EDITOR: Brenda Adelman ("Science on our side," Letters, Feb. 17) claims science is on the side of fluoride opponents, but nothing could be further from the truth. The overwhelming weight of scientific evidence confirms fluoridation's safety and effectiveness, and hundreds of peer-reviewed studies on fluoride have discredited anti-fluoridation propaganda. For many years, panels of experts from different health and scientific fields have provided strong evidence that water fluoridation is safe and effective. Fear-mongering and the spreading of misinformation will probably continue, but the scientific community is solidly in favor of fluoridation.
EDITOR: I see that adding fluoride to the water is expected to cost "up to $8.5 million in capital upgrades to the county's central water system, plus ongoing upkeep starting at $973,000 a year" ("County moving ahead on fluoride," Friday).
It is outrageous that the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors is even considering spending this amount of money on such a project Our water is already extremely expensive, and water use is not optional.
If dental health of low-income children is the issue, imagine how far this money would go in topical fluoride treatments, health education and possible nutritional supplementation.
In addition, the debate about the safety and efficacy of adding fluoride to water continues, and many communities worldwide and in the United States are ending fluoridation of water.
ELLEN VAN ALLEN