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OPEI weighs in on California’s proposed emissions regulations

February 13, 2020 -  By
Gas pump (Photo: phive2015/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images)

Photo: phive2015/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

State air regulators in California are proposing long-term plans to phase out gas-powered lawn care and landscaping equipment such as leaf blowers and lawn mowers.

“For all intents and purposes, California wants to drive the internal combustion engine out of the state and move to the implementation of zero-emissions products, so switching to battery, electric,” says Kris Kiser, president and CEO of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI). “We believe they’ll begin regulating in 2020 new emissions criteria that over the next decade will drive internal combustion engines from the state.”

While the state may eventually ban the sale of gas-powered products, municipalities may take it a step further and ban the use of those as well.
In fact, several Bay Area cities have already banned gas-powered blowers, and others restrict the use of them during certain times of the day or up to a certain noise level.

“(Landscape professionals) have to be mindful of the direction that the state and municipalities are signaling,” Kiser says. “OPEI is working with the state on implementation measures. The goal for us is to make it less painful for any user.”

Kiser adds that as the measures begin to take hold, he expects the battery-powered segment to respond.

“Where there’s a marketplace, product will emerge,” he says. “We have seen significant product emergences already. What you see at GIE+EXPO today compared to five years ago is dramatic.”

Sarah Webb

About the Author:

Sarah Webb is Landscape Management's associate editor. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Wittenberg University, where she studied journalism and Spanish. Prior to her role at LM, Sarah was an intern for Cleveland Magazine and a writing tutor.

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