UK REACH announces it is considering ban on lead ammo

Lead ammunition could be phased out under government plans to help protect wildlife and nature

Lead ammunition could be phased out under government plans to help protect wildlife and nature Credit: Bob_Eastman/Getty - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

UK REACH - the UK’s new chemical regulation system - announces it is considering a ban on lead ammunition & launches 2-year consultation

Yesterday, on March 23, the Environment Minister, Rebecca Pow, announced the Government is “considering a ban of lead ammunition to protect wildlife and nature as part of new plans under UK REACH”. The Environment Agency, together with the Health and Safety Executive, will now start a two-year process to review the evidence, conduct a public consultation and propose options for restrictions.

[UK REACH is the UK’s new chemical regulation regukation system, independent of the EU]

Responding to yesterday’s UK REACH announcement regarding the consideration of further restrictions on all lead ammunition, Ian Bell, BASC CEO, said:

“The UK’s leading shooting organisations are already engaged in a voluntary five-year transition away from lead shot for live quarry shooting. Encouraging progress has already been made, with manufacturers working hard to bring new products to market to ensure shooting is sustainable.

“The UK already has legislation in place banning the use of lead shot over wetlands and for the shooting of wildfowl. Game dealers have made significant progress in minimising the amount of lead contained in game sold to the public. Cartridge companies are developing new products but producing the amount of non-lead ammunition required for the UK with the current production facilities is a significant challenge.

“The UK REACH consultation encompasses all lead ammunition and reaches well beyond the voluntary transition. They must avoid the failure of the EU REACH process which failed to listen to the shooting, land management, conservation and farming communities and produced unreasonable and unworkable regulations.

Continued engagement with the shooting organisations is critical to ensure any proposals are proportionate, feasible and enforceable while recognising the significant investment and time required to deliver proportionate and effective change.”