Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search


Anti-Fluoride Campaigners Bamboozle With Pseudoscience

Anti-Fluoride Campaigners Bamboozle With Pseudoscience

ROTORUA. 26 September 2012. Local bodies will continue to be bombarded with pseudoscience by anti-fluoride campaigners, Dr Stephen Palmer, Medical Officer of Health from the National Fluoride Information Service told the Water New Zealand conference in Rotorua today.

“In the absence of clear facts, pseudoscience works well - as toxicology and epidemiology are so specialised. Yet, these are the very tools that show that fluoridated water supplies are effective in preventing tooth decay, especially for the most disadvantaged sections of the population, and the lower doses used these days are safe,” Dr Palmer told the conference.

His presentation, entitled The Tale of Two Cities, showed how New Plymouth and Lower Hutt responded to sustained and very active campaigns to stop fluoridating their local water supplies.

He said the campaign in New Plymouth overwhelmed local councillors who considered the issue during their 2011 Annual Planning process. “Councillors were subjected to intense pressure from the anti-fluoride lobby using a range of tactics. These included sophisticated videos which were heavy on emotion and conspiracy. Selective use of studies and research findings, downplaying or ignoring evidence, emotion, and misrepresentation of the truth all bamboozled councillors.

“The case put forward by the Taranaki DHB was overwhelmed by the sheer number of submissions and emotion that resulted in a decision to abandon the fluoridation of New Plymouth’s water supply.

“On the other hand, when a similar campaign emerged in the Hutt Valley a rational approach, expert evidence and strong support from the local DHB meant the voice of reason was able to prevail. In the Valley those residents wanting fluoride-free water can still access the Buick Street water pump, but the reticulated water supply remains fluoridated”.

Dr Palmer produced statistics that showed the benefits of fluoridation of water supplies, and warned the largely local body representatives at the conference that the anti-fluoride campaign will continue, populated with its beguiling - but erroneous claims.

“Science is a rigorous process which endeavours to ensure that results are correct and safe. Anti-fluoride campaigners’ messages are not founded on science or fact. They are an excellent example of pseudoscience which might sound clever, but in reality is based on fear, innuendo, convenient half-truths and emotion,” Dr Palmer told the conference.


More information:

National Fluoride Information Service (NFIS) [Part of Hutt Valley DHB]


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Stats NZ: Largest Drop In Terms Of Trade In A Decade As Dairy Export Prices Sour

Lower export prices for dairy, meat, and logs in the September 2020 quarter led to the biggest drop in terms of trade since June 2009, Stats NZ said today. Export prices fell in the September 2020 quarter, down 8.3 percent from its highest ever ... More>>


Stats NZ: Election Boosts October Job Numbers

Job numbers were boosted by general election staff in October 2020, along with rises in the manufacturing, retail, and hospitality industries, Stats NZ said today. Filled jobs rose by 27,667 to 2.2 million in October 2020 compared with September, after ... More>>

Government: New Year Border Exception For Seasonal Workers In The Horticulture And Wine Industries

2000 additional RSE workers to enter New Zealand early next year employers must pay these workers at least $22.10 an hour employers will cover costs of managed isolation for the RSE workers RSE workers will be paid the equivalent of 30 hours work a week ... More>>


Media: Discovery, Inc. Completes Acquisition Of New Zealand’s Mediaworks TV Ltd

Auckland, New Zealand, December 1, 2020 - Discovery, Inc. (“Discovery”), the global leader in real-life entertainment, has completed its acquisition of New Zealand’s leading independent free-to-air commercial broadcaster, MediaWorks TV Ltd, now operating ... More>>

Department Of Conservation: Big Year Underway At Albatross Colony

Familiar faces are returning for the new season of Royal Cam, with a big breeding year underway for the toroa/northern royal albatross colony on Otago’s windswept Pukekura/Taiaroa Head. More than 120 albatrosses, a taonga species, have returned ... More>>

Real Estate: ASB Survey Reveals Majority Of Kiwis Expect House Prices To Keep Climbing


House price expectations are soaring as New Zealand’s housing market shifts up a gear. But stretched affordability is putting a dent in perceptions of whether it’s a good time to buy. While Kiwis reveal they do expect interest rates to fall further. ... More>>

Stats NZ: Births And Deaths: Year Ended September 2020

Births and deaths releases provide statistics on the number of births and deaths registered in New Zealand, and selected fertility and mortality rates. Key facts For the year ended September 2020: 57,753 live births and 32,670 deaths ... More>>