2 Vancouver councillors submit separate, near-identical motions to tackle landscape equipment noise

Jun 2 2021, 4:17 pm

Two Vancouver city councillors have submitted separate, near-identical motions to try and tackle noise issues created by landscaping equipment.

The motions – one from Councillor Sarah Kirby-Yung, and the other from Councillor Adriane Carr – each look to work towards “Emission-Free” landscaping equipment and practices in Vancouver.

“The use of landscaping equipment powered by gasoline two-stroke engines, including leaf-blowers, hedge trimmers, line trimmers, chain saws and pole saws, contributes significantly to air pollution, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and noise pollution in the City of Vancouver,” Carr’s motion reads.

“The negative noise impacts from gasoline powered landscape maintenance equipment have been significantly heightened for residents with so many people working from home and spending considerably more time at home,” states Kirby-Yung.

“Gallon for gallon… the small gasoline engines found in lawn mowers, leaf blowers, and other power equipment pollute at a higher rate than other equipment and vehicles,” states Carr.

“Feedback received from the public… frequently cites the issue of noise and emissions from gasoline-powered landscape maintenance equipment, such as lawn mowers, trimmers, chain saws, and especially leaf blowers,” Kirby-Yung’s motion reads.

“Equipment powered by two-stroke engines produce levels of noise varying from 75 to 110 decibels. Sounds above 85 decibels are deemed harmful by the Government of B.C. Furthermore, two-stroke engines often produce noise in the low-frequency range which travel further and penetrate deeper than noise at higher frequency, hence creating widerspread neighborhood disturbance and greater health hazards to equipment users,” states Carr.

“Noise is part of urban life, but too much noise is disruptive and harmful to wellbeing,” Kirby-Yung’s motion reads.

Both motions will be brought forward at the June 8 council meeting.

“Be it resolved that City Council, in order to provide a helpful forward-looking signal to the public, landscaping companies and other related businesses, affirm the goal of pursuing emissions-free landscaping equipment in the City of Vancouver by 2025,” Carr’s motion reads.

“Therefore be it resolved that Vancouver City Council direct staff to report back with recommendations to meet the goal to phase out and transition personal and commercial use of gasoline-powered landscape maintenance equipment in the City of Vancouver by 2025,” states Carr.

So there you have it. Now that the City of Vancouver has seemingly solved all of its other pressing issues, things may just get a little quieter for everyone – four years from now, that is.

Eric ZimmerEric Zimmer

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