May 24

Are Game Consoles Hazardous to Health?

Could it be that in the console war between the Xbox 360, PS3, and the Wii, the casualty are the players? Considering that my players include a 13-year old kid and 2 younger boys, this can be alarming news for Moms like me. I want all my boys to get the best out of their childhood. As much as possible, I want to balance learning with enjoyment. Thus, I got them the best consoles to make their leisure the best ones possible.

Greenpeace released in their new Playing Dirty report that all three home video game consoles, Sony’s PS3, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Nintendo’s Wii, tested positive for hazardous chemicals such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC), beryllium, bromine, and phthalates.Phthalates were found in relatively high levels in both the Xbox 360 and PS3. These are not allowed as components in toys or any childcare product. But game consoles are not classified as toys and thus, are not subject to existing legislation.

All three systems also contained significant levels of bromine which has been linked to impaired memory functions and other health problems. One of the phthalates found in the 360 and PS3 is also known to cause problems with sexual development in mammals.However, they also indicated that the three console manufacturers have “avoided or reduced uses of individual hazardous substances in certain materials within their consoles.” As such, if would be possible to make a green console if the 3 manufacturers combined efforts to do.

Please . . . I’d really like to have grandchildren.

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