OLYMPIA – Washington continues to lead the country with efforts to keep toxic copper particles out of rivers and streams with today’s approval of HB 1738 by the House of Representatives.

The bill is sponsored by first-year lawmaker Rep. Beth Doglio (D-Olympia) and is her first bill to win approval from the House.

doglio “Washington has been on the forefront ensuring our rivers and streams remain free of toxic materials,“ said Doglio. “This bill is another step in the right direction toward preserving our state’s iconic salmon habitat.”

Vehicle brake pads contain friction materials that help the vehicle stop when the brakes are applied. Tiny particles from friction materials are left on roadways as brake pads wear out over time. These particles often end up in streams and rivers through natural rain runoff. Copper is extremely toxic to salmon.

In 2010, the Legislature approved a bill that requires brake manufacturers to start a process of phasing out copper from brake pads. Since then, manufacturers have agreed to this phase-out policy on a national level.

HB 1738 completes that phase-out process and harmonizes state law with a national memorandum of understanding between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and several stakeholders limiting brake pad friction material to 0.5% by 2025.

HB 1738 will now go to the Senate for consideration.


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