So how do you safely throw lead came away?
First of all, never throw it away in the trash like common garbage. Lead is considered a heavy metal. Lead, at certain exposure levels, is a poisonous substance to animals (that includes humans). It damages the nervous system and causes brain disorders. Excessive lead also causes blood disorders in mammals. Like the element mercury, another heavy metal, lead is a neurotoxin that accumulates both in soft tissues and the bones. Lead poisoning has been documented in ancient Rome, ancient Greece, and ancient China.
Typically, when lead came is thrown away in a local landfill, there is a great potential of causing a certain degree of lead poison leaching from the landfill and into the nearby ground and subsequently the groundwater and eventually the water supply.
The best way to get rid of unwanted lead came is to take it to a local recycle center that handles hazardous waste. Some states have hazardous waste centers where lead is accepted. Another way of disposing of lead came is to send it back to a lead came manufacturer so that they can recycle the lead back into new lead came! Which ever way you decide to use, it is our responsibility as glass artists to keep our craft from contaminating our environment!