Local News

Tuesday, Apr 12 2011 11:57 AM

Air district offers electric mowers

By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

The valley air district's popular electric lawn mower trade-in program is back with new funding and a simplified voucher request process.

Beginning this week, valley residents can replace their polluting, gas-powered mower with a clean, electric Neuton mower for $50 for a 14-inch blade model or $100 for the 19-inch mower, shipping included, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District said in a release.

"This is our most popular consumer program, and one that pays off in big clean-air dividends for everyone in the valley," Seyed Sadredin, the district's executive director, said in the release.

Local funding for the program was authorized by the district's governing board in combination with a state grant for residents of the San Joaquin Valley. The district also partnered with the Sierra Club and the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment in Kern County to provide additional vouchers for residents in the valley portion of Kern County.

New, regional phone numbers dedicated to Clean, Green Yard Machines will streamline and simplify the voucher request process, organizers promised.

Residents in Tulare County and the valley portion of Kern County can order by calling 392-5685

Vouchers must be requested by phone in advance and will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are exhausted. Limit one per household or three per business.

After receiving a voucher, applicants must turn in a working, gas-powered mower at an authorized recycler in their county. A list of recyclers is available at Valleyair.org.

Participants can then phone Neuton at a toll-free number and order their new, cordless, electric lawn mower, which will be delivered to their door.

Trading in a gas-powered mower for an electric mower is one way to reduce personal emissions and clean up the valley's air, air district officials say. Emissions from using a gas-powered mower for one hour are equivalent to driving 40 late-model cars for the same length of time.

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