An End to Gas Leaf Blowers in Santa Cruz

“Why did we tolerate these things for so long?”

cartoonLet’s face it, no one has ever liked the noise and fumes of leaf blowers, but tolerance for gas-powered leaf blowers is at an all-time low. It’s easy to see why–many more properties are being maintained by landscaping companies, most of those companies still use gas leaf blowers, and since so much work and living happens at home these days, there is no escaping them. Battery-powered leaf blowers are now as capable as gas ones for most purposes, so the continued polluting and disruption of our neighborhoods with gas-powered leaf blowers is not just unhealthy and obnoxious, it’s sensless as well.

Our City, Our Choice: Noisy and Toxic or Peaceful and Healthy?

If everyone reading this ditches their leaf blower, it will help–but isolated actions only go so far. If we care as a community about our health and environment, we’ll finally pass a sensible ordinance and join the 48 other towns and cities across California that have banned gas-powered leaf blowers (see map). Pacific Grove, our neighbor across the bay, banned them in 2020 by a vote of 7-0. City residents value our clean air and the health of our families and laborers–so why does Santa Cruz still allow these outdated, noxious machines?

Santa Cruz City Policies

Santa Cruz Health in All Policies

The City of Santa Cruz committed to considering health, equity, and sustainability in all operations and policies (Health in All Policies), yet the city council has still not considered restricting gas-powered leaf blowers, perhaps the least efficient, most toxic machines in the city. There are better alternatives, so restricting gas blowers is low-hanging fruit–an easy way to remove a well-documented threat to clean air and health and show the city is serious about its commitment to Health in All Policies.

Santa Cruz has not yet taken this sensible and overdue step. Santa Cruz C.H.A.S.E. is working to make that happen.

Take one quick action now

The most powerful action you can do is send a message to city council–and we’ve made it easy.

Click the logo below and write a short message about how the noise and pollution of leaf blowers impacts you and your family. It will be sent to all council members.

santa cruz city logo

The Problem

Gas powered leaf blowers inflict large public pain for a small private gain.

Gas-powered leaf blowers are outdated devices that disturb the peace while spewing a host of harmful toxins and pollutants into our neighborhoods. It’s like smoking sections on airplanes–it was never a good idea, but years ago common sense finally won out. Continuing to ask people to swallow the harms of gas-powered leaf blowers, in 2024, is a massive failure of political leadership.

Learn more about the extreme impacts of leaf blowers on residents, landscapers, and our city. Or if you don’t need convincing, jump to solutions below!

leaf blower impacts
Source: CA Air Resources Board, 2000; C.H.A.S.E., 2019



Talk to your landscaper and neighbors about the impacts of gas leaf blowers, and help spark the voluntary transition to quiet/clean tools in your neighborhood. Check out our page on clean alternatives that are a win-win for everyone.


Press our city council to address the problem long term, with a solid ordinance.

You can write to the city council, get the yard sign, send a letter to the editor, and more.

Learn more about how you can help

Santa Cruz C.H.A.S.E.
Santa Cruz Coalition for a Healthy & Safe Environment

Santa Cruz, CA