Regulations: Putting the Knock on Lead

Putting the Knock on Lead

Thanks to emission-control equipment installed on new autos since 1975, the air over U.S. cities is cleaner than it was ten years ago. Even so, millions of cars continue to spew out microscopic particles of a toxic pollutant: lead. Last week the Environmental Protection Agency told refiners that by next January they must eliminate 90% of the lead they put in leaded gasoline. The EPA said it is proposing a ban on all such fuel by 1988.

Leaded gas, which has been used for decades to prevent engine knock, still accounts for some 45% of all gasoline sales. But lead poisoning...

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