Once thought to water-insoluble, Texas researchers find clusters of buckyballs are water-soluble and inhibit bacterial growth at 0.5 ppm. Concerns are being raised about the threat to wildlife and water supplies.
You must be as old as me. Anyway, even at the time that was patently not a worry since Nature could easily replicate the environment polywater was formed under eg undersea capilliary action in porous volcanic silica.
I have become a bit more careful over the years, I'll admit. I had the chance to meet Dr. St.Georgi (a shame I forgot exactly how to spell his name) some years ago, and he mentioned the need for chemists to taste, to touch, to think.
I seldom taste chemicals anymore, and am a bit more careful even smelling them.
I am not an envirowhiner, as Uncle Al likes to say, but I believe that we have an obligation to safeguard what we can for the future, and that we have not done such a grand job up to now.
We live in a world where, arguably, we have dumped toxic mess into the oceans, we have overharvested fish until estimates indicate declines in the order of 90%. We use energy like we own most of the oil in the world and have a God given right to the rest.
Don't believe in global warming yet? Regardless of the cause, as the data stacks up you would have to be as unrealistic as Terri Schiavos family to ignore the trend.
In the UK, the cheapest supermarket chicken tastes of herring. But hey that is an improvement on Belgium where they were once found to taste of PCBs and dioxins at levels sufficient to maim and kill some of the flock. Somebody was making dodgy chicken feed with waste transformer oil as an ingredient! I wonder if they were ever prosecuted?
BTW Buckyballs have been around as trace components in soot for a very long time. It is just that nobody ever noticed or maybe they did, but failed to investigate and isolate it.
A friend of mine used to make buckyballs for a living, as a tech. Wearing a paper bunny suit and no respirator he used to reach into the reactor and scrape the stuff off the walls. Techs with longer arms had better production runs, they could reach into the tight spaces better. He described driving home dusted in orange powder.
I don't know if buckyballs are a health hazard or not, but that strikes me as damn irresponsible of his employer.