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SR-59 (2013-2014)

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Enrolled  August 25, 2014
Passed  IN  Senate  August 22, 2014


Senate Resolution
No. 59

Introduced by Senator Lieu

August 18, 2014

Relative to air quality


SR 59, Lieu.

WHEREAS, Aviation gasoline, or avgas as it is commonly known, is utilized in general aviation aircraft that are powered by internal combustion reciprocating piston engines; and
WHEREAS, Avgas is a leaded fuel and its combustion results in toxic air emissions of lead; and
WHEREAS, According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the operation of general aviation aircraft is the greatest source of lead emissions in California; and
WHEREAS, Lead that is emitted into the air can be inhaled or, after it settles out of the air, ingested. Ingestion of lead that has settled onto surfaces is the main way children are exposed to lead originally released in the air; and
WHEREAS, Once in the body, lead is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream and results in a broad range of health effects. Public health officials have concluded that there is no safe level of exposure to lead; and
WHEREAS, Children are especially susceptible to the toxic effects of lead. Exposure to lead can result in irreversible brain damage and reduce a person’s cognitive function; and
WHEREAS, Exposure to low levels of lead early in life have been linked to effects on a person’s intelligence quotient (IQ), learning, memory, and behavior; and
WHEREAS, Lead has been successfully removed from many consumer goods, including household paint and toys. Lead was successfully phased out of automobile gas in California in 1992; and
WHEREAS, The EPA adopted a similar program that phased lead out of automobile gasoline nationwide in 1996. However, despite successes of lead removal programs, avgas remains a public health threat due to its high lead content and toxic air emissions; and
WHEREAS, Lead content of avgas is regulated at the federal level. All fuels for air transportation must be certified as safe by the Federal Aviation Administration; and
WHEREAS, The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) together with the EPA has developed a goal to identify a viable unleaded avgas by 2018, which will ultimately eliminate lead emissions from piston engine aircraft; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, That the Senate supports the FAA’s initiative to certify safe unleaded aviation fuel for piston engine aircraft and encourages the FAA and the EPA to prioritize the development and certification of unleaded aviation fuel in advance of 2018; and be it further
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.