Dear Indian Voices

The Montgomery-Gibbs Environmental Coalition would like to bring to your attention to better inform the public about the toxic lead air pollution that is generated by general aviation airports not only all over San Diego County, but also nationwide. 

Piston-engine aircraft operating on leaded aviation gasoline are the largest remaining aggregate source of lead emissions to air in the U.S. according to the EPA. Toxic leaded aviation fuel is only used in propeller planes (general aviation planes) not jet planes.

General aviation planes in California drop nearly 50 tons of toxic lead annually resulting from the use of leaded avgas  

None of the 13 San Diego City or County general aviation airports offer unleaded UL94 fuel for sale alongside toxic leaded avgas that only a minority of general aviation planes absolutely need to use for safety 

Montgomery-Gibbs Executive Airport (MYF) in the city of San Diego alone generates more than a ton of lead annually, due to the exclusive sale of leaded avgas. (Source - Airport Master Plan) 

 It (MYF) is #15 of the top 100 lead producing airports in the nation. (see attached) and nearly 60% of the people living in the mile radius around the airport are minorities, and nearly 30% are low income.  The lead figures and census data in the spreadsheet are from the EPA's 2017 NEI data for lead emissions at airports and EPA’s tool EJSCREEN (which uses Census Bureau data) for the demographic analysis.  Please be aware that EPA lead figures differ from that of the Montgomery-Gibs Executive Airport Master Plan because different computing methods were used.

Gillespie Field in El Cajon, Mc Clellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, and the Ramona Airport are also listed in the top 100 lead producing airports in the U.S.  

The majority of piston driven planes can use Swift Fuels unleaded UL94 aviation fuel, but a minority need to continue to use leaded fuel for safety, so the solution would be to offer both leaded and unleaded.  But although the city of San Diego officials say they are working on convincing their airport tenants'(FBOs) to offer unleaded, it appears nothing is moving forward.  If that does not come to fruition very soon, then the City of San Diego itself needs to step up to the plate and become its own fuel vendor to offer unleaded to significantly decrease the toxic lead air pollution that is generated by the airport. 

Hopefully your readers can help by calling the San Diego Mayor's office and demanding that unleaded fuel be offered -now!  And also demand the same of the County Board of Supervisors that run county airports.

Montgomery-Gibbs Environmental Coalition is also involved in a national effort to reduce the toxic lead air pollution generated by general aviation planes. Here is a press release explaining more about that.