WASHINGTON (June 17, 2005) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Tire Industry Association are discussing the establishment of a program to educate tire dealers on the proper disposal of lead wheel weights.
“We need to tell them that lead weights should not be given to Boy Scouts and sportsmen,” said Becky MacDicken, TIA director of government affairs.
Used as sinkers in fishing and for other sporting purposes, lead weights can poison water and soil, the EPA has determined, and tire dealers fear that if lead weights are banned, they will be forced to use weights made from much more expensive materials.
The Ecology Center, a Berkeley, Calif.-based environmental group, petitioned the EPA in mid-May for a lead wheel weight ban. The agency has until mid-August to respond. The EPA is searching for ways to fund a joint EPA-TIA educational program, Ms. MacDicken said.