CONGRATULATIONS to Glendale’s Department of Public Works for the CERTIFICATION of eight of our parks and properties to Certified Green Zones!
That means, they will use electric and people-powered methods to care for eight public parks and city properties (City Hall Complex, Verdugo Adobe, Casa Adobe de San Rafael, Maryland Avenue Park, Heritage Garden, Wilson Mini Park, Doran Mini Park, and Harvard Mini Park), reducing smog producing emissions, noise, and very importantly, creating a much healthier environment for our maintenance staff. Kudos to our Public Works Department for moving in this direction.
The American Green Zone Alliance has been working with our Public Works grounds maintenance team on this all electric landscaping equipment transition for the past year. Mr. Dan Mabe of AGZA gave a short presentation at City Council regarding the program.
What did we lose by converting from internal combustion engines to clean electric technology for our grounds maintenance?
- 12 TONS OF CO2
- 712 LBS OF OZONE FORMING EXHAUST
- 5,000 LBS OF CARBON MONOXIDE
- 150 LBS OF PARTICULATE MATTER
- 40-70% LESS NOISE
Councilmember Paula Devine was inspired by a presentation on the AGZA program by Micheal Cacciotti, Mayor Pro Tem of the City of South Pasadena (South Pasadena was the first certified AGZA Green Zone® city in the nation), and asked if Glendale could partake in the program. About a year ago, Glendale started a pilot testing program with AGZA in eight of the city’s smaller parks/properties, and then with a big assist from the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s Commercial Electric Garden and Lawn Equipment rebate program, were able to acquire new battery powered equipment. The Department of Public Works plans to expand the program to the larger parks next. Council member Dan Brotman supports a park-wide policy, followed up by a city-wide policy in tandem with potential state wide measures (Assembly Bill 1346) that would prohibit the sale of gas powered “Small Off Road Engines” (SORE) in California by 2024.
Why is this important? In addition to the many health impacts from gas powered landscaping equipment to the workers who use them (including lung cancer, heart disease, strokes, asthma and other respiratory ailments from inhaling particulate matter), they present huge pollution and climate impact issues for the wider community.
“Today, operating the best-selling gas-powered commercial leaf blower for one hour emits air pollutants comparable to driving a 2017 Toyota Camry from Los Angeles to Denver. Smog-forming emissions from small engines will surpass those from passenger vehicles this year. We must look beyond transportation if we are to achieve the emissions reductions needed to fight climate change and improve air quality and health in our communities.” – Assemblyman Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park)
A reminder, the Los Angeles Metropolitan area has just received the dubious honor of having the nation’s worst air quality when it comes to ozone pollution. Changing from gas powered to electric powered landscaping equipment can make a big impact.
The SCAQMD also has both a residential lawn mower rebate program (receive up to $250 towards the purchase of a cordless, battery-powered lawn mower when you turn in your gas powered lawn mower) and a commercial program. The Commercial Electric Lawn and Garden Equipment Incentive & Exchange Program is available for commercial landscapers and gardeners operating within the South Coast AQMD’s region and provides up to 75% off commercial lawn and garden equipment. Please visit this SCAQMD’s website if you know a gardner you would like to tell about either program. The website has flyers (in several languages, including English and Spanish) about the programs you can print out and give to folks that may be interested.
Related Article: Read about South Pasadena Mayor Pro Tem Mr. Cacciotti’s forward thinking efforts to inform local landscapers about opportunities to go electric with SCAQMD’s rebate program: https://southpasadenan.com/mayor-pro-tem-now-pushing-independent-gardeners-to-go-green-cacciotti-continues-environmental-mission/