Monday, February 06, 2012

Feds Move to Ban Copper From Brake Pads


The U.S. government is taking some interesting steps in an effort to help out the environment. Both state and federal levels of government are getting behind the movement to ban copper from brake pads.

According to environmentalists, the copper in brake pads produces metal dust that makes its way into the water system, negatively affecting aquatic life. In 2010, California and Washington banned using copper in brake pads, and now Rhode Island, New York and Oregon are following suit with their own bills.

So you may be asking yourself, “How does the copper from my brake pads end up in the water?” Every time you use your brakes, small bits of copper and other metals are worn off and settle on the road. These metals then wash into streams and rivers, and when you think about all the cars on the road, the amount of metal making its way into the water system begins to add up quickly. In fact, brake pads make up to half of the copper that’s found in water in urban areas.

Already manufacturers have started to back this environmental concern. The Brake Pad Partnership joins together the Brake Manufacturers Council, the Environmental Protection Agency, Ford Motor Company, General Motors and various state water agencies in order to combat the problem.