essay on fire crackers are burning our environment
Diwali is round the corner and people must be busy shopping for clothes, sweets, candles, diyas and other puja materials at a feverish pace. But does the shopping list also include crackers? This is a point to ponder for our public, which should be made aware of the ill-effects of bursting crackers during a festival associated with joy, peace and prosperity. The government often explains to the common man the danger of bursting crackers both health wise in terms of the noise and air pollution it causes to the effect it has on children, who are often engaged in manufacturing them, in an industry which is hazardous and illegal if employing children.We are encouraging and promoting the celebration of Diwali with colours, flowers, sweets, rangoli, etc. – Jyoti Arora, (Principal)Mount Abu Public School Sector 5, Rohini I am not planning to burst crackers this Diwali. In fact I have never celebrated this festival of light with crackers. I like to light diyas and candles to make the night bright and happy. We also distribute sweets to our friends and neighbours and make a rangoli with colours and flowers. Recently, to spread the message of avoiding crackers during Diwali we participated in a rally organized on the occasion of environment week I am strongly of the view that crackers spoil our environment by causing noise and air pollution and also affects our health. Another reason I think why people should not buy crackers is because they are manufactured using child labour, which is neither legal nor ethical. People should make this festival clean, green and healthyAccidents can happen and children would be the casualties, be it in the cracker factory or at home. People should boycott crackers. But pollution should come down and crackers are major source of air and noise pollution. Children should be strictly instructed to do away with crackers during the celebration of this festival. The fact of the matter is that this message should not just remain in words but transfer into action. For many people bursting crackers is a status symbol, which should change. Let us all make this Diwali a happy and clean one. I strongly feel that Diwali should not be associated with crackers. It should be celebrated with sweets, lights and colour. We should remember people who have sacrificed their life for the country and donate money towards some social cause instead of wasting it on crackers. Moreover, in the factories manufacturing crackers child labour is used, which is illegal. It spoils the future of such children. At home, we emphasize the celebration of Diwali with sweets, puja, etc, instead of bursting crackers. Pollution in any form be it air pollution or noise pollution harms not only the environment but also the health of people especially children, who suffer from asthma, deafness, etc. Bursting crackers makes the matter worse for the already suffering public. through skits. We can celebrate this festival of joy like lighting diyas and candles, making rangoli, distributing sweets and decorating house, etc. Through bursting crackers on Diwali, pollution of one month is generated in a single day. Moreover, by buying crackers, we are in a way also supporting child labour, which is wrong. Instead of buying crackers, we can donate the money to old age homes,or an orphanage.
COME DIWALI and one can hear the sounds of firecrackers exploding from all directions. People of all age groups are fascinated with firecrackers, which form a prominent part of the Diwali celebrations. Firecrackers are known to cause air pollution as well as noise pollution and are extremely harmful for senior citizens and small children.
Pets such as dogs and cats also suffer on account of firecrackers as animals have a more sensitive sense of hearing than humans. It is important for each one of us to act as responsible citizens and discourage the use of firecrackers.
Firecrackers can cause hearing loss, high blood pressure, sleeping disturbances and sudden exposure to loud noise can cause temporary or permanent deafness or even result in heart attack. Nausea and mental impairment are also some of the side effects of firecrackers.
Karuna Mehta an environmental activist says, “Firecrackers should be banned as they cause a number of health hazards. People come down with all sorts of respiratory problems such as asthma and bronchitis. Air and noise pollution are also the side effects of firecrackers that are responsible for various injuries. The smog that is created on Diwali is responsible for a number of accidents due to reduced visibility.”
According to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), a non-profit organization, awareness should be created for the masses. People need to understand that bursting firecrackers is not trendy anymore. It is important for the government to organize anti-firecracker campaigns and discourage people from bursting firecrackers. Parents as well as children should be educated on the harmful effects of firecrackers and environmental laws should be implemented strictly.
Observing that the ‘Right to Sleep’ is a fundamental right, the government of India has banned firecrackers between 10 pm and 6 am, on Diwali. The effect of this ban has been very positive and the sale of firecrackers has considerably gone down.
Anita Pal, a schoolteacher says, “It is important for children to understand that bursting crackers is harmful. We educate children before Diwali and discourage them from bursting firecrackers. We also ask them to educate their parents and relatives on the harmful effects of firecrackers as well as the dangers accompanying them.”
Diwali is the biggest festival of India and its sanctity should not be blown away in smoke. This festival of goodwill can be celebrated in a number of ways other than bursting firecrackers.
The Central Pollution Board of India has banned firecrackers with a decibel level of more than 125 at a distance of 4 meters from the bursting point. There has also been a considerable effort to do away with the infamous 1000 chain bombs.
Amrita Puri, executive says, “I can still recall the day when one of my neighbours had a heart failure on Diwali. It was on account of someone having burst a gola bomb in front of him. It was a sad incident and such mishaps can happen with anyone if we are not careful.”
Let each one of us take a pledge this Diwali to say NO to firecrackers and invest in a safer and greener future. Diwali is the festival of lights and we must enlighten our lives with the sparkle of joy and goodwill, forget past grievances and look ahead towards a brighter and happier future.
Celebrate an Environmentally Safe Diwali
Did you know that diyas lit on the moonless Diwali night signifies the end of darkness of ignorance and the beginning of light that enlightens all? Well, this Diwali enlighten yourself towards the hazards that boisterous celebrations of Diwali poses to our environment.
This articles endeavours to sensitise the readers towards celebrating an environmentally safe Diwali by pointing out the major impacts that Diwali has on our environment. It is hoped that this articles will encourage you to celebrate a green Diwali, where there will be an explosion of joy without crackers!
How to celebrate an Eco Sensitive Diwali?
Now, that you are interested in celebrating an Eco – Sensitive Diwali, the first thing that you need to do is to make yourself aware about the effects the traditional Diwali celebrations has on the Mother Nature. Given below are three major environmental impacts that Diwali Festival have on our environment.
- Air Pollution through Firecrackers
- Excessive Consumerism
- High Energy Consumption
1. Air Pollution through Firecrackers – “Say ‘No’ to Fire crackers and ‘Yes’ to life!”
For most people lighting of firecrackers is the highlight of Diwali. Brighter the sparkles, louder the noise the greater the thrill!! In fact to many of us, these aesthetic forms of light seem so appropriate and most essential when celebrating the ‘Festival of Lights’.
But little do people realize that in our increasingly populated and polluted cities, the temporary joy of watching the firecrackers is soon replaced by the intense air pollution caused by these. The toxic substances used in the firecrackers release toxic gases that are harmful to the health of all living beings. The high level of noise generated by the crackers cause immense suffering to birds and animals. Besides, Diwali crackers are dreaded by the sick and the ailing.
Sadly, few of us realise that the firecrackers used on Diwali are mostly made by very young children. Since the substances being handled are extremely toxic many of these child labourers get sick and die in their early teenage years.
Harmful effects of Chemicals used in crackers
Let’s do a little analysis of crackers and list out in actual terms the harmful effects posed by each of its chemicals.
Copper Irritation of respiratory tract
Cadmium Anemia and damage to kidney
Could lead to coma
Lead Affects the nervous system
Magnesium Its dust and fumes cause metal fume fever
Sodium Reacts violently with moisture and can attack the skin
Zinc Leads to vomiting
Nitrite Could lead to mental impairmen
Noise Pollution caused by Fire Crackers
Crackers that make a noise of more than 125 decibels at four metres distance from the point of bursting are banned by the law. Given here are the hazards posed by excessive noise pollution caused by crackers:
- Hearing loss, high blood pressure, heart attack and sleeping disturbances.
- Sudden exposure to loud noise could cause temporary deafness or permanent relative deafness.
2. Excessive Consumerism
An indirect but equally significant impact of Diwali on nature is due to the increased consumption. Since Diwali is also a celebration of abundance and wealth – many people believe that it is a good time to buy. Often, people go out and buy new items even when they don’t need them. Advertisements and hoardings scream out to people offerings sales extravaganzas, bargains, discounts encouraging us to buy more and more!
How does this increased consumption affect Nature?
A point to realize is that all man made items are made out of materials that come from Nature. Be it plastic, metal, paper or cloth – all of these raw materials come directly from nature. Those sources that are non renewable (cannot be grown back) such as fossil fuels and metal ores get depleted and will one day run out. Depletion of non renewable natural resources is one of the most significant impact of consumerism.
For instance, the gold earrings that you will buy on Diwali is coming from a gold mine that is not only depleting the gold resources of the earth, but in the process of mining is probably ruining several ecosystems.
A question to ponder at this stage is, where do all the things we throw away go finally? Solid waste created by human beings which is non biodegradable (does not easily decompose) has to be filled into holes dug up in the ground. These ‘landfills’ as they are called may exist for centuries without completely getting integrated into the soil. The plastic toys that you are throwing away today, may exist in a landfill several generations after yours!
Five Principles of Nature conservation
To be able to conserve our natural environment it is important to keep in the following principles –
- Reduce : the amount of things we use
- Reuse : the things we have in different forms until we have absolutely no use for them
- Recycle : items that are no longer functional.
- Rethink: the choices we make when deciding to buy something and
- Refuse : things that we do not need at all.
So this Diwali, before you buy something new apply the above five principles and only then pay at the counter!
3. High Energy Consumption
The festival of lights puts a considerably heavy load on electrical energy sources that are already overloaded. The use of electric lights to adorn homes, business establishments, monuments and roads requires a huge amount of electricity. The older tradition of burning oil lamps is a possible alternative to electric lights – even though it does use oil, the duration of the lamps is shorter.
I’m not compelling you to stop bursting crackers. If you stop bursting crackers means it’ll be useful to all. If you can’t stop bursting crackers means atleast try to reduce as much as you can. Hope you understand the harmful effects of bursting crackers. Thank you for reading this…… And also spread these things to many people if you can………
Firecrackers! Just the term creates joy and excitement in one’s mind. The heart flutters with thrill and enthusiasm developed by the sight those colorful showers and sparkles from the fireworks in the sky. But is it all about fun? Have you ever wondered how many harmful effects and disadvantages do these fireworks create for the environment, people and other living beings?
We all have become so narrow-minded that we just expect joy out of everything and forget about the negative impacts of the same on the rest of the world! Of course, every coin has two sides. But, it is also our responsibility to make sure that the positive side is heavier than the negative side. We are hypocrites, talking and advertising about the greenhouse effect and global warming, animal welfare, eco-friendly products and activities etc., but enjoy burning those noisy, toxic and extremely harmful fireworks in the name of celebration. Although we hear a lot of information and bad news about the horrible impacts created by the firecrackers, we just do not care. We take it through one ear, and let it out through the other ear!
What if the impact was on you? What if you are the victim who suffers those terrible health damages and environmental damages? Would that ring a bell?
Do not think it is not your responsibility. It is yours, theirs and everyone’s duty to take care of the environment, fellow humans and other living beings. You may wonder why and how.
Read the following to know some of the dangerous and harmful impacts and the other disadvantages created by these so called fun-filled firecrackers. Hope it inspires you to stop using them deliberately in the name of fun and joy and protect the mother earth and her children from danger and destruction.
10. Right to sleep!
You may be having a great time celebrating and enjoying, bursting those boisterous fireworks. But it need not be the same for the others around you! What about your neighbors? They may wish to take a nap after a long day and it could be perturbed by your super powerful fireworks. Everybody needs to sleep! It is their fundamental right and you have no privilege to grab it from them. It’s a violation of law! Your neighbor could be sick, or many have an important appointment the next day. He/she could also be having a test or an exam the next morning and they may need some rest. Burning firecrackers late at night and odd hours disturbs everyone living in that community and their right to sleep.
Most of the firecrackers when burnt give out excess smoke. These contain tiny metallic particles. When burnt on the streets and roads, it produces smog that is so dense and foggy. People walking or driving on the roads can not see who is coming in the opposite direction and leads to lack of proper visiblity of the traffic on the roads, which leads to accidents. Sometimes, people even choke and suffer and miss their concentration and balance while driving. This is one of the main causes for most of the road accidents during festivals celebrated by burning fireworks.
8. What about the other living beings?
The sparkles, powerful sounds, flashy lights and colors from fireworks might excite a human mind. What about the rest of the living beings? Are we the only one’s living in this world? No! There are many tiny beautiful creatures and other living beings that share this wonderful planet and they need some privacy and peace too. Most of the animals and birds get scared and they panic as they do not know what exactly is happening around them. It is not joy but shock that fills their innocent minds. When they hear such booming noise from those crackers they tremble with fear and run helter-skelter! People hardly consider them and their hearts before bursting those noisy crackers.
7. “Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink”
We live in a world where drinking water has become a very precious commodity and it needs to be saved very vigorously. Sometimes, the public fireworks displays are done across lakes and other water bodies to prevent fire accidents. Although they help reduce fire accidents, they create another huge problem on the other side! Fireworks contain perchlorate particles in their composition. Recent studies and researches have proved that these perchlorate particles mix with water and causes contamination in the water bodies. These particles can also penetrate through the soil and contaminate the ground water too and make them unfit to consume!
6. Child Labor
You may wonder what burning firecrackers have got to do with child labor. Actually they do have a connection. Most of the firework industries employ children for the production of firecrackers over a large scale even though it is illegal and inhuman. It is a very hazardous task and is very dangerous to the worker’s life. They employ underage kids as they offer really cheap labor. Children who can not afford for education and other fundamental amenities are forced to work under such callous conditions. Such children could be saved and could be provided with education and better lifestyle if the money wasted on burning those firecrackers is usefully spent for their welfare.
5. Public nuisance
Infants, elders and the sick require peace and serenity. They are generally weak hearted and can not bear sudden shock or trauma. Their lungs and nostrils too are very tender. Smoke and other gases produced while burning firecrackers could suffocate them to death! Many elderly and sick people suffer strokes and heart attack due to the noise created by these fireworks. Some may even die due to huge shock! Babies too find it too scary just like the innocent animals and birds. Firecrackers are terrible public nuisance especially to the sick, infants and senior citizens.
4. Fire Accidents
The image that comes to anybody’s mind on hearing the word firecrackers is usually “fire.” Burning firecrackers without proper care and precaution could lead to lot of fire accidents, burns and injuries. Sometimes the rockets (firework) may not be launched properly and could end up burning down a hut near by. People might even step on a firework by mistake and face horrible injuries later. Many fire accidents and deaths have been noted due to such careless handling of fireworks during festivals and carnivals.
Some of the firecrackers are made out of materials that are partially biodegradable and rest is non-biodegradable. The shells and outer covers are usually made of plastics that are non-biodegradable. These materials do not decay and slowly contaminate the soil. The land thus becomes useless as it gets dumped with such particles which can not be broken down by natural processes. These pose a serious threat to the fertility of the soil. The chemicals and other metallic substances used in these fireworks also seep through the soil and create permanent damage and contamination of the soil.
2. Noise pollution
Nowadays people go gaga over double powerful sound producing firecrackers without the knowledge of the harm and serious damage that t could cause to their fellow human beings. Firecrackers produce very high level of sound and the vibrations can travel over a long distance. These are sometimes over 140 decibels! A human ear can bear a maximum of 85 decibels. Sounds above this limit create disability in hearing and causes permanent damage to the ears.
1. Air pollution
Firecrackers when burnt release a large amount of very tiny toxic particles usually called the suspended particulate matter that can easily enter our lungs and damage the respiratory system. The smoke from firecrackers contain sulfur compounds, heavy metals and other toxic chemicals and harmful fumes of gases such as sulfur dioxide, ozone etc,. People with asthma, multiple chemical sensitivity and other breathing problems suffer largely due to the toxic emissions from these fireworks. In a world where global warming is posing a serious threat the carbon dioxide, ozone and other greenhouse gases emitted by the firecrackers crate a huge impact in the atmosphere.Related posts:
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Diwali, known as the festival of lights and sweets has turned into the festival of fireworks and crackers in recent times. Although it’s fun to enjoy this festival with firecrackers, the pollution and negative effects on your health caused by the chemicals released into the environment is hazardous. Every individual — especially children, pregnant women and old people — are at an increased risk of suffering health complications due to the bursting of crackers. Here are some common reasons why you should opt for a cracker-free Diwali.
Noise pollution: The sound produced by numerous firecrackers lit at a single time causes a high decibel of noise, that not only damages the ear, but also increases one’s heart beat. It may also result in temporary deafness in individuals exposed to loud and sudden noise. Apart from causing sleep problems and high blood pressure, the risk of heart attacks or permanent hearing impairment is also high.
Smoke in the air: In addition to causing sound pollution, firecrackers also pollute the air and environment. The atmosphere is filled with smoke and obnoxious smells from the chemicals that causes harmful effects to one’s overall health. People suffering from lung and respiratory illness like asthma are at an increased risk of health complications especially during this time.
Burns or injuries: It is seen that there is an increase in the cases of burns or injuries caused due to unsafe practices employed while bursting the crackers. Especially, burns on the hands and legs are commonly seen in children and young individuals.
Air pollutants that don’t go away easily: With hazardous chemicals present in the firecrackers being spread in the environment, there is an increased risk of skin problems mainly itching or rashes, eye infections, sinusitis, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases) and headache. Apart from that, young kids and pregnant women might inhale the poisonous mix of chemicals and gases thereby increasing their risk of health problems. Hence, it is advised to wear face masks and abstain from using firecrackers during Diwali.
Stomach problems: When you lite firecrackers, the chemicals present in them gets onto your hands and body. Although, most people including kids wash their hands before eating anything, there might be minute traces of these harmful chemicals left, that might get into your stomach leading to indigestion and other digestive problems.
Apart from these, firecrackers also increase global warming, burn a hole in your pocket, scare innocent animals and add to garbage woes (already a big problem in India). So this Diwali, try to celebrate the festival in the eco-friendly manner by staying away from firecrackers. Happy Diwali!
Image Source: Getty Images
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