Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a new law Saturday banning gas-powered lawn tools, according to Los Angeles Times.
The new law will be effective as early as 2024. It states that small-motor tools like chainsaws, leaf blowers and lawn mowers must be battery-operated. In addition, plug-in, gas-powered generators will be required to be zero-emission by 2028, the Los Angeles Times reported. (RELATED: Newsom Signs Bill Requiring Every Registered Voter Be Mailed A Ballot)
And one of the final bill actions: Newsom agrees to a California phaseout of gas-powered lawnmowers & leaf blowers, no doubt a law that will receive national attention. https://t.co/Skssy6JTip
— John Myers (@johnmyers) October 10, 2021
“This is the most impactful step our state can take to fight climate change,” Newsom said in a Sept. 23 press release announcing the imminent move to sign the bill. “For too many decades, we have allowed cars to pollute the air that our children and families breathe. Californians shouldn’t have to worry if our cars are giving our kids asthma. Our cars shouldn’t make wildfires worse – and create more days filled with smoky air. Cars shouldn’t melt glaciers or raise sea levels threatening our cherished beaches and coastlines.”
The law also applies to machinery with small off-road engines including weed trimmers and golf carts, which create as much pollution as light-duty passenger cars, according to the law, The Sacramento Bee reported.
Assemblyman Marc Berman wrote the bill in an effort to cut back on emissions and to increase the use of greener equipment, according to The Sacramento Bee.
“It’s amazing how people react when they learn how much this equipment pollutes, and how much smog-forming and climate-changing emissions that small off-road engine equipment creates,” Berman said, according to the Los Angeles Times. “This is a pretty modest approach to trying to limit the massive amounts of pollution that this equipment emits, not to mention the health impact on the workers who are using it constantly.”
Critics of the new bill, including Andrew Bray, vice president of government relations for the National Association of Landscape Professionals, said that zero-emission tools are more expensive and less effective compared to gas-powered tools, Los Angeles Times reported.