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Lead in Air

Basic Information

Nature and Sources of Lead

In the past, motor vehicles were the major contributor of lead emissions to the air. As a result of EPA's regulatory efforts to reduce lead in on-road motor vehicle gasoline, air emissions of lead from the transportation sector, and particularly the automotive sector, have greatly declined over the past two decades.  Major sources of lead emissions to the air today are ore and metals processing and piston-engine aircraft operating on leaded aviation gasoline.  The highest air concentrations of lead are usually found near lead smelters.  Other stationary sources are waste incinerators, utilities, and lead-acid battery manufacturers.

Learn more about lead in paint, dust and soil

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