Anything but trivial
The dangers of leafblowers affect everyone. Often dismissed as a concern of trivial busybodies, banning leafblowers is actually anything but. Below are just some of the top medical, public health, and environmental organizations that have issued literature on the importance of banning leafblowers.
"GLGE is an important source of toxic and carcinogenic exhaust and fine particulate matter. Improved reporting and monitoring of localized GLGE emissions should be implemented. Medical and scientific organizations should increase public awareness of GLGE and GLME and identify GLGE as an important local source of dangerous air pollutants. Communities and environmental, public health, and other government agencies should create policies and programs to protect the public from GLGE air pollutants and promote non-polluting alternatives. "
"Pollution from tiny particulates (also called PM 2.5) [is linked] to a higher risk of complications and death from COVID-19. A onemicrogram increase in concentration with these particles is associated with an 8% increase in risk of death from COVID-19. A single commercial [gas leaf blower] emits tens of millions of micrograms of fine particulates per hour at ground level. The particles may stay suspended in the air for a week or longer, so they present a risk to anyone in the vicinity. Pollution from PM 2.5 is also linked to other serious health problems, including heart attacks, worsening of asthma, and other heart and lung problems. "
"The results of this study indicate that landscape maintenance sound produced by GLBs may travel over long distances in a community at levels known to increase the risk of adverse health effects. Vulnerable populations include workers, children, the elderly, the sick, those who work from home, and those who work overnight shifts. A-weighted decibel metrics do not adequately characterize GLB sound and its potential impact on a community. Because of the prevalent use of this type of equipment, it is important for health professionals and policy makers to understand the impact this type of sound may have on surrounding communities."
Characteristics of Lawn and Garden Equipment Sound: A Community Pilot Study
Ozone and PM2.5s are well known causes of, or contributors to, early death, cardiovascular disease, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, premature births, and other serious health conditions. Even short-term exposure can be harmful. Workers, children, seniors, and people with chronic illness are at greatest risk.
ALA State of the Air 2015
“Leaf blowers pose multiple hazards to human health. Children are the most susceptible members of our population to these hazards because they breathe more air per pound of body weight per day than adults and thus inhale more of any pollutants that are thrown into the air by this equipment. Children's vulnerability to the health effects of this equipment is further magnified by the fact that … their lungs, ears, eyes, and other organ systems are inherently more sensitive to environmental hazards than the organs of adults.” Every doctor affiliated with the Children’s Environmental Health Center in New York City signed a letter submitted on April 22, 2010 by the Mt. Sinai Hospital
Leaf blowers can be "fatal to insects in the foliage. There is a risk that small animals are absorbed or blown and thereby damaged," the. Noise emissions, pollution and harm to soil biology must also be considered when using leaf blowers. Silvia Bender, a species protection expert for the Ministry for the Environment in Germany.