By Stuart Crawford
As the leaves turn brown and begin to tumble to the ground at the end of our Indian summer, a new pestilence descends upon us at the same time. The blight of the petrol-drive leaf blower, arguably the most useless piece of machinery invented by man, is upon us again. Blowing the leaves into a pile, noisily, during the day, and letting the wind then redistribute them again overnight, is surely one of modern society's most pointless pastimes.
It is probably too much to ask that everyone abandons their blowers and return to the good old days of rake and bin, but there are other solutions. Responsible landowners have already traded in their petrol machines for the much more benign electric equivalents, thereby not only reducing noise pollution but also avoiding pumping out noxious fumes into the environment.
I note that East Lothian Council regularly deploys its fleet of noisy, petrol-engined blowers in its efforts to maintain our green spaces across the county. Time for it to convert to electric models and set the example in environmental responsibility?