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Ammunition Lead Ban — Should the EPA Do It? [POLL]

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In June of this year, environmentalists approached Federal courts demanding the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency overstep its authority and regulate lead ammunition. Certain environmental groups wanted the EPA to ban lead ammunition under the Toxic Substance Control Act. Some of those environmental groups included the non-profit Trumpeter Swan Society and the Center for Biological Diversity.

The EPA denied the groups petition to ban lead in ammunition, saying regulating ammunition was beyond their authority. So many anti-hunting groups are now suing the EPA to force a ban on traditional ammunition made with lead components that would devastate hunting and shooting sports participation, drive up ammunition prices by almost 200 percent on average and dry up conservation funding.

The Center of Biological Diversity has this to say about lead:

Lead is an extremely toxic element that we’ve sensibly removed from water pipes, gasoline, paint and other sources dangerous to people,” reports the non-profit Center for Biological Diversity (CBD). “Yet toxic lead is still entering the food chain through widespread use of lead hunting ammunition and fishing tackle, poisoning wildlife and even threatening human health.”

 

Last week, the Senate postponed voting on the Sportsmen’s Act until now. The Sportsmen Act ensures that lead can continue to be used in ammunition.

Anti-hunting groups led by the Center for Biological Diversity are suing the EPA to force a ban on traditional ammunition made with lead components that would devastate hunting and shooting sports participation, drive up ammunition prices by almost 200 percent on average and dry up conservation funding.

No less than 46 of the nation’s leading sportsmen and conservation groups including the NRA, Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, Ducks Unlimited, American Sportfishing Association, the International Game Fish Association, the Center for Coastal Conservation, and the Boone and Crockett Club are championing the Bill. This bipartisan legislation is strongly supported by the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

According to The National Shooting Sports Foundation, states that passing this bill will:

“Promote, protect, and preserve our nation’s hunting, shooting, and conservation heritage for generations to come.”

Here are some of the arguments for keeping lead in ammunition from the National Shooting Sports Foundation:

  • There is no scientific evidence that the use of traditional ammunition is having an adverse impact on wildlife populations.
  • Wildlife management is the proper jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the 50 state wildlife agencies.
  • A 2008 study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on blood lead levels of North Dakota hunters confirmed that consuming game harvested with traditional ammunition does not pose a human health risk.
  • A ban on traditional ammunition would have a negative impact on wildlife conservation. The federal excise tax that manufacturers pay on the sale of the ammunition (11 percent) is a primary source of wildlife conservation funding. The bald eagle’s recovery, considered to be a great conservation success story, was made possible and funded by hunters using traditional ammunition – the very ammunition organizations like the CBD are now demonizing.
  • Recent statistics from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service show that from 1981 to 2006 the number of breeding pairs of bald eagles in the United States increased 724 percent. And much like the bald eagle, raptor populations throughout the United States are soaring.

I know we have quite a few sportsmen and women in East Texas, me included, who must have a point of view on this hot topic, so what do you guys say? Is this just a ploy to take away ammo, because certain groups can’t get any where trying to take guns away? Or is the a legitimate concern for our environment? Let us know your vote!

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