EPA Addresses Small Aircraft Emissions

(Daily360.com) – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is targeting small aircraft as a danger to the environment and people’s health. The EPA is claiming the small private airplanes that use leaded fuel ‘can’ cause air pollution, which they say is a public health danger. As a result they are looking to institute regulations for these airplanes.

The EPA will look to use power they believe they have under the Clean Air Act to regulate emissions for leaded fuel, piston engines. As a result of the EPA targeting these airplanes, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will inherit the task of determining what the new standard level for airplanes using leaded fuel emissions shall be.

EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in his opinion the “science is clear” and these fuel emissions “can cause” lifetime health effects “in children.” He went on to say the Biden-Harris Administration will “protect all communities” from what he calls the “serious threat” of lead air pollution.

The aircraft that use leaded fuel are older, small planes that can only transport between two and ten passengers. Commercial aircraft have been banned from using leaded fuel since 1996 as a result of the Clean Air Act. In 2022, the FAA, working with professionals in the aviation community launched the Eliminate Aviation Gasoline Lead Emissions Initiative that was supposed to do away with all leaded fuel airplanes but the year 2030.

After more than ten years of research the FAA finally approved an unleaded fuel for small airplanes in September of 2022. Small airplanes use piston engines which until the new fuel breakthrough could only get the power necessary to appropriately power the craft from leaded fuel. Experts in the field point to the government as the reason the unleaded fuel has taken so long to come to market. They say agencies like the EPA slow-walked approvals and red tape was excessively obstructive.

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