Lead only makes the media stupid.
The United States banned leaded gasoline in 1995. But thousands of airplanes in Washington state still run on leaded fuel — and send toxic lead into the air when they do. KUOW’s John Ryan reports.
Most of the fuel burned by airplanes in this state is jet fuel. Jet exhaust has lots of pollutants, but it doesn’t have lead.
But most small planes burn a leaded fuel known as “avgas.” Half of all the lead pollution in America’s air comes from those planes.
KUOW has learned that Washington state ranks fifth in the country for airplane lead emissions.
The state’s biggest source is Boeing Field in Seattle. The Environmental Protection Agency says small planes taking off and landing at Boeing Field release more than half a ton of lead into the air each year.
Nationwide, there’s a lot less lead in the air than there was in decades past. But the heavy metal is so toxic that health researchers are concerned about even the smallest amounts…