In action Thursday, May 25, the Valley Air District launched the new Zero-Emission Landscaping Equipment (ZELE) grant program to assist landscape maintenance professionals in replacing their existing gas or diesel-powered equipment with new electric zero-emission alternatives. This program is open to commercial landscape maintenance professionals, school districts, cities, counties, special districts and other businesses and commercial entities willing to replace gas-powered equipment with zero-emission electric options.
Small businesses and public agencies may be eligible for up to 100 percent off the cost of new equipment. Large businesses may be eligible for up to 85 percent off the cost of new equipment, with a 15 percent minimum cost-share requirement. Participants can receive incentives of up to $15,000 for the purchase of various pieces of equipment, including ride-on mowers, walk-behind mowers, edgers, string trimmers, hedge trimmers, chainsaws, pole saws, and brush cutters. There is no cap on the total funding a participant can receive.
Gas-powered yard care equipment poses a significant source of localized air pollution in Valley neighborhoods, as these small engines lack emission controls and emit substantially more pollutants than newer passenger vehicles. To put it into perspective, one gas mower produces emissions equivalent to that of 12 late-model cars operating for the same duration.
This grant program assists landscape maintenance professionals with transitioning to electric landscape equipment prior to state-wide regulations requiring Valley entities interested in this program should visit www.valleyair.org/ZELE to access program guidelines and complete the application process before purchasing equipment. For inquiries, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Air District staff at 559-230-5800. The District has a similar grant program to assist the general public in purchasing electric lawn care equipment for residential use.
The Valley Air District covers eight counties including San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Merced, Madera, Fresno, Kings, Tulare and San Joaquin Valley air basin portions of Kern. For additional information about the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, visit www.valleyair.org or call 559-230-6000.