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Feuerwerk Silvester Jahreswechsel

Fireworks ban in 2021 - the environment sees it positively

Most people like to celebrate the turn of the year loudly – ​​with fireworks, firecrackers and lots of bang. As in the previous year, the Federal Council put a spanner in the works: a ban on the sale of New Year's firecrackers in order to relieve the hospitals. In this article you will find out why our health, the animal world and in particular our environment are breathing a sigh of relief and benefiting from this decision.

Environmental damage particulate matter New Year's Eve

Above all, large sums of money and black powder are burned

Saving the whole year in order to then squander everything at the New Year's Eve party is not so far-fetched for many. Within a few minutes, not only glowing firecrackers are burned, but above all horrendous sums of money and an enormous amount of gunpowder. The fine dust pollution increases at least as much as the countless rockets. What remains are mountains of rubbish and a polluted environment. A lot of the remains of the bangers end up somewhere in the middle of nowhere and often just lie on green areas or in bodies of water where they are not collected. These residues, in turn, end up in the soil, water and food cycles as microplastics.

Spent pyrotechnics also contain various chemicals that are dissolved by rainwater and thus settle in soil and water. At the turn of the year 2019 alone, more than 43,000 tons of fireworks were sold. Thanks to the sales ban last year, a total of 3500 tons of plastic waste could be saved!

Fireworks and the consequences for wildlife

Who actually thinks of the frightened domestic, wild and farm animals on New Year's Eve? For example, almost half of dogs show anxiety symptoms when hearing fireworks.

Wild animals also suffer, because the sudden popping and flickering of unnatural flashes of light quickly causes them to panic. The animals usually flee; it is not uncommon for them to suffer injuries, which can also be fatal.

frightened dog

Birds are particularly sensitive. Radar measurements on New Year's Eve indicated that they were climbing to great heights. This costs them an enormous amount of energy and leads to disorientation.

Similar frightening behavior can be observed in livestock: frightened chickens, for example, often crowd into corners, trampling themselves to death or suffocating. In addition, it happens again and again that entire stables catch fire from firecrackers or rockets.

Our health also suffers during New Year's Eve

As if that weren't bad enough, our health is also damaged. This is not only due to the fine dust (fireworks produce around 2050 tons), but also to injuries caused by firecrackers, howlers and the like. Pyrotechnics cause around 8000 (severe) injuries in hospitals every year and push the staff to their breaking point.

People with pre-existing conditions such as asthma, but also children and pregnant women, are particularly affected. Measurement data confirm that the increase in particle size is greatest on New Year's Eve.

graphic fireworks

On the one hand, this is due to the dry winter air, which, together with the fine dust, irritates the respiratory tract, on the other hand, toxic ingredients such as sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide irritate the lungs. The Federal Environment Agency stated that on New Year's Eve around 16% of the amount of fine dust caused by road traffic every year is released. In order to compensate for this enormous amount, theoretically all motor vehicles would have to stand still for eight weeks.

Danger from toxic pollutants and imported goods

Not only plastic and toxic printing inks are a burden, but also the heavy metals and pollutants contained in the fireworks. Particularly problematic are the toxic heavy metals such as lead, arsenic and mercury, which are now banned for good reason. If the sale of pyrotechnics and firecrackers is prohibited in Germany, many people import illegal goods from Poland or other neighboring countries. Elements classified as heavy metals such as copper and barium are often still used there. The plastic PVC is also still used because of its color enhancement, but releases highly toxic dioxins when burned.

According to a survey from 2019, 57 percent of Germans voted for a ban on New Year's fireworks/Böller. What do you think about?

We wish you a happy and healthy new year 2022

Lettering Happy nu year