Federal Appellate Court Rules EPA Cannot Regulate Content of Ammunition

Dismisses Anti-hunting Groups’ Lawsuit Seeking to Ban Traditional Ammunition.

Lead Ammo Ammunition
Lead Ammo Ammunition

National Shooting Sports Foundation
National Shooting Sports Foundation

NEWTOWN, Conn –-(Ammoland.com)- The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia today upheld the dismissal of the latest lawsuit brought by anti-hunting groups petitioning the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue regulations banning traditional ammunition with lead components.

The refusal by the EPA to consider the petition was challenged by the anti-hunting petitioners in federal court in 2013.

Traditional ammunition represents 95 percent of the U.S. market and is the staple ammunition for target shooters, hunters and law enforcement, with more than 14 billion rounds sold annually.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the trade association for the firearms and ammunition industry, joined the lawsuit on the side of the EPA to ensure that interests of industry and hunters were properly represented.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the EPA had properly dismissed the petition filed under the Toxic Substances Control Act. The petitioners appealed that ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals, which heard the case in late October.

EPA has consistently denied repeated attempts by anti-hunting groups led by the extremist Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) to have the agency ban traditional ammunition, and the court had dismissed an earlier case brought by CBD seeking the same relief. The latest suit simply added more parties.

“This latest iteration of a frivolous lawsuit is essentially the same as those dismissed earlier and equally without merit,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “We are pleased the Court of Appeals considered the legal merits in case and has now ruled that Congress has not given the EPA the authority to regulate ammunition, putting an end to efforts by anti-hunting zealots to end America’s hunting heritage.”

CBD’s serial petitioning of EPA and its repeated lawsuits are intended to begin shutting down hunting and the shooting sports in America by banning the ammunition that millions of hunters and target shooters choose to use safely and responsibly.

“There is quite simply no sound science that shows the use of traditional ammunition has harmed wildlife populations or that it presents a health risk to humans who consume game taken with such ammunition,” said Keane. “Banning traditional ammunition would cost tens of thousands of jobs in America and destroy wildlife conservation that is funded in part by an 11 percent excise tax on the sale of ammunition. The protection and management of wildlife is properly handled by the professional biologists in the state fish and game agencies, as it has been for over a hundred years.”

In addition to NSSF, the National Rifle Association, Safari Club International and the Association of Battery Recyclers intervened in the case.

Organizations that joined CBD in its lawsuit were the Cascades Raptor Center of Oregon, the Loon Lake Loon Association of Washington, Preserve Our Wildlife of Florida, Tennessee Ornithological Society, Trumpeter Swan Society and Western Nebraska Resources Council.

About NSSFThe National Shooting Sports Foundation is the trade association for the firearms industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of more than 6,000 manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations and publishers. For more information, log on to www.nssf.org.

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There are already laws in place preventng wildfires from shooting steel core ammunition. Lead is the only other least toxic alternative. I can see how lazy skeet shooters damage forests and wildlife by blasting several tons per year of tiny lead pellets miles away from their intended target. Maybe changing birdshot to something other than lead would be an ok idea, but im sure this is not what the environmentalists are after.

Uncle fester

Hey California how’s that sanctuary city crap working out for you?? Illegal aliens? We don’t need no STINKIN badges to carry!! I suggest the last American to leave California take the colors.


If anti-hunters are so concerned about wild life, why dont they use the money for court costs for the wild life instead, for instance, replanting the food supply in burned out areas. or donate to D.U and build swamp land for the ducks and geese.

Mercury man

Its ok you can do what we do and every time a CFL light breaks we take all the mercury and drill out the lead in our bullets and replace them with this “perfectly acceptable” lightbulb contents according to the EPA and administration. Makes for one hell of a harder hitting load :o)


This is backdoor gun control. Bullets made from metals other than lead will be ARMOR-PIERCING!

Mike Lee

Thank goodness the people out there on the East Coast got some help. We have the same problem here in California, the state banned any ammunition with lead. Now there is no more using lead shot, or lead casted bullets. This state is Crazy. They won’t be happy until all firearms have been outlawed!!! Senator DeLeon and our Attorney General Kamala Harris do not care how they violate our Constitutional rights. They just say this California and we will do what ever we want. You know it’s funny I get tons of e-mail from organizations like NAGR, Gun Owners of… Read more »


California needs to break off and float out into the abyss…


I would not live in California, if i did i would move for sure.


If it is not the EPA, it must belong to the BATF. So my friends, the fight is not over. It will be a fight with the BATF by these same groups. So, I would bet.

mary kitchen

What about California’s banned on lead ammunition.? Does this make the banned in California unconditional? I sure hope d o and hope someone does something about the banned in California.

Ron Crim

So, armed with this information, can the NSSF or some other pro gun authority file against the State of California to repeal the no lead in ammunition ban? Having proven that the technology used to determine that lead in ammunition is harming wildlife is totally flawed and mostly BOGUS, can the people of the state, using federal court findings cause the legislative branch to nullify the California no lead law?


Now if only the failed Socialist State of California would abide by this decision in regards to banning lead ammunition.

don holmes

It’s illegal for congress to give any agency the power to write laws. especially gun laws.

James Collins Sr.

They don’t like the ideal of the new types of Ammo that is coming out.Thus giving shooters more variety of choice for home defense.They hate it when science proves that wrong.

Stu Stirckler

If they can’t steal our firearms, they will *try* to regulate the ammunition for them.


But lawyers in the ‘Administration’ will keep trying!

ronald mcdaniel

First of all I want to thank everyone for fighting so hard for our 2nd amendment and I hope everyone will keep fighting because I know those butt holes out there are going to keep fighting trying to take our firearms !!!! Thank You All & God Bless You All !!!!!!!

John Carr

I wonder how much money the anti-gunners wasted on this one?


Not enough. They need to go flat broke.


With all the free flowing Federal Grant money floating around from tax dollars the probably used our money to put this on the court docket.


Bloomberg and his ilk have extremely deep pockets. While a victory celebration is in order, we cannot allow our resolve to falter. Those who oppose our individual rights are not called “progressives” for nothing. They are constantly on the move.

Gregory Romeu

“They spent”? They are probably using OUR tax dollars to pay for all their whining and agenda mongering.