For Goodness Rake!

Truthout’s weekly posting of, “The Green Ninja,” a character created by a climate scientist and his team, provides an entertaining and educational way to help children – and everyone else – grasp the intricacies of climate change and learn what they can personally do to become involved in fighting it. See additional details about the series or head straight to this week’s episode, “For Goodness Rake!

After a man excitedly turns on his new leaf blower, things get a little out of control.

So, what are the pros and cons of gas-powered leaf blowers?

Pros: They can save people time doing yard/garden cleanup, but…

  • they use gasoline to operate
  • require maintenance
  • produce A LOT of noise pollution
  • produce combustion smell
  • remove topsoil from the ground, leaving roots of trees exposed
  • lift up dirt that can get into people’s eyes, mouths and noses
  • release air pollutants that affect people’s respiratory systems
  • can cause back and hearing problems to their users.

What are the Green Ninja action moves?

Turning off the leaf blower: This is an important step.

Applying mulch: Mulch protects exposed roots of trees, improves water retention of the soil, prevents the growth of weeds, and provides decomposing food so there is more organic matter available for the tree and other plants around it.

Using a rake: This is the best alternative for smaller areas (like a home’s backyard), and certainly a lot more economical to purchase and operate!