Auto Emissions

Auto Emissions

As long as automobiles have existed, they have spewed dangerous toxins into the air. The content and volume of these emissions have changed over the years. When leaded gasoline was the norm, the blood lead levels of the American population were significantly higher than they are today. Before catalytic converters, smog was an even worse problem, especially in car-heavy cities like Los Angeles. Currently, America's cars contribute to a staggering one-fifth of our nation’s carbon emissions and almost half of global automotive carbon emissions. 

Cry Wolf Quotes

Our feeling was and still is that there is no scientific reason for not relaxing regulations. [Easing lead rules would] save billions of dollars in the balance of payments and also of million of barrels of crude oil a year.

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Dr. Jerome F. Cole, director of environmental health for the Lead Industries Association. The New York Times.

We have consistently opposed mandatory fuel economy standards as unnecessary. Because it is clearly in our self interest to meet customer requirements on fuel economy improvements, as demonstrated by our own high mileage m.p.g. small cars recently announced.

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Rodney Markley Jr., VP of Washington Staff for Ford, Chicago Tribune

You could wake up with egg on your face if you force a double cost on the consumer.

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Malcolm McDuffle, president of Mohawk Petroleum. The Los Angeles Times.

[A level of 10 micrograms per 100 milliliters of blood is] absolutely safe…There is no national health crisis with regard to lead.

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Werner T. Meyer, president of the Lead Industries Association. The New York Times.

Evidence

Backgrounders & Briefs

The Success of CAFE Standards

How the CAFE standard and its successes.

The Secret History of Lead

This immense article is an intricately detailed history of leaded gasoline, from the industry's early cover-ups to their attempts to defeat EPA regulations.

The Removal of Lead From Gasoline: Historical and Personal Reflections

First-person historical analysis of the leaded gasoline fight.