Action 358: Don’t plan New Year’s Eve fireworks

Firework wasteDate: 24 December
Action: 358
Cost of taking action: SAVES MONEY


Firework displays do a lot of damage – please rethink if you are planning one this New Year’s Eve

There are other, better ways to celebrate the New Year

Over the last couple of decades, in fact ever since the massive firework celebrations of the millennium, firework displays have become more and more common. But please, if you are planning to hold one this year for a New Year party, please rethink this and consider cancelling it in favour of some other way of celebrating.

Even large firework displays are being cancelled this year – partly because of COVID and partly because it is increasingly recognised that they are damaging to our environment.

Firework wasteFireworks cause damage, litter, pollution and scare local wildlife, farm animals and pets.

They do much more harm than good.

Why is this a problem?

  • Fireworks propel a cocktail of chemicals into the atmosphere, soil and water
  • Many of these can harm both people and the environment.
  • The vivid colours in firework displays come from metallic compounds such as barium or aluminium
  • These have negative impacts on animal and human health
  • To produce the oxygen needed for an explosion, many fireworks contain oxidisers known as perchlorates
  • These can dissolve in water, contaminating rivers, lakes and drinking water and poisoning wildlife
  • The gunpowder that fuels their flight is toxic, including containing carcinogenic substances
  • Fireworks scatter smoke and plastic debris
  • Perchlorates can limit the human thyroid gland’s ability to take iodine from the bloodstream, resulting in hypothyroidism
  • Children, infants and foetuses suffer the worst from hypothyroidism as thyroid hormones are crucial for normal growth
  • Particulates get lodged in people’s lungs, an immediate danger for those with asthma in particular
  • Air-quality monitors are known to spike for about three hours after a fireworks show
  • Fireworks frighten wildlife, livestock and domestic pets (and often young children too!)

Fireworks cause long term damage for short term pleasure.

Take action

Please drop your plans for a firework display this New Year, you know it makes sense.

Instead, concentrate on good friends, good food, a drink or two and staying inside in the warm.

Happy New Year!