To cut down on pollution created by gasoline-powered lawn and garden equipment, the Pima County Department of Environmental Quality, in partnership with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, has created the “Cut Down Pollution” program.
“Our region exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s health standard for ground-level ozone on some days in recent years and small gas-powered motors, like those used in this type of equipment, contribute to the creation of ozone and other air pollutants,” says Beth Gorman, senior program manager at PDEQ. “The more gas-powered equipment that is switched over to cleaner, quieter, and less messy electric or battery-powered equipment, the healthier our air will be.”
Ozone and particulate matter caused by gasoline-powered lawn equipment can contribute to health issues such as strokes, heart attacks, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
The Cut Down Pollution program provides vouchers to Pima County residents and businesses that turn in pre-approved gas-powered lawnmowers and other landscaping equipment for recycling. In exchange for a gas mower, a resident will receive a $150 voucher toward the purchase of a zero-emitting electric or battery-operated lawnmower. For other pre-approved gas-powered gardening equipment such as leaf blowers, string trimmers, chain saws, and edgers, residents will receive $50 vouchers toward the purchase of electric or manual landscaping equipment. The vouchers can be redeemed at Home Depot stores in Pima County. There is a limit to the number of pieces residential participants can turn in.
For commercial gas-powered lawn mowers used in landscaping business, the voucher will be worth $200. Commercial users will receive $50 toward the purchase of electric or manual landscaping equipment for retiring other pre-approved gas-powered equipment. Due to the hours per day of use, commercial users will be allowed to turn in more pieces than residential participants.
All equipment must be pre-approved online prior to being turned in at a drop-off location. Collection sites will be provided when an application is approved. Vouchers will be provided electronically after verification by PDEQ staff.
For more information about the “Cut Down Pollution” program visit www.bit.ly/cutdownpollution or call 273-9898.