SANTA MONICA—Santa Monica’s Office of Sustainability and the Environment updated its website on Friday, October 29, to reflect its renewed commitment to enforcing the city’s leaf blower ban, which was originally put in place in 1991. The city contends that leaf blowers are a health hazard due to their use of combustion engines, which contribute to poor air quality and other concerns for landscape workers and city residents.
According to the law, no leaf blower of any kind can be used within city limits, regardless of what type of power source it uses. According to a flyer available on the website, the city is encouraging the use of manual tools, such as brooms and rakes. Infractions to the law will result in fines to responsible parties.
The website gives information regarding the environmental impact of leaf blowers. The site explains that a single gas-powered leaf blower emits 500 times the level of hydrocarbons as a modern automobile. Additionally, leaf blowers often send harmful chemicals, such as pesticides and herbicides, into the air and may contribute to hearing loss and eye damage.
The city has provided many ways to report violations, including a phone hotline, an e-mail address and with GoRequest, an iPhone application.
For more information, please visit Santa Monica’s Office of Sustainability and Environment at smgov.net/departments/ose/.