Ban of Leaded Gasoline : The Next Step for Greener World


On July 2021, the last leaded gasoline fuel ended its sale, which followed the announcement by the United Nations, UN, from Nairobi, the banning of leaded gasoline fuel worldwide.

It has been 19 years since the U.N. The Environment Program has been trying to eliminate leaded gasoline around the globe and finally the end has come.

What is Leaded Gasoline?

Tetraethyl Leaded Gasoline

The leaded gasoline emerged about 100 years ago, as a fuel that allowed better performance of motor vehicles. However, introduction of this fuel caused health problems for many, especially children. Tetraethyllead found in the fuels causes damage to the environment as it can contaminate the soil, water and air. The contamination leads to health problems especially for children as it can cause lower IQ rates, heart disease, cancer and organ failure.

History of Leaded Gasoline

Leaded gasoline started its production in 1921 to ensure less damage to the engines. While the safety of leaded gasoline was unproved, it was considered safe by the people who invented it as leaded gasoline was considered necessary for advancement of human civilization, to motor vehicles.

However, in the early 1970 the dangers of leaded gasoline surfaced, as people started to have the health issues caused by lead in human health system.

With the devastating health results, Japan in the 1980s followed by Austria, Canada, Slovakia, Denmark, and Sweden started banning leaded fuels. It took longer for the United States and Germany to ban leaded fuel, in 1996.

Why is Banning Leaded Gasoline Good for Us?

According to the UN, the banning of leaded gasoline is estimated to prevent more than 1.2 million premature deaths per year, increasing IQ points among children and decreasing crime rates. Moreover, due to the decrease of such health problems as well as crimes, the economy would save up to USD 2.45 trillion.

Different Types of Gas

different types of gasoline
Unlike the leaded fuels, there are many other types of fuels with cheaper investment that do not contain harmful chemicals. Here’s some of the alternative fuels.

  • Petroleum diesel
  • also known as fossil diesel, most commonly used in vehicles

  • Synthetic diesel
  • low carbon fuel produced from any carbonaceous material not limited to biomass, biogas, natural gas and coal

  • Biodiesel
  • renewable fuel derived from vegetable oil, animal fats and recycled restaurant grease

  • Dimethyl ether (DME)
  • non toxic renewable fuel that boasts a high performance value and discreet combustion.

Further Considerations

While the biggest threat of lead infused substances is banned, there are many other products that contain lead such as paints, batteries and sometimes in our cosmetics. It is also equally important to ensure that more of these harmful substances are banned from our society. Moreover, moving towards a greener and more safe environment by making sure we reduce the usage of compounds and chemicals such as greenhouse gases is also another crucial step we have to take to leave our planet for the future generations.

If you are interested in positive and sustainable latest news around the world, check out our new article on Irish Football Association Announced Equal Pay for Women’s Teams and Google’s New Sustainability and Eco Certification for Hotel Listing.

Author: Thiri Zaw Yazawa
Member of Ethical Choice
Started my ethical journey with knowing the truth about pet shops and cafes. Enthusiastic to find interesting ethical products and ideas around the world. Always challenging myself to start small for bigger changes every day because there is no planet B.