A CALL TO ACTION
Welcome to our EARTH SAVERS webpage. AADC is committed to supporting environmental awareness. Each month author Jody Brady gives us information and tips on how to be more friendly to the environment. Your comments and tips are welcome. Scroll down if you would like to comment. Comments are curated and may not appear immediately.
Ban the Blowers – Gas Powered Blowers Cause 4% of U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions
Some states and towns are considering banning gas-powered leaf blowers and lawn mowers – encouraging homeowners to adopt more sustainable landscaping practices. More than 100 local governments are enacting partial bans on gas-powered use. California passed a law requiring all small off-road engines used in the state to be zero-emissions by 2024 – meaning only electric lawn tools will be allowed.
Environmental benefits of all electrics are substantial. Using a gas-powered lawn mower for an hour creates as much climate pollution as driving 300 miles in an average car, according to the California Air Resources Board. And because leaf blowers typically use especially fuel-hungry two-stroke engines, running a gas leaf blower for an hour is equal to an 1,100-mile drive.
Gas mowers emit 16 times as much planet-warming carbon dioxide per acre as electric mowers and use an estimated 13.7 times as much energy as electric models. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, gas-burning lawn tools account for 4% of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions. They are also a major source of conventional air pollutants that increase risk of respiratory illnesses, including 17% of all volatile organic compound emissions and 12% of nitrogen oxide emissions.
Electric equipment is quieter, more pleasant and better for our ears. Gas blowers run from 80 to 90 decibels, versus 59 to 70 decibels for electric blowers.
It is estimated that the savings on gasoline would more than make up for the cost of switching to electric equipment. The Smart Energy Design Assistance Center calculates that in 600 hours of use and with gasoline at $4.50 per gallon, a gas mower will use $3,200 worth of gasoline, whereas using an electric mower for 600 hours at 12 cents per kilowatt hour will cost $108.
Some states are offering incentives to combat climate change by creating tax credits when purchasing electric lawn and snow equipment and by requiring the switch earlier on personal equipment than for professional equipment.
My personal choice is using a good old-fashioned rake. It gets you outside, clears your mind, lets you absorb vitamin D. Plus, you can enjoy nature and the neighbors without yelling over a loud leaf blower.
Some Helpful Links to Learn More:
Recommened Reading: Heather Cox Richardson
Read Letters From an American, posted by this excellent writer every day. She writes on a variety of political subjects, whatever is timely. Some of her articles are environmentally oriented, such as her April 21 article on Earth Day which includes history of its beginnings in 1970.
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