A bill, which has passed the California Legislature and now sits on the Governor’s desk, would effectively ban the sale of portable generators in the state. Assembly Bill 1346 (Berman) compels the California Air Resources Board to adopt regulations by July 1, 2022, to prohibit engine exhaust and evaporative emissions from all small off-road engine equipment (SORE) including portable generators. While it may be intended to promote the use of battery-operated lawn and garden equipment, it will also result in banning the sale of portable generators in the state as soon as 2024. The Portable Generator Manufacturers’ Association has formally requested an exemption from this proposal for portable generators—but the residents of California need to raise their voices in support as well!
No matter how well-intentioned this bill might be, it makes a critical error in equating portable generators with other small off-road engine equipment. The use of other small off-road engine equipment is often discretionary and planned. But when someone turns to a portable generator, it’s out of necessity. These life-sustaining devices are used by everyday Californians during wildfires, other natural disasters, and rolling blackouts to maintain household power that keeps food from spoiling, water flowing, communication lines open, and even keeps medical devices operating. Nothing else meets the affordability of a portable generator when it comes to performing those critical functions in crisis conditions. Banning California residents from purchasing and possessing portable generators will surely lead to loss of life.
Let Governor Newsom know that you are against the portable generator ban and support an exemption for portable generators in AB 1346. Let’s keep the residents of California safe during wildfires, other natural disasters, and rolling blackouts.