About the Program

Mow Down Pollution is brought to you by Summerhill Impact and The Home Depot Canada. Mow Down Pollution is designed to encourage and reward Canadians for permanently retiring their older, higher-polluting gasoline-powered lawn equipment. If you bring in your old gas lawnmower, string trimmer, hedge trimmer or chainsaw to any Home Depot location across Canada during the event you will receive an instant rebate on the purchase of an environmentally preferable alternative product. We will ensure that your old lawn equipment is recycled responsibly. No purchase is necessary to take advantage of the free recycling.

Health and Environmental Benefits

A major focus of Mow Down Pollution is educating Canadians on the negative health and environmental impacts of using old inefficient gas-powered lawn and garden equipment. Few people think of their old gas mower as a major source of air pollution, but the small engines found in lawn mowers, leaf chainsaws, and weed or hedge trimmers, as well as other small off-road engines, are a significant source of greenhouse gases, air pollution, and smog. Environment Canada estimates emissions from off-road engines to make up about 9% of Canada’s total mobile air emissions. While all small gas-powered engines emit harmful emissions, the worst offenders are two-stroke engines. Two-stroke models burn a mixture of gas and oil. According to Stats Canada, over one year the average two-stroke mower can emit the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions as the average car travelling about 3,300 kilometers – almost the distance from Halifax to Regina. In addition to greenhouse gases, two-stroke engines are a significant contributor towards smog and poor air quality, posing a risk to those suffering from asthma, lung disease, cardiovascular disease and allergies. With so many consequences, it can seem shocking that many family, friends and neighbours still use old two-stroke mowers, especially when cleaner alternatives exist.

With new alternatives in mind, the most healthy and environmentally friendly alternative to a gas mower is the push reel mower which emits no pollution. Also preferable to gas-powered equipment are electric or cordless rechargeable models that are easy to start, require no gas or oil, and are inexpensive to maintain and operate. These alternatives are also significantly quieter than their gas-powered counterparts.

For home owners for whom a push reel or electric mower is not an option, cleaner gas-powered lawn equipment is available. In 2003, the Federal government introduced engine emissions standards regulating greenhouse gas and smog emissions from gas-powered lawn equipment and other small spark-ignition engines manufactured on or after January 1, 2005. Using a new, low-emission, four-stroke gas mower with a spill-proof gas can helps prevent gasoline spills and lessens the environmental impact of using gas-powered mowers.

During Mow Down Pollution, Summerhill Impact will take your old mower, trimmer, or chainsaw and recycle it responsibly. We partner with local recyclers across Canada, ensuring your collected equipment is not shipped extensive distances for recycling.

Results

Since the launch of Mow Down Pollution in 2001, more than 63,000 lawnmowers, trimmers and chainsaws have been permanently retired and responsibly recycled across Canada, preventing the release of more than 2,100 metric tonnes of greenhouse gas and smog-forming emissions. That's the equivalent of the carbon captured by 326 acres of pine or fir forests or the annual greenhouse gas emissions from 300 passenger vehicles.

About the Program
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