Get the Lead Out! Webinar

Get the Lead Out: How Santa Clara County Banned Leaded Aviation Fuel at Reid-Hillview Airport, and Why Boulder Should Do the Same

The ANC was privileged to host a webinar on June 12, 2024 with Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez and epidemiologist Dr. Bruce Lamphear. Our guests discussed Santa Clara County's study showing that blood lead levels of children were correleated with living near and downwind of the Reid-Hillview Airport, and Santa Clara County's path to ceasing the sale of leaded aviation fuel.

Watch the video and get the transcript in the full post...

Across the nation, communities are suffering harm due to lead pollution from general aviation. Shockingly, piston aircraft are still burning leaded aviation fuel, 30 years after lead was banned from automotive gasoline. Upon burning, 95% of the lead in aviation fuel is emitted into the environment as nano particles that are too small to filter. Aircraft are the primary source of lead emissions in the United States today.

This webinar covers: 

  • How and why Santa Clara County initiated a study of lead blood levels in children near Reid-Hillview Airport, which was published in the proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
  • Study design, findings, and implications, including serious health impacts to children near the airport, and applicability to other airports such as Boulder’s.
  • The County’s decision to immediately cease sales of leaded aviation fuel at Reid-Hillview based on the study results, despite the FAA mandate to continue selling leaded fuel at all general aviation airports.
  • Follow-up action from the FAA and aviation groups.

The Reid-Hillview study was part of the scientific fact base leading to the October 2023 EPA endangerment finding for leaded aviation fuel. In an EPA press release about the endangerment finding, EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan described the need to “protect all communities from the serious threat of lead pollution from aircraft.” 

Watch the webinar video: 



Read the webinar transcript and key take-aways.