Why not require permits for gas-powered leaf blowers? 

April 13, 2024

Last week, gas-powered leaf blowers began their seasonal assault on tranquility in Concord. We have a pending ban on gas blowers beginning in 2028, but we need interim measures to hasten the transition to electric blowers.  

In the meantime, why not require a permit to use a gas-powered blower in Concord? The fee for such a permit would help balance the cost tradeoff between gas and electric blowers, encouraging earlier adoption of the latter, and it could be increased as the ban approaches. The number of such permits could also be reduced over time. The permit fees, and any fines for failing to get them, could cover any enforcement costs until the ban takes effect. 

Concord requires permits and licenses for many things, even dogs. Why not gas blowers? We need to internalize the social and environmental costs of using gas blowers in decisions about using them. 

Thomas Neff 

Aurora Lane