EPA Proposes Lead Dust Testing Requirement

The Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to start requiring lead dust testing in renovated homes built before 1978. This requirement, set to be proposed on April 20, 2010, settles a 2008 lawsuit from the Sierra Club and other public interest groups that want to bring awareness to the negative effects lead dust has on children’s health.  

Lead paint was deemed unfit for homes in 1978, but the rules regarding its ability to harm children during renovations hasn’t been a point pressed until recently. According to the Sierra Club, it only takes one-tenth of one gram of lead dust to contaminate a 2,000-square-foot home and harm a child.

Lead, when ingested by the unborn or children younger than six years old, can lead to brain damage and nervous system damage, learning disabilities and other complications. Lead dust that lingers after a home renovation is the most common way for children to contract lead poisoning.

The rules decided in the settlement of the lawsuit will be reviewed and cleared by the EPA by July 15, 2011. The rules include required testing conducted by a certified professional after renovations and certification for contractors renovating buildings with lead paint.

If you want any further information about lead poisoning contact the National Lead Information Center via phone at (800) 424-5323.

More about lead

Think lead is just a problem with paint? Think again–find out what home staples can also harbor lead and what to do about it.

Did you know that 35 percent of more than 1,200 American toys tested positive for lead?

Check out our guide to healthy, lead-free toys for your little ones.