Routine monitoring of lead in air is no longer undertaken in South East Queensland due to the low ambient concentrations following removal of lead in petrol. Lead monitoring results from Mount Isa and Townsville show that annual average lead concentrations are below the National Environmental Protection (Ambient Air Quality) Measure air quality standard of 0.50µg/m3.
Lead concentrations in Queensland do not exceed the National Environmental Protection (Ambient Air Quality) Measure air quality standard.
Lead levels are monitored in 2 areas:
- Mount Isa where the mining and smelting of mineral ores takes place
- Townsville where mineral concentrates are exported and imported through the Port of Townsville.
Improved emissions control actions are seeing lead concentrations in these areas further fall.
A dramatic drop-off in lead levels following the complete phase-out of leaded petrol in 2002 saw routine monitoring of lead in South East Queensland cease in December 2013.
Relevant Sustainable Development Goals’ targets
Trends in annual average lead concentrations by monitoring site for 1980–2019.