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Why do small airports still use fuel containing lead?

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9min 30sec
Private aircraft control tower Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport Broomfield 230906
Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Private aircraft and the control tower at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport in Broomfield, Sept. 6, 2023.

People living near Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport in Broomfield won a major victory this month. The facility announced it would shift to unleaded gasoline by 2027, three years ahead of a federal target date. But the U.S. banned leaded car fuel almost 30 years ago. That’s long after scientists proved it poisons kids. CPR climate and environment reporter Sam Brasch wanted to discover why leaded gas is still a problem for small airports. He spoke with freelance journalist Moe Clark, who's covered neighborhoods affected by lead pollution.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this segment indicated the fuel change would occur in 2024 in accordance with a federal deadline.