I wonder if the inventors of leaded gas thought "well, it will get burned up during combustion and just disappear"-- it's an element, it's not going anywhere.
And it's STILL in use in jets and race cars? Jeez. Well, one more reason for me not to go to a NASCAR event.
They may not have had the imagination to envision the scale of the resulting problem; but the producers of organolead anti-knock compounds had no reason to be cheerful about its safety. The good Mr. Midgley had a number of workers die during his R&D, and got a pretty stiff hit of lead poisoning himself.
Freon, he arguably has clean hands on, since he died decades before its ozone depleting effects became known. Lead? He just didn't give a fuck, apparently.
There was also an abundance of lead paint which, before regulations on remediation began, was probably just strewn all over the ground when buildings were razed. Or who knows where fill was brought in from, etc.?
♥ effects of pollution don't vanish just because the pollution ends.♥
If you live in an urban area, you might want to avoid being a locavore.
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