|You are here:||About>News & Issues>Environmental Issues> Pollution> Lead Air Pollution - EPA May Abandon Health Standards for Lead Air Pollution|
EPA May Abandon Health Standards for Lead Air Pollution
Agency Decision Could Bring Back Leaded Gasoline
December 7, 2006—The Bush administration may eliminate health standards for lead air pollution that keep the lead out of gasoline—and out of the air—according to a preliminary staff review released this week by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
This is one of the most startling pieces of environmental news to trickle out of Washington, D.C., in this era of jaw-dropping regulatory pronouncements, because removing lead from gasoline is generally considered one of the most successful clean-air strategies of the past 30 years.
Why Eliminate Lead Air Pollution Health Standards?
Instead of the usual “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach, the EPA seems to be contemplating the less common “if it’s working, then break it” strategy.
U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., who will take over as chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform when Congress convenes in January, urged EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson to “renounce this dangerous proposal immediately” and said “this deregulatory effort cannot be defended.”
The Dangers of Lead Air Pollution
Over the past 30 years, the EPA has repeatedly missed the deadlines set under the Clean Air Act. While environmental groups have responded with lawsuits and public condemnations, lead smelters and refiners, and battery makers have all lobbied the administration to eliminate Clean Air Act standards on lead.
Dropping Health Standards for Lead Air Pollution “Dangerous and
But John Walke, a former EPA lawyer who is now the clean air director for the Natural Resources Defense Council, called the potential change “dangerous and idiotic.”
That sounds about right.
|All Topics | Email Article | Print this Page | ||
|Advertising Info | News & Events | Work at About | SiteMap | Reprints | Help||Our Story | Be a Guide|