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Old 21-02-2009, 01:34   #61
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Thank you for starting this thread, Colorado Dreamer. I cannot provide any information on the organic sunscreen you asked about, but I can provide a link to what I think is a wonderful, thought-provoking presentation given by Dr. Sylvia Earle at TED recently, and now available online:

Sylvia Earle's TED Prize wish to protect our oceans | Video on TED.com

For those unfamiliar with Dr. Earle, please see:

Sylvia Earle, Oceanographer Information, Facts, News, Photos -- National Geographic

or:

Sylvia Earle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I find her presentation inspirational, and I hope others do, as well.

TaoJones
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Old 21-02-2009, 03:30   #62
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Because it's NOT a latent virus...it doesn't become activated (enter a lytic state) upon UV irradiation.
Pete: Which isn't a latent virus (Herpes or SARS)?
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Old 21-02-2009, 04:16   #63
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gota love cruisers forum...full of global weather changing disblievers but sunscreen is a problem.
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Old 21-02-2009, 06:19   #64
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Pete: Which isn't a latent virus (Herpes or SARS)?
Gord: SARS isn't a classical latent virus (one that can lie dormant in the host for years until something sets it off), even though the clinical course of the disease does have a latent period. pete
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Old 21-02-2009, 06:28   #65
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My final comment on this thread (which is really drifting now, no thanks to me!): minimizing impact on the environment is truly admirable. It's always on my mind, although I may appear to be as passionate about it as some people clearly are. However, no matter what you do, you leave an impact on the earth. Not just because you're human; every species, every individual, every atmospheric and geologic event leaves an impact. The world is changing, physically, with or without you.

For the record, I also acknowledge that humans are the most environment-changing event that ever happened to earth. For this reason, I choose not to have children, ever. I think that minimizes my environmental footprint in a way that might be pretty tough to beat... pete
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Old 21-02-2009, 07:31   #66
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On the dilution factor

It is common to pursue the following logic

1. Does the suspected pathway of causality in fact exist? Is it theoretically plausible and can that plausibility be demonstrated?

This is what the article cited did. They answered the question Is it even possible that sunscreen can have an effect on coral? The answer is yes, you can make it happen on the corals that were in their study at the concentrations and durations they cite.

2. A second study would be "At what concentrations and durations is there a measurable effect of type we have identified? A subsidiary question would be to ask if their are threshhold effects or other non-montonicities in response.

This hasnt been done yet but would be an obvious follow on study for the labs doing the first work

3. Given the typical usage of sunscreen and the typical characteristics of water on and around reefs, what dilution levels are likely to be found in reality? This question has a theoretical answer which can be tested by going and collecting water samples.

4. Are the water sample results in 3 generalizable to all reefs? Again, this can be tested in a variety of locations.


It is quite common for the answer to a question like No.1 to be yes, but for all the subsequent questions to be no. That is why interpretation of results is important. None of the scientists, having gotten a yes to No. 1 would jump to conclusions on the answer to No. 4 without doing all of the work in between. Not only that, but there are many possible pitfalls and detours between 1 and 4 that could derail or intensify the effect (e.g. what about sunscreen in the presence of effluents from diesel engines? or sunscreen on days that are overcast vs. days that are sunny? or the effects at night vs. day? etc. etc.)

One study doesnt establish enough of a foundation to start making public policy. But on the other hand, if you want to use organic sunscreen nobody is going to stop you. As I noted above, my sister in law used it and it worked though it wasnt waterproof.
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Old 21-02-2009, 08:18   #67
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What happens to the assumed or calculated dilution facto(s), when one posits the intimate contact between a sunscreen-slathered diver and the coral?
ie: I touch the coral with my PABA greasy hands.
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Old 21-02-2009, 09:00   #68
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Studies like this seem to the lay person to be so academic as to be pointless (and, when public money is used to fund it, it drives some of us nuts). If you dumped that much Cheese Whiz into a tank with coral in it, you'd probably kill it. What does this tell us?

If the question is "Is sunscreen having an impact on coral reefs?" (and that is the important question, isn't it?) it seems that the very first thing you might want to do is actually go to a few reefs, take a few water and coral samples, then see if their is any sunscreen in the water or on the coral. If the answer is "no," then studies like the one we're talking about are pointless; we can move on to something else. Doing study after study, taking baby step after baby step, seems to do nothing but waste time and money.

I wonder . . . how much organic sunscreen does it take to get the same results they got with synthetic sunscreen. The coral don't know or care whether something is "organic." A chemical is a chemical - makes no difference if it was created in a lab or squeezed out of a plant.

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Old 21-02-2009, 10:59   #69
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Studies like this seem to the lay person to be so academic as to be pointless (and, when public money is used to fund it, it drives some of us nuts). If you dumped that much Cheese Whiz into a tank with coral in it, you'd probably kill it. What does this tell us?

If the question is "Is sunscreen having an impact on coral reefs?" (and that is the important question, isn't it?) it seems that the very first thing you might want to do is actually go to a few reefs, take a few water and coral samples, then see if their is any sunscreen in the water or on the coral. If the answer is "no," then studies like the one we're talking about are pointless; we can move on to something else. Doing study after study, taking baby step after baby step, seems to do nothing but waste time and money.

I wonder . . . how much organic sunscreen does it take to get the same results they got with synthetic sunscreen. The coral don't know or care whether something is "organic." A chemical is a chemical - makes no difference if it was created in a lab or squeezed out of a plant.

DGC
Hopefully not as much as each time they go in the water the coral gets a fresh dose. My "old style" gets put on once, maybe twice a day. Another study is required.
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Old 21-02-2009, 11:07   #70
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I am not a scientist, and was not able to read the full study, but I am just curious which sunscreens they tested? Sunscreen chemicals have changed a few times over the years.

They used to be mostly PABA based. They found out it caused a lot of skin irritation and allergic reactions so now most sunscreens advertise being PABA free. Now finding a PABA based sunscreen is fairly tough.

For quite a while the main full spectrum blocker was switched to titanium dioxide. It worked mostly based on its physical properties (high index of refraction) and still is found in almost any sunscreen that actually uses a physical blocker).

Now the current champ seems to be avobenzone. I am not sure why, other than that it is a great full spectrum sunblocker, but I believe TiO2 was better. Avobenzone also breaks down into constituent chemicals on UV exposure. So they have to use stabilizing compounds to keep the sunscreen efective.

My question is which chemicals did they test, are they currently in much use, and if so, will they be in much use for much longer given the 'relatively' (on a global scale) high rate of turnover on sunscreen chemicals?

Also I agree with many of the posters above. Anyone who knows real science only knows that it proves what it proves. All the wild parallels drawn are usually done by the groups with an agenda, or the media wanting a fancy story.

The study is saying that whatever chemicals they tested, in whatever concentrations they tested, kill the types of choral they tested, in the tested environement. That sunscreen is wiping out the world's coral is something NO scentist would ever say without a massive amount of study done.
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Old 21-02-2009, 11:08   #71
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You kind of wonder if the study was done for the purpose of keeping fair skinned gringos off the reefs?
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Old 21-02-2009, 12:17   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TaoJones View Post
Thank you for starting this thread, Colorado Dreamer. I cannot provide any information on the organic sunscreen you asked about, but I can provide a link to what I think is a wonderful, thought-provoking presentation given by Dr. Sylvia Earle at TED recently, and now available online:

Sylvia Earle's TED Prize wish to protect our oceans | Video on TED.com

For those unfamiliar with Dr. Earle, please see:

Sylvia Earle, Oceanographer Information, Facts, News, Photos -- National Geographic

or:

Sylvia Earle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I find her presentation inspirational, and I hope others do, as well.

TaoJones
Thank you for sharing that with me. What an amazing video. I STRONGLY encourage everyone on this forum to check it out!
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Old 21-02-2009, 21:16   #73
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You kind of wonder if the study was done for the purpose of keeping fair skinned gringos off the reefs?
Or by people who make money from skin cancer.

i.e. follow the money. It seems like it's always about "follow the money".

sad
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Old 21-02-2009, 21:19   #74
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A bit confused...?

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Originally Posted by Colorado Dreamer View Post
I would be more than happy to supply a list...



And that is where we differ. I live in a Strawbale home, consume power that comes from the sun, grow my own food, own a sailboat that has used less than five gallons of diesel in the last year, drive the same car I have driven since I was in High School, don't own a credit card, etc.

I prefer to leave the planet better than I found it, not worse.
This has been an enlightening/entertaining thread; many thanks to all of the contributors... I must congratulate Colorado Dreamer for living the dream...however, I am -respectfully- curious as to what your environmental justification may be for driving the same car since you were in high school. If I drove a car from my high school times, it would likely be a VW bug (the older style) and it would be a terribly polluting machine (may be I am giving away my age ) I expected you to drive a hybrid or so.

Fair winds!

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Old 22-02-2009, 02:26   #75
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I am not a scientist, and was not able to read the full study, but I am just curious which sunscreens they tested? ...
... The study is saying that whatever chemicals they tested, in whatever concentrations they tested, kill the types of choral they tested, in the tested environement. That sunscreen is wiping out the world's coral is something NO scentist would ever say without a massive amount of study done.
"... Different sunscreen brands, protective factors, and concentrations were compared, and all treatments caused bleaching of hard corals ...
Among the ingredients tested, butylparaben, ethylhexylmethoxycinnamate,
benzophenone-3 and 4-methylbenzylidene camphor caused complete bleaching even at very low concentrations(parabens accounts for 0.5% of sunscreen ingredients). Conversely, all other compounds tested (i.e., octocrylene, ethylhexylsalicylate,
and 4-tert-butyl-4-methoxydibenzoylmethane)and the solvent propylene glycol, which is also present in sunscreen formulations, had a minor effect or no effects when compared with controls.
These results suggest that sunscreens containing parabens, cinnamates, benzophenones, and camphor derivatives can contribute to hard-coral bleaching if released into natural systems..."

The authors made no such claim that sunscreen is wiping out the world's coral.
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