A new California law (AB 1346) will require the state to adopt regulations regarding gas-powered tools, such as blowers and mowers, by July 1, 2022. It also bans their sale by the start of 2024, IF California’s Air Resource Board determines this is feasible.
An existing L.A. City ordinance (LAMC Section 112.04) bans the use of gas-powered leaf blowers within 500 feet of a residence at any time. Violation of the ban is $100. The LAPD has primary enforcement responsibility: 1-800-ASK-LAPD. Residents may also register complaints with the Street Services Investigation and Enforcement Division, Department of Public Works: 800-996-CITY.
Longtime resident Pepper Edmiston has been leading efforts to have the LAPD enforce the leaf-blower ordinance, given that these machines are still abundant, and gardeners and homeowners largely ignore the law. Edmiston sent the following to CTN:
DOES YOUR GARDENER STILL USE
A GAS-POWERED LEAF BLOWER?
IF SO, YOUR HOUSE IS A GAS STATION
& YOU NEED TO POST THIS SIGN:
WARNING: Breathing this air can expose you to chemicals including benzene, motor vehicle exhaust and carbon monoxide, which are known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.
* THIS IS NOT A JOKE. GAS BLOWERS HAVE BEEN OUTLAWED SINCE 1998.
* GOOD NEIGHBORS DON’T ALLOW THEIR GARDENERS TO FOUL THE AIR.
* THE POISONOUS EXHAUST FROM GAS BLOWERS LINGERS FOR DAYS ON OUTDOOR FURNITURE, ETC.
* DON’T BE SELFISH; DON’T BE INCONSIDERATE.
* THE LIFE YOU SPARE FROM ILLNESS MAY BE THAT OF SOMEONE YOU LOVE, OR EVEN YOURSELF.
CTN asked Edmiston, “What if everyone who allows their gardener to use a gas blower would give their gardener an electric blower or maybe just pay an additional $20 a month so that they simply use a rake or broom?”
Edmiston responded, “ALL blowers are bad. When we got the 1998 ban passed, we didn’t have the votes to ban electric & battery, so we just got the ban for gas/blowers.”
Then Edmiston said something really interesting. “We also held a race between gardeners with a blower and those with a rake. There was less than a five-minute difference. So, maybe $20/month would do the trick.”
If your gardener would accept $20 extra a month to put the blower away and use a rake, would you consider this extra expense? Not only would it be better for your health, but also for your gardener’s.
“Why people allow gardeners to poison our air is beyond me,” Edmiston said.