July 10, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) introduced a bill to prohibit the use of lead ammunitions on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service lands. The Lead Endangers Animals Daily (LEAD) Act would help prevent lead poisoning in animals who come into contact with ammunitions, which typically contain lead that can leach into water or poison wildlife that feed on carcasses containing lead bullets. Previously, the Obama Administration had ordered phasing out the use of lead bullets on National Wildlife Refuges, but the Trump Administration reversed that decision.

 "Lead poisoning is a well-known health risk for humans, but it also threatens wildlife," Rep. Lieu said. "Birds like California condors and bald eagles scavenge on animal carcasses and are at risk of lead poisoning because of exposure to lead fragments from ammunition. Lead from spent bullets can also leach into water supplies and poison additional innocent animals. By banning lead ammunitions on the 95 million acres of land that U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages, we can reduce the exponential harm inflicted on animals from lead exposure. My bill is a common-sense solution that has support from sportsmen and conservationists alike. I look forward to working with my Congressional colleagues on efforts like this to reduce harm inflicted on our animal friends."

The LEAD Act is endorsed by:

Dan Ashe, President and CEO of the Association of Zoo and Aquariums

“As a life-long hunter and wildlife conservationist, I’ve always believed that the core of sportsmanship is a commitment to fair chase and to reducing needless suffering in animals. Science shows, unambiguously, that millions of birds and small mammals are killed, annually, because they consume the remains of game species shot with lead ammunition. Hunting with lead ammunition, based on what we know today, and given the fact that non-lead alternatives are readily available, is the opposite of sportsmanship. I wish that this legislation would not be needed, but it is, and I’m proud to support it.”

 Dr. Annie Harvilicz, president of the Animal Wellness Foundation

"For the health and safety of people and animals, lead has been taken out of gasoline, paint, and other products, and should also be taken out of hunting ammunition. If spent ammunition is left behind on national wildlife refuges, it will keep killing. So many veterinarians, wildlife advocates, and others are excited about Rep. Ted Lieu's leadership on this legislation."  

Cathy Liss, President of the Animal Welfare Institute

“We see story after story about bald eagles, a magnificent symbol of our nation, dying of lead poisoning after ingesting bullet fragments or contaminated carcasses. There is simply no doubt about the tragic and potentially lethal effects that this toxin has on humans and animals. It is irresponsible to litter the environment with lead bullets, especially when so many effective alternatives are on the market. We thank Congressman Lieu for introducing legislation to prevent the needless poisoning of wildlife.”