PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE EAGLE ROCK NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL
HEALTH & WELLBEING
Gasoline powered leaf blowers negatively impact air quality. The gas engines of leaf blowers emit hazardous levels of particulate matter, carbon monoxide and smog forming particles. They blow dust, pollen and dirt into the air, contributing to asthma and allergy problems.
Leaf blowers also create noise pollution. A leaf blower can create 70 decibels of noise at 50 feet away, affecting children’s naps, disrupting those working from home and scaring birds and wildlife.
CAL OSHA regulations allow only 20 minutes of total daily exposure to a noise level over 100 decibels, while most gardeners run their blowers at 109 decibels, for many hours a day.
ALTERNATIVES TO GASOLINE POWERED LEAF BLOWERS
Leaves can be allowed to decompose naturally beneath plants. Hardscape and pathways may be swept or cleaned with an electric blower as needed. If you use a gardening service, talk to your gardeners about these options, if you are a gardener talk to your clients about these options.
The most significant impacts from the use of gas powered leaf blowers and lawn equipment fall upon those who use them every day. Gardeners and maintenance workers who use this equipment regularly are the ones most likely to suffer long term consequences to their health and hearing.
HEALTHY PEOPLE, HEALTHY GARDENS
While cleaning off driveways and patios can keep things looking tidy, constantly removing leaves from planted areas degrades the soil and impacts plant health.
In natural ecosystems leaves, twigs and other organic debris break down on the surface of the soil over time. This process improves soil texture and water holding capacity. As leaves and small twigs break down they provide food to beneficial soil microbes. These microbes help plants to take up nutrients and fight off stress and disease.
Leaf litter on the surface of the soil also acts to prevent erosion and protect plant roots. The natural material covering the soil acts as a buffer, protecting roots from extremes of heat and cold as well as intense periods of wind and rain.
IT’S THE LAW
Los Angeles Municipal (LAMC) Section 112. 04 (c) bans the use of gas powered leaf blowers.
THE SOUTH COAST AIR QUALITY MANAGEMENT DISTRICT (AQMD) OFFERS INCENTIVES TO PURCHASE ELECTRIC LAWN & GARDEN EQUIPMENT
Click here a link to the AQMD web site: bit.ly/aqmd-lawn
DID YOU KNOW?
One two-stroke gas leaf blower can emit the same amount of non-methane hydrocarbons as two hundred and ninety-nine trucks
WANT TO KNOW MORE? JOIN THE ERNC SUSTAINABILITY COMMITTEE MORE INFO AT ERNC.LA