Diwali, the festival of lights, brings excitement and a celebratory spirit among all the people. It is the time to make colorful rangolis, decorate the house, light Diyas, burst crackers, and throw/attend parties. Diwali signifies the triumph of good over evil. But Diwali has off late become synonymous with rising levels of pollution and creating an alarming scenario across the country. This Diwali, let us make an effort to make it signify something else, make an effort to “not to pollute” the environment and make it an eco-friendly Diwali. Here are some easy tips to celebrate the festival with your friends and family in an eco-friendly manner.
Use green crackers:
With the government restricting the duration of lighting firecrackers and the pollution issue, fireworks minus pollutants seem to be the way to go. It looks like indigenous firecrackers were a lot less polluting than modern day crackers. Modern-day crackers aim at creating visual treats by emitting more light and sound. Their manufacturers are less interested in using ingredients which cause less pollution. Green crackers hope to be the alternative to this.
What are green crackers:
Recently, the Supreme Court of India has issued a directive to use only green crackers. So what are green crackers? Green crackers are those crackers where the harmful components of firecrackers are replaced with less dangerous ones. Crackers that do not emit sulfur dioxide are used. Barium nitrate, used in flower pots, is substituted with an eco-friendly version. Substandard raw materials used in firecrackers are the main pollutants; these are replaced by standardised ones in green crackers. Some traditional firecracker makers use the indigenous raw material with a traditional formula that has low noise with little chemicals. These could turn your Diwali night into an eco-friendly, yet colourful and starry night.
Burst firecrackers for a limited time:
While kids might want to burst firecrackers starting a day or two ahead of Diwali, the increased atmospheric pollution is a matter of serious concern. Plan your time for bursting crackers beforehand with the entire family and stick to it.
Use eco-friendly decorations:
As you clean your house and gear-up for a fresh look, take one step towards using eco-friendly decorations. Choose home decor that is reused, recycled, will require very little maintenance, and will last a long time. Go by the concept of what comes out of the earth, has to go back to earth.
Make flower-based rangolis:
The bright, colorful rangolis in front of every house makes Diwali festival all the more special. In the good olden days, people used to make rangolis out of rice flour. But the colorful rangoli powders which we get in the market now are laden with chemicals. All you need to do is pick up kumkum, turmeric, colored pulses, and rice flour. Using colorful flowers and flower petals, you can make amazing rangolis that are not only beautiful but also chemical-free and eco-friendly.
Light more Diyas:
Brightly shining Diyas are the best part of Diwali. They are a feast to the eyes. Avoid lighting wax Diyas or using electric lights. Instead, light traditional Diyas with oil and wick, which are not only sparkling bright but also clean the atmosphere around your house. Use of terracotta Diyas, earthen lanterns and lamps will go easy on your pocket too.
If you are keen on using electric lamps for decorating your house, you can go green by switching them off during the daytime and only switching them on at night time, thus saving electricity for the environment and your electric bills.
Gifts and shopping:
Gifts made of recyclable materials and made at home are the best way to have an eco-friendly Diwali. Your guests will not only appreciate your handiwork but will also savour the efforts you had put in making those gifts and make them feel all the more special. Children can do some best-out-of waste projects to make gifts for their friends. This way, they can use their creativity and also remain busy. Gifting your friends and family with plants is a great way of promoting a healthy environment. Buy cotton and khadi clothes, eco-friendly decorations like terracotta decorations and jewellery.
Avoid the use of plastics:
Avoiding plastic is becoming more and more difficult in modern times. Whether you treat your guests to a gourmet dinner or you have a Diwali bash for your kid’s friends, you can make a difference by using eco-friendly and biodegradable cutlery. This will not only create a trend but will also inspire others to use such alternatives.
Diwali is a festival of togetherness, happiness, and positivity. While we wish to pass on the traditions to our next generations, let us do it in a responsible manner. Let us celebrate this Diwali along with protecting our environment by celebrating an eco-friendly Diwali. Happy Diwali!