FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 9, 2020
Lyz Hoffman, Public Information Officer, (805) 961-8819
Voluntary Electric Landscape Equipment Program Launching November 16
Program offers up to $7,000 to landscaping businesses, schools, nonprofit organizations, and public agencies
SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. — Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) is excited to announce the second year of the Landscape Equipment Electrification Fund (LEEF) program. Total funding of $100,000 is available for vouchers covering up to 60 percent of the cost for eligible equipment, up to $7,000 per organization. The program is available to commercial landscape businesses and nonprofit organizations — as well as public agencies and public and private schools and universities that perform their own landscape maintenance. (Individual homeowners are not eligible to apply). The application window will run November 16 through January 15, 2021; vouchers will be awarded starting in late January.
Gasoline- and diesel-powered landscaping equipment is highly polluting and contributes to regional and neighborhood air quality impacts. Operating a best-selling commercial gas-powered leaf blower for one hour emits as much smog-forming pollution as driving a passenger car about 1,100 miles, or approximately the distance from Carpinteria to Seattle. The California Air Resources Board estimates that smog-forming emissions from small engines (a large portion of which are used in landscaping equipment) are expected to exceed those from passenger cars statewide in the early 2020s.
“The LEEF pilot program was hugely popular, and we heard from successful applicants that they enjoyed the features of the electric equipment – namely, that the devices are quiet, effective, and easy to use,” said Aeron Arlin Genet, APCD Director. “We encourage landscaping operations to consider this clean technology, which comes at a reduced cost under this program and provides ample air quality benefits.”