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Silicosis: The Dangers of Foxconn’s LCD Manufacturing

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With our elected officials being blinded by dollar signs and reelection polls, it has been easy for them to sleep at the wheel of environmental protection.  Unsolicited unilateral environmental rollbacks should serve as a canary in a coal mine. But what of environmental conditions for the workforce inside the new Foxconn facility- so many chemicals, so much time…some have said that the weight of the chemicals used in making the TFT-LCDs will be more than the actual units produced themselves.  

Studies have indicated a multitude of potential risks all throughout the Foxconn supply chain, at present.

One such risk is prevalent in all semiconductor manufacturing businesses and begs the question, “Will it be a problem in the Wisconsin facility?”  All of the various makers of semiconductors from ADM to Texas Instruments used trillions of gallons of deionized water, hundreds of millions of cubic feet of bulk gases (much of which is poisonous), and millions of pounds of acids and solvents.

Workers are vulnerable to dangerous toxins and carcinogenic chemicals that can harm mucous and pulmonary tissue, as well as the reproductive system.

Crystalline silica dust has a well-documented history of increasing incidents of stomach and lung cancer, as well as leukemia. Could be that, in Wisconsin there will be mostly assembly and not as much manufacture, but what they will actually be doing seems to be a well-guarded secret from the public who will be most affected.

Foxconn CEO Gou’s own brother died from Leukemia and Mr. Gou has vowed to put large sums of money and support behind the fight against cancer-perhaps part of his battle might be in the form of substitute ingredients that go into making Foxconn products?

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