The Role of Physician Advocacy in Supporting Policy Change That Reduces Leaded Aviation Gasoline Emissions.
BACKGROUND: Leaded aviation gasoline (AvGas) accounts for 70%, or 935,082 pounds, of total lead emissions in the United States and has been repeatedly linked to elevated blood lead levels (BLLs) in those living in the vicinity of airports using AvGas. The well-established link between lead exposure and adverse health outcomes provided a platform ripe for environmental health advocates and pediatric health experts to assist a local environmental health organization in addressing lead waste from a local airport, Montgomery-Gibbs Executive Airport (MYF).
METHOD: We detail the steps we took, as a physician clean-air advocacy group. We provide a qualitative analysis of our efforts in addressing leaded air pollution through targeted and creative environmental health advocacy through three main avenues: government, public awareness, and academia.
OBJECTIVES: Our actions were taken to ensure the City of San Diego installed an unleaded fuel tank at MYF to reduce leaded aviation gasoline usage and subsequently lead air pollution in the surrounding area.
DISCUSSION: Ultimately, the identified objective of an unleaded fuel tank was added to the San Diego City budget and scheduled for construction. We hope our actions can serve as a framework to provide concrete steps for clinicians and other advocates to enact change in their communities.
Journal of community health
Humans; Child; United States; Gasoline; Lead; Aviation; Hydrocarbons; Policy; Vehicle Emissions; Air Pollutants
Advocacy; Environmental health; Leaded aviation gasoline; Pollution; Public health practice
Gilbertson R, Friedman E, Nguyen VT, Stahl S, Ireland R. The Role of Physician Advocacy in Supporting Policy Change That Reduces Leaded Aviation Gasoline Emissions. J Community Health. 2023;48(3):446-449. doi:10.1007/s10900-023-01186-9