in Germany, New Year’s fireworks smell of sulfur – Liberation

New Year

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Anti-pollution associations and doctors are calling for a ban on New Year’s fireworks and rockets launched in such quantities that they would cause pollution and health risks.

That’s it, it begins again! After a two-year pandemic ban, Germany’s nightmare of New Year’s fireworks and fireworks is back. “This time I fear the worst”, worries J├╝rgen Resch, chairman of the NGO Deutsche Umwelthilfe, which has been calling for a permanent ban on this activity for years “extremely polluting”. “The police, the doctors, the emergency services, but also a majority of Germans, according to opinion polls, want to put an end to this escalation of fireworks”, he assures.

Out of a sense of responsibility, some major retail chains have decided to remove this product from their shelves. But not everyone wanted, in the name of a good environmental conscience, to give up good deals: the German association of the pyrotechnic industry expects an annual turnover of 120 million euros (including 90% New Year’s week), almost as much as before the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Annual emission of fine particles”

According to figures published before the epidemic by the Federal Office for the Environment, New Year’s Eve fireworks leave more than 40,000 tons of pyrotechnic and chemical waste in the streets and garbage cans every year, some of which ends up in the groundwater. They also represent the equivalent of 25% of emissions from wood burning and 7% of all fine particles emitted by car traffic… over a year.

“The most important thing is not the quantity

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