British Columbians Split on Banning Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers

Half of the province’s residents worry “a great deal” or “a fair amount” about noise pollution associated with landscaping.

Vancouver, BC [July 13, 2021] – There is no consensus when residents of British Columbia are asked if the time has come to prohibit the use of a specific type of landscaping equipment, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, 38% of British Columbians support their municipality enacting a by-law that would ban the use of gas-powered leaf blowers, while 40% oppose this course of action.

Support for prohibiting gas-powered leaf blowers reaches 48% on Vancouver Island, but drops to 39% in Metro Vancouver, 37% in Northern BC, 32% in Southern BC and 29% in the Fraser Valley.

One third of British Columbians (34%) are in favour of a municipal ban on gas-powered lawn mowers, while more than two-in-five (44%) are opposed.

Opposition to prohibiting gas-powered lawn mowers is strongest among British Columbians aged 55 and over (53%) and drops to 43% among those aged 35-to-54 and to 33% among those aged 18-to-34.

Fewer British Columbians are supportive of prohibiting electric leaf blowers (31%, with 48% opposed) and electric lawn mowers (27%, with 53% opposed) in their municipality.

Half of British Columbians (50%) say they worry about noise pollution associated with the use of landscaping equipment “a great deal” or “a fair amount”, while 44% feel the same way about air pollution.

“More than half of British Columbians aged 18-to-34 (54%) and aged 35-to-54 (51%) are concerned about noise pollution from landscaping equipment,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The proportion is lower among their counterparts aged 55 and over (45%).”

Almost two-in-five British Columbians (38%) say that a gas-powered lawn mower has been used on their property, while fewer recall the operation of electric lawn mowers (30%), electric leaf blowers (27%), gas-powered leaf blowers (20%) and reel lawn mowers (10%).

Reliance on gas-powered lawn mowers is more prevalent in Northern BC (58%), Southern BC (52%) and Vancouver Island (50%) than in the Fraser Valley (42%) and Metro Vancouver (30%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from June 18 to June 20, 2021, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.5 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.