February : 1st news update

Western Aus

John Watt: A happy man – see Australia

Reports and resources

Click on drop-down menu above for:

  1. FAN petition denial and FAN response  (13000 words)

(a) FAN response to EPA denial of petition

(b)EPA response to petition

2.Water on line article with some very cogent comments, responding to the usual protagonists, including Paul Carr from Cumbria ,  a thyroid sufferer, a discharged water worker and a current one – and other contributors. (4500)

Video link: Cortland, NY debate.  The fluoridation opponent (Paul Connett) debates with Slott and Johnson when each were asked to identify scientific studies that supported their arguments. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLtsZgl6zPk

3. Trump withdraws mercury control regulations From Dr Bicuspid… Feb 16 (620)

For U. K. NEWS, Comment  and ‘Stop -Press additions see UK Freedom from Fluoride pages ( updated from March 1st)

Click here to return to UKFFFA  Introduction page

USA

Buda, TX

Feb 7

Story continued from January

Bearing signs and cornflower blue T-shirts reading “Whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting for,” members of the anti-fluoride group Buda Citizens for Safe Water came ready for a fight Tuesday evening.

But minutes before the public hearing began, the City Council surprised the crowd and passed a motion allowing voters to decide in November whether to fluoridate the city’s water supply.

…, Buda had been prepared to restart fluoridation to its water supply last month.

That elicited a roaring outcry from many Buda residents, which led the city to postpone the measure until it could hold Tuesday evening’s public hearing.

The council motion, … will lead to a new city ordinance, council members said.

http://www.mystatesman.com/news/local-govt–politics/buda-voters-decide-november-whether-add-fluoride-water/VBBi37FEVKiXqiD1y0cg8O/

 

Concord, New Hampshire

Feb 15

Two attempts to curtail fluoridation of public water supplies  – …one bill, HB230, would have made it harder to file petitions seeking to add fluoride to water supplies, the other, HB585, would have changed state law to ban fluoridation outright; currently, –  … were killed by the House Municipal and County Government committee….

http://www.concordmonitor.com/water-fluoridation-bills-8116654

 

Durango, Colorado

Feb 8

Also continued from January

DURANGO | Voters will decide in April whether water in their southwestern Colorado community should continue to be fluoridated.…

http://www.aurorasentinel.com/news/state/durango-vote-removing-fluoride-town-water/

Feb 9

Following a decision Tuesday night by the Durango City Council, the fight over fluoride is really just beginning. The Council voted against a citizen-driven petition to prohibit the practice of adding fluoride to the city’s water supply, a process called fluoridation. Procedurally, it forces them to put it on the April ballot for a public vote.

… The issue will land on the upcoming ballot, scheduled for April 4.

. Durango City Councilor Dean Brookie, who dubbed fluoride the new “F” word during last year’s debates, said ” … it’s time to put it on the ballot.”

 This site, put together by area residents, looks at the risks of water fluoridation and explores alternatives for dental health:  cleanwaterdurango.org

https://www.durangotelegraph.com/news/top-stories/flowing-to-a-vote/

 

Frankford. DE

Feb 17

The Frankford Town Council at a special meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 14, approved a settlement with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control that centers on the Town adding fluoride to its water supply.

The council approved the settlement in hopes of moving forward following a lengthy battle with DNREC and with Mountaire Farms over the construction of an on-site well at the Mountaire feed processing facility inside town limits. …The bonds were administered by the state Department of Health & Social Services to finance construction of a new water treatment facility, repair of the existing 125,000 gallon water storage tank, purchase a new 125,000 gallon tank and other improvements to the Town’s water system.

http://www.coastalpoint.com/content/frankford-gets-60k-water-grant-exchange-fluoridation_02_16_2017

 

Greenfield, MA

Feb 9

GREENFIELD — After hearing overwhelming opposition from residents, the town’s Board of Health has decided not to support community water fluoridation.

In October, the Community Health Center of Franklin County suggested the town consider adding fluoride to its public water supply after a dental hygienist found a significant amount of tooth decay and oral health problems in young children while visiting local schools. The Board of Health held two public meetings to gather input on the issue, and ultimately decided not to support it due to its potential impact on local businesses, significant opposition from residents and “underwhelming” statistics about its effectiveness at preventing tooth decay.

“There were numerous citizens who voiced their concerns at both of our meetings,” Board of Health Chairman Dr. William Doyle said. “The Board of Health reviewed voluminous literature, both pro and con on the subject of fluoridation, we read many letters addressed to the board from citizens mostly opposed to fluoridation, and we also read generally unfavorable letters to the editor concerning fluoridation.”

Doyle said the board heard from residents who said the public should not be medicated without permission, complaining of a lack of informed consent with community fluoridation.

“I think most of us were impressed with the public comments, really,” he said. “The people who were against it really came out in force and, quite frankly, some of their comments resonated with me and the board.”

…Doyle said the board also heard from local food manufacturers, including Dan Rosenberg of Real Pickles and Garth Shaneyfelt of Artisan Beverage Cooperative, who said they didn’t know how fluoride in the town’s water might impact their organic, all-natural food process, …

http://www.recorder.com/Greenfield-Board-of-Health-rejects-community-fluoridation-proposal-8008164

 

Jonesborough Tennessee

Feb 14

The Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted to remove fluoride from the town’s water supply after a 3-1 vote at its monthly meeting Monday night

The final decision came several months after the issue was first presented to the board and the public rose in defense of both sides of the issue…

The motion, put forth by Vest, called for the removal of fluoride from the supply in 120 days in order to gain approval from the state to have non-fluoridated water and implement alternative plans for fluoridation and for town staff to begin communications to implement alternative fluoridation plans in Jonesborough schools and local charity organizations.

Mayor Kelly Wolfe invited two community members to present each side of the issue one more time before the board entered discussion. Jay Jarman argued in favor of removing fluoride from the water supply, arguing that fluoridating the water is not the most effective way to administer topical fluoride care. He argued that ingesting fluoride does not have any benefits and that fluoride can be administered through toothpaste, mouthwash, tablets and dentist visits.“I was unable to find any peer-reviewed scientific studies that shows any benefit to ingesting fluoridated water,” Jarman said. “In fact, the opposite is true. …

 

Little Rock, Ark.

Feb 8

A bill introduced to the Arkansas Senate on Wednesday is looking to amend laws concerning water districts and the fluoridation of water.

Introduced by Senator Bryan King (R-Green Forest), Senate Bill 299 would allow water districts to hold an election to determine if the district should fluoridate the water.

An election would be called if there’s a majority vote of the board of directors of the district or a petition is signed by at least 35 percent of the voters in the district.

…The bill has yet to be read or sent to a committee for review.

http://www.thv11.com/news/local/ark-legislator-proposes-bill-to-allow-voters-to-decide-fluoridation-of-water/404268879

 

Orange Water, NC

Feb 10

CHAPEL HILL — Human error and equipment malfunctions have been blamed for the over-fluoridation of water at the Jones Ferry Road Water Treatment Plant that prompted a shutdown and later contributed to one of the largest water main breaks in OWASA history.

Jointly, the two events led to the massive Orange County water shortage last weekend.

..The shutdown began with an unintentional keystroke by a water treatment plant operator.According to the CH2M Hill North Carolina Inc. report, an operator unintentionally sent a command to the fluoride feed pump to increase its chemical feed rate to 80 percent of its total design speed at 11:43 a.m. Feb. 2 instead of 8 percent, which is within the normal operating speed range of 8 to 12 percent.

Twelve seconds after the initial keystroke, a second command was sent to to the pump to readjust the pumping rate back down to the normal range but the pump did not respond to the command.

“On its own, this corrected mis-entry would not be expected to cause an excess fluoride dose,” according to the report.

After multiple consultant tests, OWASA’S fluoride feed pump No. 2 was observed to run at 30 revolutions per minute despite a command indicating the pump should operate at 4 rpm.

“The pump would register the new flow setpoint on its output screen and the pump speed would increase instead of decrease and maintain the new undesired increased speed,” according to the report. “Ultimately, this resulted in a fluoride overfeed at approximately 10 times the expected feed rate.”

…OWASA’s current fluoride feed system is more than 15 years old….

http://www.heraldsun.com/news/investigation-human-equipment-errors-blamed-in-owasa-debacle/article_40934244-efb9-11e6-bb36-230a1828efb1.html

Parsons City,Kansas

Feb 18

Parsons city commissioners will take up the usually contentious issue of fluoridation of the public water supply during their Monday evening meeting. The meeting’s agenda includes … an application for a grant … to re-introduce fluoride to the water supply after an absence of about four years.

The city discontinued the decades-long practice of adding fluoride at the water treatment plant in 2013 because of corrosion in piping at the point where fluoride and caustic soda were added. …

. …In January 2016 the commission learned that CH2M Hill recommended the fluoride feed be moved to the top of a head tank. The injection pump would need to be maintained by water plant workers, so CH2M Hill suggested that the city add a catwalk leading to the tank for safety. Otherwise, employees would have to climb a ladder to the top of the tank.  While the cost of the fluoride feed system would be about $66,500, the price of the elevated walkway is estimated at $76,000, bringing the total to restart the fluoride program to $142,500.

. …When commissioners discussed fluoridation in 2013, a group of residents formed Parsons for Pure Water to oppose it, citing information stating that adding fluoride to water is a health risk and also saying adding fluoride results in medicating the public without consent. The group circulated a petition calling for a vote on the issue, but the petition was ruled invalid by Labette County. The group quit vocalizing its opposition and hasn’t been active since the commission halted discussion of the issue.

POLL : Should Parsons city reintroduce fluoride ?

The result soon after the publication was Yes 50% No 50%

This was still accessible on February 28th.when the figures had changed to Yes: 43.5%, No 56.5%

 

http://www.parsonssun.com/news/article_e1ef2d16-f5a8-11e6-addf-c764c8e78123.html

 

Truckee Meadows, Nevada

Feb 15

A bill introduced by two state lawmakers that would require the Nevada Board of Health adopt regulations mandating the fluoridation of water in counties with more than 100,000 residents concerns local officials.

The Truckee Meadows Water Authority board heard from its lobbyist, Steve Walker, on Wednesday about bills affecting the utility that are being introduced in the Nevada Legislature. State law currently requires fluoridation of water in counties having more than 700,000 residents. Smaller counties need approval of voters. Washoe County’s estimated population in 2015 was 446,903.

…If approved by the full Legislature, TMWA would need to rehabilitate its plants and wells. The initial cost would be $70 million, followed by $3 million in annual maintenance fees, TMWA executive director Mark Foree said. Doing this would mean an additional 8.8 percent rate increase for customers, which is on top of the three percent increase already expected in May.

…Voters in 2002 rejected WC-1, which would fluoridate the water system but Reno Councilwoman Jenny Brekhus noted that voting populations and communities change. However, it’s unlikely TMWA would get money from the state to meet requirements should this bill pass. Grants are possible but would make a minimal dent in the cost.

“I object to a state mandate,” Brekhus said. “Water shouldn’t be used as a medical delivery system.”

Ultimately, the board declined to support the bill as written because of cost and the decision of voters 15 years ago. “The bill could change over time,” Duerr said. “Let’s leave the door open.”

http://thisisreno.com/2017/02/cost-of-water-fluoridation-a-concern-for-tmwa-board/

 

Canada

Moncton,New Brunswick

Feb 7

Moncton Mayor Dawn Arnold has told a group of citizens council will take more than a month to decide if fluoride will go back into the city’s drinking water.

About 25 people rose to stand behind fluoridation opponent Jennifer Jones as she spoke at Monday’s meeting.

“Many of us watched last Monday’s presentation [and] can’t understand why you would only give yourselves a month to study this issue,” Jones said.

Jones, a mother and teacher in Moncton, asked council to take more time to consider the important decision, although her own mind has been made up.

“Public water does not belong to dentists,” she said. “Public water is not the way to administer a drug, especially a drug as controversial as fluoride.”…. It will cost about $20,000 to upgrade the system if fluoride is returned to the water supply.

One week earlier, council held a special meeting to allow two groups to speak on the issue

Mayor Dawn Arnold says everyone on council agreed the fluoride decision should be delayed. (CBC)

Mayor Arnold and council decided before the meeting that the Feb. 27 deadline should be extended.

“They were in agreement that we need a bit more time to make the decision and to have a proper mechanism in place so we can get the answers to some of our questions because as we dig through some of the research we’re getting more and more questions,” she said.

Arnold said council will meet again to put a timeline in place.

In 2011, a group of citizens approached the city to remove fluoride from the water, citing health concerns and saying medicating water is a violation of rights.

The city endured a contentious debate that year which ended with Moncton council voting 7–4 to remove fluoride from the water supply.

At the time, Dieppe had voted to remove fluoride from the water supply, while Riverview voted to keep it. As the three communities all get their water from Moncton’s Turtle Creek Resevoir, Moncton broke the deadlock between the communities.

In 2011, fluoridating the water cost an estimated $100,000 a year. Isabelle LeBlanc, Moncton’s director of communications, said to bring it back would cost about $60,000 a year in supplies plus maintenance, power and human resources, as well as a one-time cost of $20,000 to update the facility.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/fluoride-moncton-water-decision-1.3969828

 

Peel, Ontario

Feb 15

Peel is asking the provincial government to conduct toxicity tests on the additive used to fluoridate the region’s drinking water.

Regional council wants the Ontario government to provide clear evidence the additive is safe for human consumption.

After months of hearing scientific studies that have concluded water fluoridation has proven oral health benefits and contradictory arguments that the practice poses serious health risks, Peel councillors decided to drop the local controversy in the Ontario government’s lap.

For a year now, councillors on Peel Region’s Community Water Fluoridation Committee have been re-examining the benefits and potential health risks associated with adding fluoride to the municipal drinking water system.

The committee was established to form a recommendation for the regional position on continued use of water fluoridation in Peel.   However, it appears council members are no closer to forming that position than they were a year ago.

…Peel is currently using hydrofluorosilicic acid (HFSA) produced from Phosphorite Rock.

Critics of the water treatment have warned HFSA is a highly toxic form of fluoride, produced as a waste byproduct of the phosphate fertilizer manufacturing process. …

http://www.bramptonguardian.com/news-story/7142402-peel-asks-ontario-government-to-test-toxicity-of-fluoride-added-to-local-drinking-water/

 

Australia

Western Australia

Feb 16

Pic: Fluoride Free WA Upper House candidate John Watt.

An alliance between micro-parties and independents could result in the election of a Fluoride Free WA representative in the Upper House from fewer than 1000 votes, electoral analysts believe.

The deal, which The West Australian understands was finalised by preference broker Glenn Druery at the weekend, includes more than half the groups contesting the East Metropolitan Region putting Fluoride Free WA second on their group voting tickets.

ABC electoral analyst Antony Green has suggested Fluoride Free WA candidate John Watt could be elected off 0.2 per cent, or 750 votes, thanks to the elaborate web of preferences from other micro-parties and independents. “With more than 50 candidates in every region, very few people will vote below the line,” Mr Green said.

“Under this system, the more important point is what parties do with their preferences.

“If a party gets any sort of preference vote, once the snowball of preference harvesting gets under way, you never know who’s going to get elected.”

The Fluoride Free party, registered last month, aims to stop water fluoridation in WA.

Before achieving that, the party wants to implement policies including warnings on water bills and council and Health Department websites about using fluoridation for infants’ formula, and free fluoride-free water in every childcare centre, hospital, senior nursing home and a source in every council.

Party secretary Hayley Green said the party had done what was needed to get fluoride out of water. “We’ve stuck together with some of the smaller parties, and we’ve thought we’re not going to be bullied around by the bigger parties,” she said.

“We’ve done what we’ve had to do, like the rest of them.”

Mr Watt said the deal had been “fantastic”.

 

New Zealand

Feb 7

The Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) has failed to make a submission on a controversial fluoridation bill because disagreements meant it ran out of time.

The Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill proposes to take the decision to fluoridate away from councils and give it to district health boards (DHBs). The bill passed its first reading and was open for public comment until February 2.

CDHB member Jo Kane said she was “really cross” the board did not make a submission on behalf of the community. She said the draft submission did not go through because board members went “back and forth in a flood of emails”, arguing over what should and should not be included. Time ran out and the submission was pulled, she said.

Another poll accessible on Feb 28th:

Should Christchurch water be fluoridated?

Yes      37

No       63

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/89105477/canterbury-district-health-board-fails-to-submit-on-controversial-fluoridation-bill

 

Palmerston North

Feb 8

What could happen if you defy Big Brother..Look at the figures!

Palmerston North is proposing to keep on fluoridating city water supplies and is finding out the cost of extending treatment to the villages of Bunnythorpe and Longburn.

The city council’s planning and strategy committee on Wednesday confirmed its pro-fluoride stance. Cr Lew Findlay said the council should go ahead…before the MidCentral District Health Board “come up with a big stick and tell us to do it anyway”

The debate took place after submissions closed on a proposed law change that could transfer decision-making responsibility for fluoridation from local authorities to district health boards.

The draft legislation includes a fine of $200,000, and a further $10,000 a day, where councils refused to act on a board direction to fluoridate water supplies….

Fluoride Free New Zealand spokeswoman Mary Byrne said the council should be using the opportunity that remained before the law change came into effect to stop fluoridation, while it still could.

“There is no harm done by stopping,” she said.

The organisation believed fluoridation was harmful and ineffective and was a huge waste of money.

Byrne said the new law was draconian, allowing district health boards to decide, without public scrutiny and consultation, to force councils to add fluoride to water supplies.

It was a farce to claim the boards would investigate the issue thoroughly, when they were bound to carry out the Ministry of Health’s policy that was steadfastly in favour of fluoridation, she said.

She said it would be hard to argue that there would be any statistical benefits for towns with small populations.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/manawatu-standard/news/89143641/costs-of-fluoridating-village-water-to-be-explored