Darrell Grace (Letters; June 14) claims that water fluoridation has benefits.

Mary Byrne (Letters; June 17) makes clear how Darrell Grace is wrong with his claims about tooth decay statistics.

Examples from the 2015-16 NZ Dental School Statistics include children from non-fluoridated Christchurch and Nelson-Marlborough with less tooth decay than those from fluoridated Auckland and Counties Manukau; and non-fluoridated New Plymouth had less tooth decay than fluoridated Hawera.

Even the World Health Organisation statistics demonstrate there is no discernible difference in tooth decay between developed countries that fluoridate their water and those that do not, with a general trend of decline in overall rates of decay in developed countries.

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The studies Mr Grace alludes to are not the ones that point out that hydrofluorosilicic acid (HFA) is toxic [NZ Hazchem Class 6 (acutely toxic ) 7 (dangerous poison) & 8 (corrosive)]. HFA is also laced with a range of other heavy metals including aluminium, arsenic, lead, mercury and uranium, and fluoride is classed as more toxic than lead.

In the United States, fluoride toothpaste is not recommended for babies and children under three years.

At the end of the day, it is about choice. It is unfair to those who don't wish to drink fluoridated water to be forced to buy water.

RICK BAUM
Aramoho


Unbright lights

I have been asked to write to you about the new LED lights we have on our streets. Some people are finding them not as bright as those of former days.

As a driver, it is not nice to find someone in the dark about to step into the glare of my lights a few feet in front of me. Even at my slow speed that step might have been fatal.

I suggest pedestrians wear white or have a light when walking in the dark. Most school pupils I see in the early morning are wearing white, and that is great.

TOM PITTAMS
Whanganui


Bad practices

I wrote expressing my concern to the Wanganui Chronicle in August 2017, asking questions which no one answered on the subject of Mycoplasma bovis.

As an ex-veterinarian's wife, I know of the protocols set up to deal with any suspicious infections that hit our cattle, eg foot-and-mouth.

Immediate quarantine, meaning strict isolation of the farms in question. A basic, obvious response — not too difficult.

They are now trying to do just this, but why not back last July? This disease could have — should have — been nipped in the bud then.

Why is no one held to account, especially MPs? Totally ineffectual to the point of negligence, and the taxpayer is now lumped with enormous sums of money that should be going into schools and hospitals. Guy Nathan, as a farmer, would have known the probable repercussions.

Intensive farming encourages cross-infection, and cattle in cold, bleak areas are more vulnerable.

We've allowed pollution from this over-stocking to degrade our soils and pollute our waterways so badly that to keep advertising ourselves as being clean and green is a lie.

The corporate big factory farms in the central Otago-Canterbury region should never have been allowed. It's an iconic landscape and never suitable for dairying. How did they acquire this land?

To import stock food also invites new pathogens into the country; changing climate adds to the risks.

The tons of palm kernels from Asia should be banned — it's an industry causing massive deforestation and loss of habitat to endangered species in Indonesia.

Farmers need to re-evaluate their practices, and factory farms should be outlawed. And we need an inquiry into the Ministry for Primary Industries — they've been remiss in many areas.

ROSEMARY BARAGWANATH
Whanganui