I'll be real brief, because of time, but feel free to contact me later (email@example.com). There is big conceren (somewhat well-founded but a bit overblown) about lead form electronics products leaching into the environment when they are landfilled at the end of their life. It's a hot topic these days, and of some merit although there are probably more important issues. Sadly, legislators have fixated on this one because it's an easy one to understand.
There are several good alternatives in development which will be practical soon, but none are quite as versatile as the current time-tested tin-lead technologies. For example, Nortel has developed a copper-tin system that works well for many applications. The only drawbacks is that it has a slightly higher operating temperature and requires an inert nitrogen shield. I can fill you in on a couple of the others at a later time if you wish.