LEAD Action News

LEAD Action News Vol 1 no 4 Summer 1993   ISSN 1324-6011
Incorporating Lead Aware Times ( ISSN 1440-4966) and Lead Advisory Service News ( ISSN 1440-0561)
The journal of The LEAD (Lead Education and Abatement Design) Group Inc.

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Report To The First Meeting Of The Working Party Of Government

Present Situation in Development of Lead Abatement Strategy

by Alan Cummine, Advisor to Ros Kelly, Federal Environment Minister

Sequence of Key Decisions

March   Election commitment to reduce lead in petrol;

May       ANZECC (Australian and New Zealand Environment and Conservation Council) decision to develop a national strategy to reduce exposure to lead;

June      NHMRC (National Health and Medical Research Council) revised its guidelines for lead in blood down to 10 µg/dl and called for an immediate national education and envir­onmental management strategy especially for lead in petrol;

July        Roundtable Conference on Lead in Petrol, attended by Common­wealth and State Ministers, and a wide range of national groups from industry, unions and the community;

August    Public release of RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) report to NHMRC;

October   ANZECC endorsed the direction of the Roundtable Conference on Lead in Petrol, and endorsed the progress with development of the national lead education campaign.

Agreements reached at Roundtable and follow-up action so far

  • Reduction of lead in leaded petrol to 0.2 g/L at 96 RON by end of 1994 in Victoria and New South Wales and by end of 1995  in other States (subject to reduction in total octane demand), and phase-out as soon as possible.

  • Assessment of the effects of lowering the octane rating, now begun by the oil companies. Investigation of substitute additives for lead to be funded in 1993/94 and 1994/95 ($1.0m per year);

- supplemented (as of October 20) with testing of proprietary additives and devices ($1.0m over two years); new funds for R&D into improvement and· testing of ethanol fuels ($3.94m over two years); and a bounty to ­assist market development for ethanol fuels ($25m over three years, beginning in 1994/95).

  • National education campaign - Broadly based, but with lead in petrol a key element. Commonwealth funds approved for 1993/94, to be supplemented by industry. Consultative process set up. Strategy endorsed by ANZECC on October 15. Free media component started ($4.0m over two years).

  • Surveys and monitoring of blood lead levels to improve knowledge of the extent of the problem and to evaluate the effectiveness of the measures. Funds approved for 1993/94 ($1.0m with rollover provisions).

  • Price differential for leaded petrol. Crucial to the switch. Now decided at 2 cents/L (1 cent in February 1994 and another 1 cent in August 1994).

  • Further consideration of the public transport option. For consideration by this working party of government.

  • Change name of "Super" to "Leaded" petrol (likely to be done as part of the national lead education campaign).

  • Investigation of how Premium ULP could help (to be considered by the Technical Working Group of the National Lead Abatement Strategy Consultative Committee)

  • Support for development of a broad national lead abatement strategy (see below).

  • Development of Lead Abatement Strategy

  • The National Strategy on Environmental Lead Abatement will be done under the auspice of ANZECC. Will draw upon the recommendations of the RMIT report to the NHMRC, and be consistent with work already proceeding via the NSW Lead Task Force, in which the Commonwealth participates. This Working Party of Government will bean important part of the Commonwealth's consultative process.

  • CEPA (Commonwealth Environment Protection Authority) has set up a Lead Abatement Task Force to co­ordinate and administer the process.

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Last Updated 11 November 2012
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