Fluoride Action Network

Fluoride Kills Ponderosa Pines

Source: Herald-Dispatch (California) | April 30th, 1970
Industry type: Steel Industry

LAKE ARROWHEAD – The majestic pines have made the Lake Arrowhead region one of California’s favorite playlands. Today, the familiar sound of the wind whistling through the primeval forests is being replaced with shattering echoes of chain saws cutting up timber from over a thousand acres of damaged trees.

Lake Arrowhead is big ecological news. Students, politicians, and ecologists are televised at the scene, voicing their outrage and despair. If you asked them what caused the devastation, they would unhesitatingly reply, “smog”, or “ozone”.

Fluoride, which is the prime suspect, would not be mentioned. The dying trees are known to be specially susceptible to fluoride damage. News of fluoride pollution is kept from the public by putting the blame on something else.

Fluoride air pollution from an aluminum plant wiped out a fifty square mile area of ponderosa pine trees in Spokane, Washington some twenty years ago. More recently fluoride from a steel mill destroyed a stand of ponderosa in the French Alps.

Neither Los Angeles nor San Bernardino County Air Pollution authorities have reported any independent studies on these pines. The only way this reporter could determine whether fluoride was involved was to do a little sleuthing. The place to start was Arrowhead. The rangers up there pointed out the dying pines which showed the tell-tale yellowing on some of the needles, and gave permission to remove some of the boughs.

The sample branches were taken to Griffin-Hasson Laboratories in Los Angeles for analysis. The laboratory report disclosed a fluoride content of as much as 79 parts per million (ENOUGH TO KILL THEM). The Canadian Research Council report showed fluoride content of 72 to 80 parts per million fluoride after exposure to as little as 11/2 to 10 parts per billion fumigation with hydrogen fluoride gas. Analysis was made as soon as the pine needles showed damaging foliage burn.

It is now up to the pollution authorities to expose the source of the deadly poison. A Fontana steel mill which started up in the valley below, a few years before the trees were damaged would be a good bet. The prevailing winds are westerly, and you can stand in front of the mill and watch the effluent from the Steel stack billow up the valley in the direction of Arrowhead. There may be some other source.

The public has long been given a “snow” job by the “experts”. Ralph Nader has given a booster shot to those who have sought honest answers regarding fluoride effects. He has taken a peek behind the fluoride curtain and he doesn’t like what he sees. In campus talks he is telling the students that the government is not doing the job. He charged that scientists can’t ask the right questions and still get public subsidies for research.

Mr. Nader said: “There is a moratorium on studying the hazards of total fluoride intake because it has been decreed so by ‘political’ scientists masquerading as scientists”. That is bound to raise some hackles in Washington. He created a tidal wave with his book, “Not Safe at any Speed”. Will we only get some action if he writes one about fluoride and calls it, “Not Safe at any Dose”?

Finding enough fluoride in the pines to cause the damage was not the first time informed skepticism paid off. Fluoride is listed among the top three most serious air contaminants. Measurements taken in some major cities show dangerous concentrations.


L.A. Times

Oct. 15,1976

National Forests in State Damaged by Smog

Tens of thousands of pine trees in California’s national forests have been damaged by air pollution, according to the state Air Resources Board. Agency officials in Fresno said a recent U.S. Forest Service survey indicated damage is obvious in trees in the Sierra, Sequoia and Los Padres national forests and in Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park. Officials said they have long observed hands of smog rising from the San Joaquin Valley. “There is nothing we can do about. it.” one official remarked.


Public Interest Report (1978)
Environmental Education Group

Fluoride Fallout from Factories

by Gladys Caldwell (author, Fluoridation & Truth Decay)

The vast ponderosa pine forests at the popular vacationland at Lake Arrowhead, San Bernardino Mountains, are fast becoming a wasteland. In 1971 EPA funded a $10 million dollar, 10-year study to University of California campuses to determine what effect “smog” has on these trees. Seven years later we see scientists gathering data with the use of a Porometer which was developed through the grant. They are still mystified although the Kaiser Steel mill wafts its emissions from the valley below…other ponderosa forests in other states were destroyed by fluoride emissions…Kaiser admits they belch 2000 lbs F/day from their stacks; it cost me $40.00 for 4 analyses which showed 79 ppm F in the needles, enough to kill them…and Dr. Bingham on the right said he had never heard of fluoride pollution of trees – would take up the questions at their next seminar, but apparently never did.

In an article titled FLUORIDE EMISSIONS OF COAL-FIRED POWER PLANTS AND THEIR IMPACT UPON PLANT AND ANIMAL SPECIES, USA and Univ. of Montana researchers Carlson, Tourangeau and Gordon report – “The 40 lbs/day F emissions are substantial enough to accumulate at excessive levels to cause an impact upon the foliage of ponderosa pine and to increase the fluoride levels in the femurs of deer mice.” FLUORIDE Jrn. Int. Soc. for Fluoride Research APR. 1977