

Are Hydrogen Cyanide levels in Bukit Koman really safe?

Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) queries the Department of Environment (DOE) whether the concentration and level of hydrogen cyanide (HCN) in the air in Bukit Koman, near Raub, Pahang declared safe by the Department, are actually safe and will not cause any adverse health effects to those who are exposed to the pollutant.

AELB must clarify statement on radioactive pendants

The Atomic Energy Licensing Board’s (AELB) Executive Secretary’s denial about issuing any official statement on the radioactive pendant issue is bemusing to the Consumers Association of Penang.

We refer to the press statement issued by the Executive Secretary of the AELB on 19 September 2012, referring to CAP’s press statement wherein CAP had highlighted that the AELB had confirmed its tests on the Quantum Pendant (Fusionexcel) and SE Pendant (Cosway) which had shown that these pendants contained radioactivity concentrations of Thorium-232 and Uranium-238 at levels higher than that permitted by AELB.

Harmful radioactive pendants

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In 2010, CAP had raised our concern on the effects of radioactive or scalar energy pendants being sold by direct-sales companies.  CAP brought this matter to the attention of the Ministry of Health (MOH) and Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) after receiving a complaint from a consumer.

After conducting tests on the pendants, the AELB earlier this year informed the Ministry of Health that the Board has decided to ban the use of Quantum Pendant (Fusionexcel) and SE Pendant (Cosway). This is because it has found that the radiation dose rate at the surface of the pendant is higher than that permitted for the public.

Lynas waste thorium for nuclear energy: A real health threat

During the last few weeks the public has heard the wildly positive and optimistic views of both the government and some local scientists concerning the Lynas plant in Gebeng, Kuantan.
 
On 20th March, the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), Dr Maximus Ongkili told the Dewan Rakyat that the Lynas plant is safe and not harmful to public health. He said that the effluent from the plant contained low radioactive material. He explained that the effluent was not categorised as a radioactive material waste by the International Atomic Energy Agency, as it contained natural radioactive material (Ongkili: Proposed Gebeng Rare Earth Plant Is Safe, Bernama, 23 March 2011).
 
Unfortunately, he failed to give the effluent the proper name: TENORM.

Asbestos: Malaysia should make sure ban stays in place

The Consumers Association of Penang called for a complete ban on all forms of asbestos way back in 2001. This was due to the rising number of cases of asbestos-related diseases due to the intensive use of asbestos in the past and the fact that some countries, including Malaysia, continue to use chrysotile.

In a recent consultation with the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) on 28 March 2011, a consensus was reached on the banning of asbestos, including chrysotile. Representatives of APCO Worlwide who were also at the meeting, objected to the inclusion of chrysotile in the ban on the basis that Malaysia would face economic losses by doing so. It was emphasized by those present and by DOSH that the use of chrysotile, is in any case being phased out by the industry.