Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick, 66th Assembly District Manhattan, and Chair of the Committee on Environmental Conservation announced today the Assembly passage of legislation A.2084A, which would prohibit the use of lead ammunition when hunting on state land and land that contributes surface water to the New York City water supply.
Lead is a highly toxic metal that is known to cause extensive nervous system damage, loss of fertility, heart disease, damage to brain development, and death. According to the World Health Organization, there is no acceptable level of lead exposure that is considered safe. As the scientific community has become more aware of the serious dangers associated with its exposure, lead has been removed from many consumer products such as gasoline, paint, and water pipes. Yet lead remains the most common material in the manufacture of firearm ammunition. Due to its high malleability, undetectably small lead fragments are embedded up to 18 inches away from a wound channel in a hunted animal. This poses a great risk to both humans who eat meat harvested with lead ammunition as well as eagles and other scavengers who consume the leftover remains of field dressed hunted animals.
Assemblymember Glick said, “After our great success in helping Bald Eagle populations rebound, it is thrilling to spot these majestic birds in the wild. Yet the continued use of lead ammunition continues to poison these and other animals, and humans that consume hunted meat. In 1991 the Bush Sr. Administration enacted a federal ban on the use of lead ammunition for waterfowl hunting; it is far beyond time we take the next step to protect the people and wildlife of New York State with this measured yet impactful measure.”
Companion legislation, S.4976A is sponsored in the Senate by Senator Pete Harckham.