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Rule Strengthening Reporting Requirements for Lead Emissions, The White House, Washington, D.C.

Remarks of Governor Christine Todd Whitman,
Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,
regarding a rule
Strengthening Reporting Requirements for Lead Emissions
The White House, Washington, D.C.

April 17, 2001

Good afternoon.

I am pleased to announce that the President is taking action that will help protect America’s children from lead poisoning.

Lead poisoning can cause learning problems, brain damage, and hyperactivity in children.

Although progress has been made over the past 30 years in reducing elevated lead levels in children, the President believes we can do more.

That is why EPA will put into place much more stringent reporting requirements for companies that use lead and release it into the air, water, or land.

Under this rule, any facility that manufactures, processes, or uses 100 pounds or more of lead a year will have to report that to the EPA.

Previously, the threshold for reporting was as high as 25,000 pounds annually.

With this rule, 3,600 facilities that have not previously had to report on their lead storage, use, or release will now have to do so.

This will significantly increase the public’s knowledge about lead emitting facilities in their communities.

Information is power, and this new rule will give America’s families the information they need to protect their children.

We have found that the more information we have about toxic emissions, the more those emissions have been reduced.

We have every expectation that this new reporting requirement will result in real deceases in the amount of lead released into our air, water, and land.

We will work with those companies affected by this new rule to help them meet their reporting obligations.

We will also continue to work with industry to help them voluntarily reduce lead and other releases to the environment.

This action builds on previous efforts to reduce lead exposure, including eliminating the use of lead in gasoline and other sources, such as plumbing parts and soda cans.

This action reflects the President’s strong commitment to protecting America’s children from the damaging effects of lead poisoning.

President Bush and his Administration will continue to protect the health and well-being of the American people through appropriate environmental measures.

Thank you