The Relationship Between Gasoline Lead and Blood Lead in the United States
Joel Schwartz and Hugh Pitcher
The relationship between gasoline lead and blood lead was examined using a large sample chosen to be representative of the U.S. population. A strong, highly significant relationship was found, indicating that gasoline lead may have accounted for over half of the lead in blood in the late 1970s. The relationship held controlling for socioeconomic status, food intake, alcohol consumption, smoking, and occupational status. Separate regressions for males, females, whites, blacks, urban, and less urban gave comparable results. A separate analysis of blood lead levels in inner-city black children in Chicago, Illinois gave an essentially identical regression coefficient. The relationship appears to be causal.
Gasoline; blood lead; air pollution.