EPA Announces Stricter Dust-Lead Clearance Standards

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maintains a dust-lead clearance standard for floors and window sills to limit harmful lead exposure to children and prevent longterm mental and physical damage. For the first time in nearly twenty years, the EPA is taking steps toward more protective standards by introducing more strict clearance standard regulations.

“EPA’s updating its standards for lead dust on floors and windowsills in pre-1978 homes and child-occupied facilities is an important advance,” said Secretary Carson. “We will use this new rule in updating the lead safety requirements for the pre-1978 housing we assist.”

As contractors learn through the Lead Renovator Training, there is no safe amount of lead. Modern science has shown that exposure to lead, even at levels lower than the standards set in 2001, can cause detrimental and irreversible adverse health effects.

To protect children’s health and to continue making progress on this important issue, EPA is lowering the dust-lead hazard standards from 40 µg/ft2 to 10 µg/ft2 on floors and from 250 µg/ft2 to 100 µg/ft2 on window sills. The revised, more protective standards lower the level of lead in dust that may warrant measures to reduce risks.

The standards in the new rule take effect 180 days after the date of publication in the Federal Register, on January 6, 2020.

Read the full press release here.