The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

13 December 2006

Next: hybrid hedge trimmers

The Environmental Protection Agency will propose a new national emissions standard for lawn and garden equipment, following approval of new California standards.

This has actually been in the works for some time, but Senator Kit Bond (R-MO) has been trying to block the move. Briggs & Stratton, the largest manufacturer of small engines for lawn equipment, has two plants in Missouri, and has said that major engine redesigns could result in the closing of those plants.

Bond finally signed off on a measure which would prohibit other states from copying the California standard, as usually permitted by the Clean Air Act, but which required the EPA to introduce a national standard, which might be weaker than California's.

The Autoextremist reports that California-bound mowers will have catalytic converters — an EPA study, demanded by Bond, determined that the smog gear introduced no additional safety risk — and that the California Air Resources Board expects the price of a push mower to rise between $37 and $52.

And, California being California, I assume they will come up with some way to appear to mitigate these costs on behalf of the undocumented workers who actually cut the grass.

Posted at 7:26 PM to Dyssynergy

Bet those CA bound mowers will have mandated turn signals, rearview mirrors, and seat belts. And the walk-behind models -- butt belts?

Posted by: Winston at 9:57 PM on 13 December 2006