California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law on Saturday that will phase out the sale of gas-powered leaf blowers, lawn mowers and other small off-road engines by as soon as 2024.
Assembly Bill 1346 directs the California Air Resources Board to phase out the sale of small off-road engines by 2024 or as soon as feasible, whichever comes later. The new law also directs the board to identify and make available, where feasible, funding for commercial rebates to go toward the purchase of electric equipment.
“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,” said Assemblyman Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park), author of the legislation. “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.”
“Gov. Newsom signing (this law) really sets a strong course to not only his commitment to transitioning to zero emissions but also to cleaner air and healthier lungs,” said Will Barrett, director of clean air advocacy for the American Lung Association in California.
The law Newsom signed also orders regulators to offer rebates for people to change out their equipment, a move aimed at landscaping businesses that use these machines more often. The state budget, approved earlier this year, includes $30 million to pay for this effort.