Environmental and Occupational Exposure Risks to Avgas in Puerto Rico
Zimmetry Environmental provides lead and other testing and monitoring services to protect workers, the public and the environment from exposure to heavy metals and other pollutants.
Bayamon, Puerto Rico, August 23rd, 2021 -- There are a number of commercial, military, public-use and even private airports throughout the islands of Puerto Rico. Many of these airports are used by piston-engine aircraft that operate on leaded aviation gasoline, also known as avgas. Avgas from these aircraft are the largest remaining aggregate source of lead emissions to air in the United States according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reports that owners and operators of more than 167,000 piston-engine aircraft operating in the United States rely on avgas to power their aircraft. Avgas is the only remaining lead-containing transportation fuel. The lead in avgas prevents damaging engine knock, or detonation, that can result in a sudden engine failure. Unfortunately, lead is a toxic substance and this is why the FAA, EPA and industry are partnering to remove it from aviation gasoline in the future.
Back in 2019, FAA published the fact sheet Leaded Aviation Fuel and the Environment. In it, tetraethyl lead, or TEL, is described as the compound that contains lead that is used as an additive to boost octane. The publication also shares the fact that the ban of TEL in automobile gas was phased in over a number of years and was largely completed by 1986, resulting in significant reductions of lead emissions to the environment. TEL has not yet been banned for use in avgas, because no operationally safe alternative is currently available. However, FAA acknowledges that that all forms of lead are toxic if inhaled or ingested, and that lead can affect human health in several ways, including the nervous system, red blood cells, and the cardiovascular and immune systems.
“People that live or work near airports with a large number of piston-engine aircraft could be exposed to elevated levels of lead in the air, soil and water,” said Harry Pena, President of Zimmetry Environmental. “To protect workers and the public, Zimmetry’s industrial hygiene and environmental professionals offer testing and monitoring services for lead from avgas, lead-based paints and other sources in Puerto Rico and throughout the Caribbean.”
Zimmetry also recently sponsored an educational video about avgas and the environment that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/VGgyJ9wCeVo
To learn more about Zimmetry Environmental and their air quality, environmental, industrial hygiene, compliance and consulting services, please visit www.zimmetry.com, call (787) 995.0005 or email email@example.com.
About Zimmetry Environmental
Since 2002, Zimmetry Environmental has been providing environmental consulting services to building owners and managers, architects, engineers, EHS professionals, and Fortune 500 companies. The company is based in Puerto Rico and provides services across the Caribbean and Central America. The professionals at Zimmetry offer environmental compliance, indoor air quality, asbestos, lead-based paint, Phase I ESAs, and general environmental consulting services.