As debates over net-zero targets rage across the country, the owner of a Wagga garden care business has taken emissions reduction into his own gloves.
Steve Ween, the owner of Crow Mow, has begun the mammoth task of transitioning all of his gas-guzzling equipment to battery-powered alternatives.
The switch will cost him tens of thousands in upfront costs, but he believes the long-term benefits for his business, his customers and the environment, far outweigh the negatives.
"We are an industry that cares for the environment and I thought, well, maybe we should care about it as well," Mr Ween said.
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First off the chopping block will be all of his equipment that uses the particularly harmful two-stroke engines.
Once that is complete, he will set his sights on replacing bigger equipment like his various lawn mowers.
"We stuck our toes in the water a little bit and bought an electric pole hedge trimmer and then we started thinking why buy two-stroke at all? It's heavier, louder and it produces a lot more carbon emissions," Mr Ween said.
But the road to a fully electric catalogue of gear is full of expensive hurdles and Mr Ween said it would take nearly 18 months before he can afford to replace all of the handheld gear.
He has applied for a grant from Wagga City Council which would cut 12 years off that timeframe and he believes even more could be done to help local companies become more environmentally-friendly.
"It would be good to see the other levels of government come on board as well and offer even more [incentives]," Mr Ween said.
The Crow Mow owner encouraged other small business owners to look at whether there is anything they can afford to do to become more environmentally-friendly.
"Have a look, see what you can do, see if it does make sense, and also think about what your responsibility is to the community," he said.
Wagga City Council is currently looking at ways it can help residents reduce their emissions off the back of a petition co-ordinated partly by Climate Rescue of Wagga (CROW).
CROW chairperson William Adlong said he was delighted some businesses were helping the city achieve its net-zero targets.
"It's great to see and the businesses that take the lead can really help the community understand what's involved in reducing their emissions," he said.
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