An attack on the use of unleaded petrol (ULP) has been launched by geopathologist, Peter Heindl, who also warns of the dangers of defective catalytic converters. Heindl, of the Institute of Geopathology of South Africa, describes lead-free petrol as a 'poison ejector'. He says that the ban of leaded petrol is not a progressive, environment-friendly initiative as many imagine it to be. He says that catalytic converters cannot withstand lead and high-powered engines cannot be operated with unleaded petrol (ULP) unless the petrol contains aromatics like benzine, which have to be added to the ULP. He says the European Union (EU) allows only 5% additive and the USA a maximum of only 1%, though investigations prove a presence of 19%. When one pumps 80 litres of ULP into a car's petrol tank, he claims that 5 kg of pure benzine enters the tank, forming the 'much-feared carcinogens', aromatic poly-nuclears (APN).
Heindl says the most commonly known APNs are benzopyrene, benzo-anthracene, cyren, phenantren and anthracen. He warns that even 1% benzine is too much, as it is highly poisonous. Benzine, he says, is absorbed by the human body through the inhaling of gases, but also through the skin and via the stomach and intestinal tract. A concentration will be found in the fatty tissue, bone marrow and central nervous system. Heindl claims that benzine can enter the blood and there convert into phenol (hydroxybenzene). Phenol is a carbolic acid and reacts highly acidic and works like a strong cell poison. Tiredness, weakness, insomnia, dizziness, nausea and palpitations can result. In advanced cases of bone marrow damage, mucus-membrane bleeding and nose tumours can develop, with a high risk of leukaemia.
Heindl quotes a chemist at the German environmental department as saying that all drivers should have to wear gas masks when filling up with ULP, advising that children and other passengers get out before the car enters the filling station, to ensure that they are not coming into contact with these damaging fumes during filling up with unleaded normal or premium petrol. He quotes Auto Bild as saying 960-Million litres of benzine (at a proportion of 3% in ULP) is flowing into German petrol tanks. The 'technical instruction for keeping the air clean' (TA-Luft) provided emission limits for benzine, but is seen by some experts as insufficient. He quotes 'official reports' that state that the average benzine content in large cities and in the blood of its citizens is five to ten times higher than in rural areas. He says the Neue Ärztliche medical journal warns people not to underestimate benzine emissions, stating that it has a leukaemia-generating effect and that a TV broadcast on the ZDF TV channel on May 20, 1989, stated that 1,000 persons die yearly from benzine vapours from petrol.
North-Rhine-Westphalia environmental affairs department, he says, has proclaimed benzine one of the most dangerous environmental poisons. Premium unleaded fuel, he claims, contains up to 4% methyl-tert-butyl-ether (MTBE) as an anti-knock agent. In Germany, where there are no speed restrictions on the highways, oils with good lubrication are needed. The anti-sludge agent zinc-dithio-phosphate is added, which reacts with MTBE, forming a highly poisonous combination. The EU environmental Ministers have agreed that future cars have to be equipped with catalytic converters. Heindl says cars using catalytic converters will use 20% more petrol on highways, 21% more on regional roads and 45% more in town traffic, because emitted exhaust gasses need more power to pass through the fine ducts of the honey-comb structure of the converter. He says the carcinogenic particles in diesel engine exhaust fumes, when compared to petrol engines, quickly neutralise as they bind with soot particles. Modern diesel engines even meet the strict US requirements. Engines have been made to run on plant-oil fuels because no technology can be above natural laws without damaging or destroying life.
These conditions are met by a pioneering German company, where technically sound 1- to 12-cylinder multi-fuel-diesel engines are suitable for running on plant-oil fuels with a duo-thermal combustion principle and a combustion area divided from the left-over air. Tests were done on 100 plant oils suitable for engine use and the molecular structure of these plant oils is ideal fuel for combustion as carbon dioxide, water, hydrocarbons, oxygen and plant nutrients are contained in a closed cycle.
The plant oils don't need special preparation to be used as fuel and refining chemical processes are not needed - filtered virgin oil can be used as it is pressed. One litre of plant oil contains 110g of hydrogen - 1.5 times more than clean liquid hydrogen. Hydrogen engines work with a 23% efficiency and plant oils raise efficiency to 40%. So, hydrogen technology is problematic, also having to be cooled down and kept at -253°C to be available in liquid form. Plant oils are free >from sulphur, heavy metals, benzol and aromatics. The sun's energy is enough to grow oil plants and an area the size of Saudi Arabia could supply an equivalent amount of oil as crude oil.
G.A. Ulmer, "Wie gefährlich ist der Katalysator? - Haben Sie Platinstaub in der Lunge?", ISBN: 3-924191-52-2
G.A. Ulmer, 'How dangerous is a catalytic converter? - Do you have platinum dust in your lungs?'
Benzene is a Carcinogen found in Gasoline / Chemical Safety PSA. Public domain video courtesy of NIH.
Gasoline contains benzene, depending on the source of gasoline, and countries, ranges of concentration of benzene in gasoline have been reported as 1 to 6%. Gasoline is also used as an industrial solvent and workers commonly experience inhalation and skin exposure. In my practice, it is not unusual to hear from workers that "I washed my hands with gasoline to remove paint daily" or "the smell was so strong that I got dizzy", demonstrating substantial exposure to gasoline ongoing on a daily basis. Since benzene is a known human carcinogen, it would be expected that gasoline will be also a hematopoietic toxic and cancer causing agent as well. Indeed, Aksey et al as early as 1928 reported aplastic anemia, and in 1941, Machele et al reported thrombocytopenia from gasoline intoxication. Other hematopoietic malignancies have been reported as a result of gasoline exposure. Epidemiological studies of workers and filling station attendees have shown genotoxic effects at very low benzene from gasoline vapor exposure. Brandt et al have demonstrated genotoxic effects in workers exposed to low levels of benzene from gasoline. Santos-Mello et al have shown chromosomal deletions in lymphocytes of workers exposed to gasoline as attendants. Infante et al reported hematopoietic malignancy in petrol exposed workers. Similar exposures to gasoline in garage mechanics and filling stations have been reported. What are the health effects of exposure to gasoline vapours? Gas cans emit pollutants such as hazardous air pollutants (HAP) and volatile organic compounds (VOC). These pollutants can contribute to health problems that may affect home-owners, their families, and the community. VOC can produce ozone, which may cause respiratory problems for those with cardiac or respiratory diseases. Chemicals in these substances can also react in the air to form ground-level ozone (smog), which has been linked to a number of respiratory effects. EPA has developed a Web site related to ground-level ozone. Benzene: Exposure to benzene may cause irritation of the skin, eyes, and upper respiratory tract as well as blisters due to dermal exposure. Long-term exposure to benzene may cause blood disorders, reproductive and developmental disorders, and cancer. EPA has collected extensive information on the health effects of exposure to benzene. When gasoline vapours collect in a closed environment such as a non-ventilated shed or garage, the potential for an explosion increases. Benzene is an aromatic hydrocarbon that is produced by the burning of natural products. It is a component of products derived from coal and petroleum and is found in gasoline and other fuels. Benzene is used in the manufacture of plastics, detergents, pesticides, and other chemicals. Research has shown benzene to be a carcinogen (cancer-causing). With exposures from less than five years to more than 30 years, individuals have developed, and died from, leukemia. Long-term exposure may affect bone marrow and blood production. Short-term exposure to high levels of benzene can cause drowsiness, dizziness, unconsciousness, and death.
What is the Unnamed Special Ingredient in Ethyl Gasoline (Lead) - 1950s
This 1950s commercial for Ethyl gasoline does not mention that the key ingredient is Tetra Ethyl Lead (TEL). The late 20th century environmental controversy over the phase-out of leaded gasoline is familiar to most people, since the transition to unleaded fuel occurred less than 20 years ago. The early 20th century controversy over the introduction of Ethyl brand leaded gasoline is not well known. A long-standing policy question of great importance has been whether technology is best shaped by private or by public interests. We are inundated with reasons to deregulate technology today, but the Ethyl conflict provides a cautionary tale about what happens when there is a vacuum of regulation. "Ethyl" brand leaded gasoline, a higher octane gasoline sold between 1923 and 1986, is now banned in most nations for public health reasons. Ethyl leaded gasoline is the confusing brand name choice for which was an anti-knock (octane boosting) gasoline additive discovered by General Motors researchers and introduced commercially in Ohio in 1923. Ethyl is also the corporate name of the joint GM-Standard Oil of New Jersey (Exxon) venture established in 1924 to market the additive. Since GM was 38 percent owned by the E. I. Du Pont de Nemours at the time, there were initially three partners. The general public first learned of TEL in late October,1924 when half a dozen workers went violently insane and then died, apparently from a mysterious poison they were making at a Standard oil refinery in New Jersey. When it became clear that this poison was being put into gasoline, and that other workers had died in similar refineries, a vehement public health controversy broke out. GM and Standard insisted that TEL was only dangerous in concentrated form at the refinery, not when diluted in gasoline. But public health scientists, including Dr. Alice Hamilton of Harvard, said it was an important public health question and insisted that safer alternatives should be used. An expert committee in January 1926, issued a report stating that there was "no good grounds for prohibiting the use of Ethyl gasoline," provided that its own investigation was not allowed to lapse. In fact, no independent investigations were continued, although Ethyl financed decades of research through the University of Cincinnati. In 1965 and 1966, scholarship and Congressional testimony, especially from Clair Patterson, a California Institute of Technology geochemist, showed that Ethyl's Cincinnati research was based on questionable and probably fabricated data. In 1972 the Environmental Protection Agency began a regulatory process that phased out leaded gasoline. Many studies, especially early studies by Herbert Needleman and associates, found children highly affected by leaded gasoline. The phase out process took until 1986 in the US, another 15 years in Europe and is still underway in most developing nations. The toxic effects of lead include damage to the nervous system, learning impairments and behavioural problems. High lead levels in many urban areas are from leaded gasoline more than lead paint. Concerns about damage from widespread lead poisoning turned out to have been justified, as Henderson, Hamilton and others foresaw in 1925. The story of their public health advocacy, especially with its emphasis on alternative technologies, deserves to be remembered. This description is primarily from the 2003 article, Ethyl: The 1920s Environmental Conflict Over Leaded Gasoline and Alternative Fuels, by William Kovarik, Ph.D. Read the entire article at http://www.radford.edu/~wkovarik/papers/ethylconflict.html#abs . Read a detailed account of this tragic history in the 2002 book Deceit and Denial: The Deadly Politics of Industrial Pollution, by Gerald Markowitz and David Rosner, University of California Press. This is clipped from a collection of Some Old Gasoline and Auto Engine Additive Commercials from the 1950s and 1960s available at the Internet Archive.
Benzene: Serious Side Effects Associated with Exposure
In this video, benzene is synthesized from the dry distillation of 81.9 grams of sodium hydroxide and 268.1 grams of sodium benzoate, both commonly available consumer products. It is then distilled, and dried before storage.
Though an extremely useful chemical in organic synthesis, benzene is a proven carcinogen and any exposure to it should be as limited as possible. Benzene is also easily flammable and proper precautions must be taken to prevent accidental ignition.