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White Phosphorus. - Case Study Example

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White phosphorus (WP) is commonly used in bombs, missiles and military jargons as it burns fiercely and causes serious burns or death ( Eisehower, 1944, p. 70). White phosphorus can cause death in three ways; by getting ingested, by being inhaled as smoke, and by burning deep into tissue…
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White Phosphorus. Case study
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White Phosphorus White Phosphorus White phosphorus (WP) is commonly used in bombs, missiles and military jargons as it burns fiercely and causes serious burns or death ( Eisehower, 1944, p. 70). White phosphorus can cause death in three ways; by getting ingested, by being inhaled as smoke, and by burning deep into tissue. The use of this material has been an issue of special concern as it adversely affects the environment in numerous ways. The government and the regulatory authorities should formulate certain mandatory policies to control the use of white phosphorus either by regulatory or non-regulatory approach. The policies must be effective enough to reduce the risk of such death-defying equipments. To be more specific, the policies should aim at the prohibition of the use of this hazardous substance and thereby limiting the pollutant emissions. It is possible by using recycled materials or by levying heavy tax on industries which create a considerable amount of pollution. Imposing higher tax on things that produce pollution can reduce the risk of pollutant emissions. Levying destructive tax on white phosphorus should be introduced essentially for the public health and safety. This would cut down the production and use of white phosphorus and other similar dangerous materials. Since white phosphorus is widely used in the match industries, it easily reaches every home. Industries use hazardous materials like sesquisulphide and white phosphorus in their production of matches. As reported in New York Times (April, 1911), considering this horrible fact, president Taft had appealed to cancel the patent of Diamond Match Company for the use of sesquisulphide because he knew that this destructive material might be used by other industries too. In the same way, Esche brought forward a bill for taxing the venomous white phosphorus matches. Though the bill was rejected by the Republican Congress, in his second attempt Esche could succeed in passing the bill on taxing highly on the white phosphorus. These efforts could reduce the total production of white phosphorus not only in the states but also across the world. Besides the above, the government can restrict the use of white phosphorus in many other ways; for instance, the government can limit the use of the material in military operations. The military actions like deploying white phosphorus shells within a highly inhabited area are dreadful and horrible. On the explosion of such shells, they produce steamy and flaming pieces which can burn and warren into the clothing and body. The common people are the victims of war and they are the ones suffering from the impacts of this perilous material. With the assistance of the UNO and other international organizations, nations together should initiate treaties in restricting the use of white phosphorus in military operations. It is a matter of equal importance to ban the use of phosphorus in detergents and dishwasher. 16 states in the US have introduced it by limiting the phosphate level to 0.5 percent. Still, the more widespread attention than any other occupational disease was on phosphorus poisoning. So we should opt for a clean environment and should develop consistent means for evaluating risk, dropping exposure, cheering up less-toxic industrial processes, and identifying safer substitute methods. Recycling of the white phosphorus has been become an issue of increasing interest in the industrial world these days. As Schipper, Klapwijk, Porter, Rulkens, Temmink, Kiestra & Lijmbach (2007), the industrial side streams expose of large amounts of white phosphorus in waste streams; one possibility of reducing the risk factor is to use recycled materials in the place of phosphate rock in the production of white phosphorus. In the same way, the use of white phosphorus in industrial production should be banned. Government should plainly define the objects and techniques to achieve clean production and pollution prevention. Thus, the most important but most neglected responsibility of the current world is to safeguard the environment. The present deteriorating condition of the environment indicates that it is time to curb the use of hazardous materials like the white phosphorus with immediate effect. However, collaborated effort is essential to meet this objective effectively. Above all, in order to reduce the use, the authorities should make people aware of the harmful effects of materials like white phosphorous and should find out suitable process to dispose the situation. References Eisehower, D. D. (1944). Life. USA: Time Inc. Schipper, W. J., Klapwijk, A., Porter, B., Rulkens, W. H., Temmink, B. G., Kiestra, F. D. G & Lijmbach, A. C. M. (Jan 2007). Phosphate recycling in the phosphorus industry. Environmental Technology. Retrieved from http://www.thermphos.com/en/Documentation/~/media/Pdf/documents/PhosphorusRecycling%20pdf.ashx White phosphorus matches. (April 1911). The New York Times. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F10916FB3F5D16738DDDAD0994DC405B818DF1D3 Read More
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