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[DRAFT] Toxic Heavy Metals: The Mercury Strikes Back

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Wrapper
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[DRAFT] Toxic Heavy Metals: The Mercury Strikes Back

Postby Wrapper » Fri Jun 18, 2021 11:07 am

18-Jun-2021: OOC: Note that this is still a work in progress. Comments are welcome, as none of this is written in stone (except the preamble). Please try to stay in character in thread, that would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Toxic Heavy Metals, Act II
A resolution to increase the quality of the world's environment, at the expense of industry.
Category: Environmental
Industry Affected: All Businesses - Strong
Proposed by: Herby

SOMETHING something something dark side something something preamble;

The General Assembly HEREBY:

DEFINES the following:
  1. "heavy metal" as a metal that is relatively dense to other metals or has a high atomic number or atomic mass;
  2. a "toxic" material as one that is harmful, poisonous or can cause death or debilitating disease, including cancer;
  3. "toxic heavy metal" as a heavy metal that is toxic in relatively low to moderate concentrations, including (but not limited to) mercury, chromium, arsenic, lead and cadmium;
  4. "entity" as any person, company, corporation, cooperative, club, educational institution, or any division of national, state, provincial, county or municipal government, that may mine, process, use, or dispose of toxic heavy metals.
REQUIRES member nations to research alternatives to toxic heavy metals, where economically and technologically feasible;

MANDATES that entities reduce, reuse and recycle toxic heavy metals to the extent feasible under readily available technology;

DECREES that entities must provide employees, contractors, visitors, and any other persons who may contact toxic heavy metals during their processing, mining or disposal, with the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) as well as the appropriate and sufficient training in the use of such PPE;

TASKS the World Assembly Scientific Programme (WASP) to:
  1. generate a list of toxic heavy metals, including their compounds, that fit the above definitions to be covered under this regulation, including, at a minimum, mercury, chromium, arsenic, lead and cadmium;
  2. determine a de minimis concentration or quantity for each listed metal and compound, above which intentional discharge of the metal or compound into the environment is prohibited;
  3. determine a reportable quantity threshold for each listed metal and compound, above which accidental or intentional discharge of the metal or compound into the environment must be reported to WASP.
PROHIBITS the intentional discharge of a toxic heavy metal or its compound, in an amount above the de minimis concentration or quantity, into the environment, including unlined landfills;

CLARIFIES that member nations may permit the disposal of toxic heavy metals in landfills that are lined to prevent the contamination of groundwater or underlying soil, subject to extant and future international, national or local hazardous and/or solid waste laws and regulations;

BANS the future use of toxic heavy metals in constructing residential homes and other household items where they can leach and/or be ingested or consumed, especially by children; for example, in interior paints, solders in water piping joints, thermostats, ceramics, and other exposed surfaces;

IMPLORES member nations to incentivize the safe removal of such items from existing homes and their replacement with non-toxic materials;

DIRECTS entities to document and report the accidental release of toxic heavy metals above the reportable quantity threshold into the environment;

INSTRUCTS member nations to aggregate these reports on an annual basis, including documentation of any prohibited discharges, and submit these annual reports to WASP;

NOTES that member nations may set their own emission standards that are stricter than the de minimis quantities and concentrations set by WASP, or set additional reporting requirements above and beyond those required by this resolution.

Co-authored by Wrapper.

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Herby
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Postby Herby » Fri Jun 18, 2021 11:08 am

Okay you meat puppets, this is what me and the Wads came up with to protect your sorry asses from loud music I mean ehhhhh toxic heavy metals. Any questions?
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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Postby Jedinsto » Fri Jun 18, 2021 11:15 am

"I can say without reading much at all of the proposal text that these definitions are astronomically better than that #371. Criticisms will be provided eventually."

OOC: Based preamble, based thread title, submit it that way and you have my full support :P
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Postby Trellania » Fri Jun 18, 2021 11:33 am

Dame Allania Trueblood wanders in, then stops and looks over the resolution. She stops as she reaches then ban section, raises an eyebrow, and covers her mouth with her hand to avoid snickering.

"Um, Ambassadors, did you really mean to ban the use of modern technology in homes? Because cadmium is essential to modern computer technology, a number of artificial polymers like PVC, and quite a few other technologies. And chromium is an essential component of stainless steel as well as a number of other products. Lead is a common component in firearm ammunition, meaning you have effectively banned civilian ownership of firearms in many nations."

The knight looks up. "While I applaud the efforts of the ambassadors, the unintentional bans on modern technology this resolution creates as-written makes it even worse than the resolution it replaces."
Last edited by Trellania on Fri Jun 18, 2021 11:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Herby
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Postby Herby » Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:03 pm

Trellania wrote:Dame Allania Trueblood wanders in, then stops and looks over the resolution. She stops as she reaches then ban section, raises an eyebrow, and covers her mouth with her hand to avoid snickering.

"Um, Ambassadors, did you really mean to ban the use of modern technology in homes? Because cadmium is essential to modern computer technology, a number of artificial polymers like PVC, and quite a few other technologies. And chromium is an essential component of stainless steel as well as a number of other products. Lead is a common component in firearm ammunition, meaning you have effectively banned civilian ownership of firearms in many nations."

The knight looks up. "While I applaud the efforts of the ambassadors, the unintentional bans on modern technology this resolution creates as-written makes it even worse than the resolution it replaces."

What? Ehhhhhhhh what? No no no no. Intent was to ban stuff like lead paint, lead cookware, mercury thermostats, that kind of stuff. Okay so that needs fixin’, we’ll work on it. Thanks for the input, Allie. I mean ehhhh Dame Allie.
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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Postby Bears Armed » Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:10 pm

OOC: Leaving aside the possibility of any "species-wank" (such as players claiming that their nations haves people for whom some such materials are actually a dietary necessity rather than toxic, or at least that are immune to the 'toxic' effects...), I would suggest _

(0) Consider materials with carcinogenic, mutagenic &/or teratogenic properties as well as strictly "toxic" ones;
(1) Change the opening section of clause 3 from
"toxic heavy metal" as a heavy metal that is toxic in relatively low to moderate concentrations, including (but not limited to)
to something more like
"toxic heavy metal material " as a heavy metal or a 'heavy metal'-containing compound that is toxic in relatively low to moderate concentrations, including (but not limited to)
.
(2) In the list of materials that must be considered there, drop Chromium -- for which it is really only various compounds, rather than the metallic element itself, that poses a significant health risk to people -- but add Thallium;
(3) Add a clause about the storage & disposal of waste -- including 'flue dust' -- from mining & refining of ores, which may contain significant levels of such materials even [or especially] when those are not the actual elements that the mining/refining is carried out to obtain;
(4) Extend the restrictions on household use to cover the use of readily assimilable toxic materials in close proximity to domestic residences or the general public (e.g. to use a RL case, the use of Lead compounds in paints for garden fences, or even in cosmetics; e,g, [ii] the use of such compounds in pesticides or preservatives used on food crops & foodstuffs, or on textiles.
Last edited by Bears Armed on Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Wrapper
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Postby Wrapper » Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:24 pm

Bears Armed wrote:OOC:

OOC: OOC? You're NO FUN! :p

IC:

AHUME: Ari, Herby, a thought just occurred to me. Two thoughts actually. Maybe three....

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Bears Armed
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Postby Bears Armed » Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:32 pm

Wrapper wrote:
Bears Armed wrote:OOC:

OOC: OOC? You're NO FUN!

OOC [again :D ]: Sorry, but I personally know rather more about the matter than do any of my Mission's current staff...
The Confrederated Clans (and other Confrederated Bodys) of the Free Bears of Bears Armed
(includes The Ursine NorthLands) Demonym = Bear[s]; adjective = ‘Urrsish’.
Our population is approximately 20 million. We do have a national government, although its role is strictly limited. Economy = thriving. Those aren't "biker gangs", they're our traditional cross-Clan 'Warrior Societies'... and are generally respected, not feared.
Author of some GA Resolutions, via Bears Armed Mission; subject of an SC resolution.
Factbook. We have more than 70 MAPS. Visitors' Guide.
The IDU's WA Drafting Room is open to help you.
Author of issues #429, 712, 729, 934, 1120, 1152.

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Wrapper
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Postby Wrapper » Fri Jun 18, 2021 1:37 pm

Bears Armed wrote:
Wrapper wrote:OOC: OOC? You're NO FUN!

OOC [again :D ]: Sorry, but I personally know rather more about the matter than do any of my Mission's current staff...

OOC: I get it. Thanks for the suggestions. We will, however, keep chromium, with the modifier that it's hexavalent chromium compounds that need to be included.

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Wallenburg
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Postby Wallenburg » Fri Jun 18, 2021 9:19 pm

Wrapper wrote:"heavy metal" as a metal that is relatively dense to other metals or has a high atomic number or atomic mass;

How does that work? Every other metal is relatively dense compared to the least dense metal.
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Araraukar
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Postby Araraukar » Sat Jun 19, 2021 2:39 am

OOC: No support as long as you mention ceramics in your list of "easy leach" because it's not only absurd (at least for stoneware and porcelain) - you might as well ban the existence of the ores containing them, if erosion is going to be your answer on why ceramics are on the list - but also because I refuse to give away my favourite glaze colour! :P

Honestly, cobolt blue engobe and glaze are totally safe after they've been fired, it's only when it's still unfired that you should avoid skin contact... and as you're supposed to do that with all glazes with metal, including copper, I'm not entirely convinced it's the toxicity of the metal that's the point there.

Aside from that, why is WASP making the list, checking it twice?

Also, you need cobalt despite it also being a health hazard. And some metals are needed by other life forms, with very few metals that have no known biological role whatsoever. And that's just with RL Earth life that we know of.

On top of that, Wikipedia: "Heavy metals are generally defined as metals with relatively high densities, atomic weights, or atomic numbers." Given that's pretty much 1:1 with your definition, you're clearly using "heavy metal" in the dictionary definition and don't thus actually need to define it?

Having "harmful" in your toxic definition is likely to open the same problems as "potentially" in the previous resolution. Many things are harmful in large enough doses.

A legit question, though: how would you (and thus WASP) define a metal that is at least harmless in some forms, while also deadly in others (hexavalent chromium is 100-200 times more toxic than trivalent)? In RL obviously they go by the ion type, but your definition of a toxic heavy metal doesn't do that. In fact, one might argue your definition only goes by the elemental metal, not its ions, in which case WASP wouldn't count chromium as a toxic heavy metal at all. Same for antimony (though whether it counts as heavy metal depends on what the "heavy" comparison is to).

Actually, why does this any of this proposal be only about toxic heavy metals? Wouldn't just toxic metals in general be a better thing to focus on? Because "relatively dense" is woefully vague unless you spell "relative to what" as well.

P.S. You're welcome. ;)

Bears Armed wrote:OOC: Leaving aside the possibility of any "species-wank" (such as players claiming that their nations haves people for whom some such materials are actually a dietary necessity rather than toxic, or at least that are immune to the 'toxic' effects...)

OOC: Oh c'mon, you know perfectly well that even in RL plants don't get poisoned by the same metals with the same ease as animals - hardly species wank to extrapolate from known biochemistry. And that's even without me getting on PPU to complain about dietary needs restrictions. :P
Last edited by Araraukar on Sat Jun 19, 2021 2:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Herby
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Postby Herby » Sat Jun 19, 2021 5:34 am

I’ll let the Wads answer the chemistry questions (that ain’t my bag) but as far as this:

OOC: No support as long as you mention ceramics in your list of "easy leach" because it's not only absurd (at least for stoneware and porcelain) - you might as well ban the existence of the ores containing them, if erosion is going to be your answer on why ceramics are on the list - but also because I refuse to give away my favourite glaze colour!

That’s not what it says. It says that if the metal can leach into food — like with unfired ceramics as you mention — then it’s prohibited:
BANS the future use of toxic heavy metals in constructing residential homes and other household items where they can leach and/or be ingested or consumed

If it can’t leach then it isn’t banned. So if fired ceramics don’t leach heavy metals into food then they aren’t banned by that clause. Right?
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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Postby Araraukar » Sat Jun 19, 2021 9:12 am

Herby wrote:So if fired ceramics don’t leach heavy metals into food then they aren’t banned by that clause. Right?

OOC: So why mention ceramics at all? Because unfired ceramics is just clay. Hardened mud. And you would be banning MAKING the items, if only the finished product is not banned.
Last edited by Araraukar on Sat Jun 19, 2021 9:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
- Linda Äyrämäki, acting ambassador in the absence of miss Leveret
Araraukar's RP reality is Modern Tech solarpunk. In IC in the WA.
Giovenith wrote:And sorry hun, if you were looking for a forum site where nobody argued, you've come to wrong one.
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Postby Minskiev » Sat Jun 19, 2021 9:14 am

Support, and I haven't even read it. But I should do that.
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Herby
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Postby Herby » Sat Jun 19, 2021 10:29 am

Araraukar wrote:
Herby wrote:So if fired ceramics don’t leach heavy metals into food then they aren’t banned by that clause. Right?

OOC: So why mention ceramics at all? Because unfired ceramics is just clay. Hardened mud. And you would be banning MAKING the items, if only the finished product is not banned.

Okay, here’s a better idea that’s more in line with my aims. What if toxic metals were banned from dishes, cups and other household items that are clearly designed for children? In other words, cartoonish designs can’t have lead based pigments. That sort of thing. C’mon dude, think of the children!!!
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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Wallenburg
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Postby Wallenburg » Sat Jun 19, 2021 10:37 am

Herby wrote:
Araraukar wrote:OOC: So why mention ceramics at all? Because unfired ceramics is just clay. Hardened mud. And you would be banning MAKING the items, if only the finished product is not banned.

Okay, here’s a better idea that’s more in line with my aims. What if toxic metals were banned from dishes, cups and other household items that are clearly designed for children? In other words, cartoonish designs can’t have lead based pigments. That sort of thing. C’mon dude, think of the children!!!

I'm not sure that makes much sense policy-wise. Lead doesn't become non-toxic as you mature.
In the meantime you are here, and it’s beautiful, and escaping isn’t always something bad.
grestin went through the MKULTRA program and he has more of a free will than wallenburg does - Imperial Idaho
Kiu Ghesik wrote:harris' interpretation of bidenism and subsequent establishment of a bidenist vanguard party to root out malarkey and revisionist elements in society was revisionist in and of itself and should never have been implemented.

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Trellania
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Postby Trellania » Sat Jun 19, 2021 10:59 am

Herby wrote:
Araraukar wrote:OOC: So why mention ceramics at all? Because unfired ceramics is just clay. Hardened mud. And you would be banning MAKING the items, if only the finished product is not banned.

Okay, here’s a better idea that’s more in line with my aims. What if toxic metals were banned from dishes, cups and other household items that are clearly designed for children? In other words, cartoonish designs can’t have lead based pigments. That sort of thing. C’mon dude, think of the children!!!


OOC: I have to agree with Wallenburg. Lead remains toxic no matter how old you are and restricting this to children just doesn't cut it.

Ultimately, there's a very good reason why real-life regulations on toxic metals tend to be doorstoppers.

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Postby Wrapper » Sat Jun 19, 2021 12:05 pm

Wallenburg wrote:
Herby wrote:Okay, here’s a better idea that’s more in line with my aims. What if toxic metals were banned from dishes, cups and other household items that are clearly designed for children? In other words, cartoonish designs can’t have lead based pigments. That sort of thing. C’mon dude, think of the children!!!

I'm not sure that makes much sense policy-wise. Lead doesn't become non-toxic as you mature.

OOC: Actually, lead is more toxic to children than it is to adults. Source.

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Wallenburg
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Postby Wallenburg » Sat Jun 19, 2021 12:33 pm

Wrapper wrote:
Wallenburg wrote:I'm not sure that makes much sense policy-wise. Lead doesn't become non-toxic as you mature.

OOC: Actually, lead is more toxic to children than it is to adults. Source.

That still doesn't make it non-toxic to adults.
In the meantime you are here, and it’s beautiful, and escaping isn’t always something bad.
grestin went through the MKULTRA program and he has more of a free will than wallenburg does - Imperial Idaho
Kiu Ghesik wrote:harris' interpretation of bidenism and subsequent establishment of a bidenist vanguard party to root out malarkey and revisionist elements in society was revisionist in and of itself and should never have been implemented.

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Wrapper
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Postby Wrapper » Sat Jun 19, 2021 1:28 pm

Wallenburg wrote:
Wrapper wrote:OOC: Actually, lead is more toxic to children than it is to adults. Source.

That still doesn't make it non-toxic to adults.

OOC: Who said it was non-toxic to adults?

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Waldenes
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Postby Waldenes » Sat Jun 19, 2021 2:38 pm

“For now we will support this out of principle.”

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Wallenburg
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Postby Wallenburg » Sat Jun 19, 2021 2:53 pm

Wrapper wrote:
Wallenburg wrote:That still doesn't make it non-toxic to adults.

OOC: Who said it was non-toxic to adults?

The proposal to only apply lead protections to products specifically designed for children certainly suggests it.
In the meantime you are here, and it’s beautiful, and escaping isn’t always something bad.
grestin went through the MKULTRA program and he has more of a free will than wallenburg does - Imperial Idaho
Kiu Ghesik wrote:harris' interpretation of bidenism and subsequent establishment of a bidenist vanguard party to root out malarkey and revisionist elements in society was revisionist in and of itself and should never have been implemented.

King of Snark, Minister of World Assembly Affairs, Arbiter for The East Pacific

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Herby
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Postby Herby » Sat Jun 19, 2021 5:10 pm

Wallenburg wrote:
Wrapper wrote:OOC: Who said it was non-toxic to adults?

The proposal to only apply lead protections to products specifically designed for children certainly suggests it.

Okay okay I see your point. So what if we added something something to the preamble like “noting that toxic heavy metals are particularly harmful in the development of children” or something something like that to justify further restrictions on things like baby furniture, baby dinnerware, baby toys, baby clothing, etc.?
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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Araraukar
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Postby Araraukar » Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:06 am

Herby wrote:
Wallenburg wrote:The proposal to only apply lead protections to products specifically designed for children certainly suggests it.

Okay okay I see your point. So what if we added something something to the preamble like “noting that toxic heavy metals are particularly harmful in the development of children” or something something like that to justify further restrictions on things like baby furniture, baby dinnerware, baby toys, baby clothing, etc.?

OOC: If you also change the mandates to only apply to manufacturing of goods meant for children, then sure. But if you won't, then not sure what good would mentioning children be in the first place.

And you're still not addressing the point of "you acually are banning an item if you're banning the process of making it, just not the final, safe version of it".
Last edited by Araraukar on Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
- Linda Äyrämäki, acting ambassador in the absence of miss Leveret
Araraukar's RP reality is Modern Tech solarpunk. In IC in the WA.
Giovenith wrote:And sorry hun, if you were looking for a forum site where nobody argued, you've come to wrong one.
Coronavirus related. This too. And this. These are all jokes. This isn't. This is, again, but it's also the last one.
Apologies for absences, non-COVID health issues leave me with very little energy at times.

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Herby
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Postby Herby » Tue Jun 22, 2021 8:32 am

Araraukar wrote:
Herby wrote:Okay okay I see your point. So what if we added something something to the preamble like “noting that toxic heavy metals are particularly harmful in the development of children” or something something like that to justify further restrictions on things like baby furniture, baby dinnerware, baby toys, baby clothing, etc.?

OOC: If you also change the mandates to only apply to manufacturing of goods meant for children, then sure. But if you won't, then not sure what good would mentioning children be in the first place.

And you're still not addressing the point of "you acually are banning an item if you're banning the process of making it, just not the final, safe version of it".

Here’s the thing. Do we want to make an international criminal out of a grandma who resells her baby’s old dishware at a garage sale for 25 cents? Nah. So we ban the manufacture and import of toxic babystuff which will organically phase out their usage, and leave it up to individual nations to further restrict them as they see fit. I think that’s the best way to approach it.

FWIW We’re taking our time on this, we want to make sure we do this right so that it won’t be repealed, also it’s my first GA resolution so I want to make sure I don’t screw things up. And besides Wrapper (who is really just doing the technical stuff and the OP editing since it’s impossible to do on a phone or a small tablet) is back to working from work and not working from home anymore so he doesn’t have all the free time he used to so we’ll address things kinda slowly at this point. We figure we’ll have an edited draft sometime this weekend.
-- Ambassador #53. From the nation of Herby. But you can call me Herby.

Herby's doors and windows are ALWAYS locked when she's in the Strangers' Bar (unless she unlocks them for you). And, she has no accelerator, a mock steering wheel, and no gear shifter. So, no joyrides.

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