Off-the-scale Nannystatism

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Why we want to be as little like Europe as we possibly can (except for the food). From the Times of London:

THE stops could be pulled for ever on many church organs because of an EU directive designed to control hazardous substances.

The instruments at Salisbury Cathedral, St Paul's in London, Worcester Cathedral, St Albans Abbey and Birmingham Town Hall are among the first that may be silenced. They are due to be refurbished or rebuilt and will fall foul of the directives, which are aimed at limiting the amount of lead in electrical items. 

The regulations permit electrical equipment to have a maximum of 0.1 per cent of their weight as lead. Organ pipes have a lead content of 50 per cent or more and the Department of Trade and Industry has advised organ builders that, in the interests of directive harmony, they must 'prepare to comply'. Though pipe organs are essentially mechanical devices, they use electric motors to power the blowers that move air through the pipes.

The great Harrison and Harrison organ at the South Bank, which is now in pieces in Durham as part of the refurbishment of the Royal Festival Hall, is under immediate threat. Under EU Directive 2002 95/EC RoHS and EU Directive 2002 96/EC WEEE, it will technically be illegal to reinstall it.

But before you berate the Eurobatties too enthusiastically, keep in mind that the 2005 version of the Federal Register ran to 77,752 pages and that compliance with government regulations cost this country $1.1 trillion last year — roughly $3,660 for every single American.

Dennis Sevakis   3 18 06

Why we want to be as little like Europe as we possibly can (except for the food). From the Times of London:

THE stops could be pulled for ever on many church organs because of an EU directive designed to control hazardous substances.

The instruments at Salisbury Cathedral, St Paul's in London, Worcester Cathedral, St Albans Abbey and Birmingham Town Hall are among the first that may be silenced. They are due to be refurbished or rebuilt and will fall foul of the directives, which are aimed at limiting the amount of lead in electrical items. 

The regulations permit electrical equipment to have a maximum of 0.1 per cent of their weight as lead. Organ pipes have a lead content of 50 per cent or more and the Department of Trade and Industry has advised organ builders that, in the interests of directive harmony, they must 'prepare to comply'. Though pipe organs are essentially mechanical devices, they use electric motors to power the blowers that move air through the pipes.

The great Harrison and Harrison organ at the South Bank, which is now in pieces in Durham as part of the refurbishment of the Royal Festival Hall, is under immediate threat. Under EU Directive 2002 95/EC RoHS and EU Directive 2002 96/EC WEEE, it will technically be illegal to reinstall it.

But before you berate the Eurobatties too enthusiastically, keep in mind that the 2005 version of the Federal Register ran to 77,752 pages and that compliance with government regulations cost this country $1.1 trillion last year — roughly $3,660 for every single American.

Dennis Sevakis   3 18 06