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SCAQMD Provides Incentives to Buy Zero-Emission Commercial Electric Lawn and Garden Equipment

Post Date:01/31/2019 12:50 PM

The South Coast Air Quality Management District today announced that $2.5 million in incentive funds are available to help commercial gardeners and landscapers, local governments, school districts, colleges and non-profit organizations buy new zero-emission, battery-electric commercial-grade lawn and garden equipment and scrap and replace their old, polluting gasoline- or diesel-powered equipment.  Participants may receive up to 60 percent off the purchase price for new equipment.  This program is not available to individual residents who are not gardeners or landscapers. 

            “With these incentive funds, we are helping to put cleaner, quieter, more efficient and emissions-free lawn equipment into the hands of gardeners and landscapers throughout our region,” said Wayne Nastri, SCAQMD’s executive officer.  “Gas- and diesel-powered chainsaws, lawn mowers, leaf blowers and hedge trimmers produce hazardous emissions that expose operators and residents to increased cancer risks, air toxics, carbon monoxide and microscopic particles that can become lodged deep in the lungs.”

            Participants will receive significant discounts applied at point of purchase on approved equipment.  For example, a leaf blower with a backpack battery and a charger that retails for $1,400 can be purchased for only $560 plus tax, a 60 percent discount. 

Participants will be able to purchase qualifying equipment from ECHO, Husqvarna, Makita, Mean Green, Oregon and STIHL from authorized dealers in Riverside, Orange, Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties at a reduced price set by SCAQMD in exchange for an equivalent, operable piece of diesel- or gasoline-powered equipment.  Manufacturers will accept and scrap the old equipment.  Priority will be given to participants that are located in environmental justice or disadvantaged communities in the South Coast Basin.

             According to studies by the California Air Resources Board:

      • By 2020, smog-forming volatile organic compound emissions from lawn equipment engines are expected to exceed those from cars;
      • 42 percent of engines fail CARB’s evaporative emission test; and
      • Operators are exposed to carcinogens such as benzene and butadiene, therefore increasing their cancer risks.

“Zero-emission technology will help turn the tide against air pollution and improve the quality of life for people in the region,” said Nastri.  “We will partner with businesses and provide incentives to continue to put clean air products on the market and retire polluting and outdated equipment.”

            Please visit www.aqmd.gov/lawngarden to view eligible equipment and dealer locations.  There is no-pre-registration required to participate in this innovative program. 

This exchange program is funded through SCAQMD’s Air Quality Investment Program and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Targeted Air Shed Grant.

SCAQMD is the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.
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