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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Lawn & Garden Equipment Emission Reduction Program

To improve air quality and reduce pollution created by gasoline-powered lawn and garden equipment, the Pima County Department of Environmental Quality (PDEQ), in partnership with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, is launching the “Cut Down Pollution” Program. This voluntary lawn and garden equipment replacement program recently opened to the public, and will continue throughout 2020 as funding remains available. If successful, the program will remove tons of air pollution from the air we all breathe.
   
“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. Particulate matter and ozone caused by gasoline-powered equipment can contribute to adverse health effects including heart attacks, stroke, 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 retiring higher polluting gas mowers, a resident will receive a $150 voucher toward the purchase of a zero-emitting electric or battery-operated lawnmower. For gas-powered equipment such as leaf blowers, string trimmers, chainsaws, edgers and the like, residents will receive $50 vouchers. The vouchers can be redeemed at Home Depot stores in Pima County. Equipment must be approved by PDEQ prior to trade-in, and there is a limit to the number of pieces that can be turned in by residential participants.
   
For those in the landscaping business, a commercial gas-powered lawnmower will earn a voucher worth $200 toward the purchase of an electric or battery-powered lawnmower, and other small landscaping equipment will earn a $50 voucher. Because of the potential to reduce significantly more air pollution due to the number of hours per day of use, commercial users will be allowed to turn in more pieces of equipment than residential participants.

For more information, call 520-273-9898 or visit Pima.gov/deq.
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